As many listeners of GLBT podcasts already know, one of the podcasting originals—we’ll call him X—was forced completely off the Internet recently. It came as a direct result of online harassment, possibly by the same person who exposed X to his employer, putting him at risk of being fired (because firing gay people for being gay is perfectly legal in most of the USA). That’s all we can really say about it.
This makes me feel sad because it means no more podcasts from him, but I can’t express how angry it makes me feel, too. He’s a great person who didn’t deserve this treatment (not that any of us do). Also, because the departure was so abrupt, none of us had the chance to say good-bye or thank you for those many hundreds of hours of podcasting.
So I’m offering this space for anyone who wants to leave a message for him. Two rules: Do NOT mention the name of any of his former podcasts or online identities (call him X), and do NOT talk specifically about what X does for a living or where. This is to protect him. Any comments that mention either will be edited or declined. And one more thing: Negative or attacking comments will be deleted. This is my house, my rules. Please respect these rules!
So go ahead and leave a message for X!
Update 1 July 2010: At some point I hope to figure out a way for X to reply directly, but for now, he’d like me to tell you that he’s reading your messages and appreciates them.
Update 3 July 2010: I’ve received a message for you all from X. I’m posting it on his behalf to add a layer of protection:
Listeners, Fans and Friends…
I want you all to know that I am fine. I did not lose my job. I got a strong slap on the wrist. The previous name and podcast are gone for good. However, I will be coming back at some point. I’ll let you know when I do.
I cannot thank you enough for all the wonderful messages, tweets, e-mails and all the kind words you all posted here on Arthur’s site. I appreciate you all more than you know. It feels good to have so many people concerned about me and caring about me.
A big THANK YOU to you all! I really appreciate it!
This post will remain at the top of this site for a few more days to make it easy to find for anyone else who wants to comment.Thank you all for helping me to give X some support. This is why it’s called a community!
Mr. X you introduced me to Arthur through the interwebs and a lot of other broadcasters. Thank you. Give my best to you know who.
When I first started podcasting, I knew absolutely nothing about the gay podcasting community. You reached out and asked me to be on a group show and it changed my whole life.
It would take many hands to count all of the wonderful friends that I have met as a direct result of you introducing me to this community.
To say that you will be missed does a tremendous disservice to the enormous feeling of loss I will feel without you around.
Dearest Mr X.
it is very sad to see you go!
I knew the day would come, but I presumed it would be because of snow on the lines; NOT online harassment.
All i can say; is that if someone knows who it is, then Legal action their asses off. What a disgusting disgrace to the human species (& gay community) these people are.
I thank you mr X for getting me excited about podcasting, and then being SO supportive and encouraging after I started too. You ALWAYS had time for people – no matter who they were.
Imagine “To Sir, With Love” playing in the background ….
And people argue how this type of thing is in the past. You, my friend, are a living testament to institutionalized homophobia.
Through you and your work I have had many laughs, many warm moments and met so many amazing people. I do believe you and your work were a fixed point — a hinge-pin — in the fabric of the podcast continuum.
You informed, engaged, challenged and gave so much to so many, including myself. I will always thank you for that. Sadly, I was always to shy to join the chat in person. I always said I would, but not that chance is gone.
So I say good-bye and honor you with these parting words … six and a half, uncut, versatile top.
Dear Friend, it is with genuine sadness I see you go. You were one of the first I discovered, and I’ve hung around every since. Sometimes it was mundane, sometimes sweet, sometimes thought provoking, riveting and unexpected -it was Always enjoyed. Like a lot of others, I am thoroughly disgusted by whatever pathetic psychosis motivates such harassment. It shows us we all have to work together to truly make this the “Land of the Free” where such contemptible BS is impossible. Again, Thanks Friend 🙂
Hello Mr. X. How are you? I hope all is well. I have been a listener for years. I wished I had been a more pro-active listener and had conversed with you more often. You came into my life when I was learning the ins and outs of being gay. until that point all I knew was the bar/club scene and didn’t really have anybody to look up to that was “normal” and by that I mean I didn’t know what relationships were really all about. Through the years I learned of other shows that also showed me that there are other guys out there who also have the same dreams and ambitions as I do. The respect I have for you and others is overwhelmingly more than how I can put into words. I am sad to see you go. I am sadder that this world has people who can live with themselves knowing that they have robbed us of a special person and robbed these who are in that place in their lives like I once was. “Happy trails to you, until we meet again.
Happy trails to you, keep smilin’ until then”…
X! I’ve been an absent presence and I couldn’t regret it more. Like Arthur said, you’re just about the last person in the world who could “deserve” such horrible treatment. I loved your show so much and I cannot thank you enough for all the time and heart you put into the community.
All the best in whatever you do.
Kellen in Arlington <3
I am terribly sad that something so unnecessary and hateful could happen to such a sweetheart.
My first appearance on a podcast was a group show. I was so scared, but you were amazingly supportive and I had a great time. i met a number of great people through doing those shows. I also learned a great deal about a lot of things.
I have grown to care about you a ton and I will miss starting my day with your show. I hope you will keep in touch with the people you have been so we can get updates. i will worry!
Be safe, stay loving, stay funny, and continue to be yourself.
There is nothing I can say that hasn’t been said already. Although I know you primarily as a listener, you always had a knack for making everyone feel like a friend. The interwebs will be a little less fun and a lot more lonely without you. I wish you and your other half all the best in future endeavors. You are an amazing man. Thanks for the laughs and thought provoking conversations. xXx
This situation is so ridiculous. To think that some dumbass has so much free time on their hands that they can search out obscure internet content and use it to try and carry out their own misguided crusade is maddening. With that said…
Mr. X I will truly miss your podcasts. I have been listening for over 2 years and have enjoyed every show, from the, “what we did over the weekend” to the amazing group shows and my all time favorite, those short lived live video shows with you and the boyfriend getting drunk that would sometimes go on for hours.
Good luck in whatever you choose to do and just remmeber that karma will come back and get the person that did this to you.
I was wondering what was going on when the feed and website failed. This is outrageous. This is insane. What do we all do without him?
Thank you X. I’ve listened and watched you and W from the beginning and will miss you both.
At least part of the problem is that I think we get lulled into the notion that things are getting “better”, and I suppose they are, but that for every three steps forward, one ends up taking two steps back. x’s situation epitomizes this quite clearly, I’m afraid.
I’m sorry people are stupid. We will miss you. Whoe ever you are. I am so sorry for stupid people. I hate to see a good person get hurt by stupid stuff. I am sending my best to you and you will have a great future. F**K thos jerks.
ps. things aren’t getting better in Texas, they are getting worse.
Mr X knows how I feel and I sent an email privately but I want to echo all of the above comments as well.
Massive hugs from the crazy redhead in Indiana
This is really sad news. You introduced me to the world of podcasts back in 2005. More importantly you gave voice to many in the GLBT community who wanted to share their life experiences and form friendships that ended up spanning the globe. I’m not ready to say goodbye just yet and hope to hear your voice in another venue.
Erick n DC
Please stay in touch! You have my email.
I can hardly understand what is going on here! That something like this would even be possible leaves me speechless. Thank you dear X andY of course for all the wonderful things you did for us. I miss you terribly. If only you liked fish a bit more I could try to offer you a job at the gutting table at the cannery and political asylum in the Faroe Islands…
Love you dear and thank you
This saddens and frightens me to no end. I live in a country where people were forced out of jobs, forbidden to work or publish and finally sent to the death camps and killed, just because they were different. Everytime someone uses jokingly the term “sound-nazi” I crinch. To me this has a totally different connotation. What happened here to x is clearly an act of fascism and shows how thin the layer of acceptance and “normality” is we walk on.
Hate and negativity have taken away from us one of our finest. From today the world is poorer and less colourful.
Goodbye my friend and thank you for everything. Thanks to Amerinz as well for offering us the opportunity to show X and his other half our love and respect.
Michael in Stgt
Dear Mr. X,
It saddens me to no end that this happened to you and that we will no longer hear your voice. You’ve touched so many lives and if it wasn’t for you, many of us wouldn’t be in this wonderful community. Mere words cannot express my deepest sympathies and my heart goes out to you and Mr. Y.
It sickens me to know that this sort of thing still happens here and to people who do not deserve it. Because of one person, a whole community has to suffer, but none more than you. I chant for the day when we no longer have to fear for our jobs because of who we love.
I always enjoyed your shows, from the short to the long. They made me laugh, cry, think, and were always pure entertainment. You and Mr. Y were always so adorable together and I found myself wishing for a love like you two have. You will be very much missed, but definitely not forgotten!
I hope perhaps one day you’ll be able to return. It may be a long time from now, but just know that you’ll always have fans and friends ready and willing to welcome you back with open arms.
I’m sad I never got the chance to get to know you better outside of listening to your show, but I am grateful for the few short times we did chat.
Take care, Mr. X. I wish you nothing but the best. You’re a great guy and you’ll be sorely missed.
The measure of a man is his heart, respect for others, sharing of wisdom, a hand of charity and deep want to sacrifice. Sacrifice what is needed to achieve what is necessary. The fact that a person is judged on whom he loves and not that he loves is a crime and still boggles my mind. While there are real problems in this world worth tackling people amaze me at what they deem important.
I have known you from afar, as many have. Enjoying your thoughts and taking to heart every laugh to every serious moment, understanding the conversation needs to continue. It’s only through these conversations that people’s minds will change. You helped start something very important. Too often people are portrayed as the stereo typical characters that TV and the movies put forth. You helped usher in some changes, letting people know the truth. It stares them in the face with utter simplicity yet it takes monumental efforts to start their minds along a new path. All that needs to be known is this ….. We are all human beings, we have so much more in common than the one thing they dwell on that is different.
I feel selfish. Selfish that it feels like I am having something taken from me. It pales in comparison to what you are enduring. I hope you find peace and serenity. That you understand your life is filled with wonderful things, like people who care. Though I hope there is a way for you to return to us all, I feel I am already better for having shared in what you gave us.
I thank you for your generosity of time, of thought, of emotion and of care that showed every time you spoke. I hope there is a way to continue the connection you made with so many. I will patiently wait ….. And try to continue what you helped start. May I do it half as well as you have.
The 9th Amendment
“The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”
Mr. X. I hope you are getting legal council to sue their ass.
I have just recently heard about this whole situation and am absolutely appalled that this sort of thing still goes on, and that you have had no choice but to leave. I don’t know X well, but felt I should chip in with my support and sympathies. Some people are clearly total dicks.
Your voice will be missed, but I continue to cherish you as my friend. I don’t know how things will be without you as the navel of our universe. You have been and will continue to be an inspiration to many.
Anything I can do to help, just let me know.
Most of what I could say has been said already, but let me be redundant here.
It is truly sad that as much as love seems to have no bounds, it would also seem that hatred does as well.
I was always grateful for everything you did for the podcasting community, and more specifically, for my show. I enjoyed the debates and the discussions and all the craziness that occurred.
Here’s hoping that things will shift and you will be able to reestablish a presence in one way or another on the internet. In the meantime, you have my email (I hope) if you need someone to talk to.
Thanks for everything, Mr. X.
Dear Mr. X,
I discovered You just recently and You are already gone! Too soon.
You gave me joy and made me discover a lot about everything.
If I start podcasting seriously it will be thanks to You.
I am so furious about what is happening to You!
I know there was a risk in what You were doing and not everything was safe and consequent. We all knew it could happen. But after discovering your error You tried to do things more consciously. Even after that they have been mean to You.
I just don’t understand why people have the need to blackmail others. This censure is going further than just hate. It is punishing freedom of speech. Punishing all of us, all of those using the internet. It is disgraceful.
I hope You are getting all the support from those personally close to You. And love You. We surely do love You.
That the whole situation is not going to be a disaster. And You are going to be able to step forward. Regain your life. And happiness.
Thank You for being there.
These developments produce some very strong emotions in me. First I am very angry that they could have happened. This should not be happening to you. You have done nothing wrong. It is just so unfair.
Furthermore, I am very sad that I may be losing a friend. You have made frequent visits to me on my morning commute to work. I am going to miss you in my ears. Also Pride 48 and gay podcasting in general is going to miss you.
I would like to say I am sorry for the pranks I played on you. Some were childish. I hope none were lasting.
Finally, I would like to express my hope that this situation quickly resolves itself in a manner that is totally good for you.
Pingback: 2Political Podcast » Blog Archive » 2PP032 – 30 June 2010
Well, it was very sudden and very upsetting.
One can only hope that the person that has done this, gets what is due them! So sad that one human can be so nasty to another human, no matter what their differences are. But that is the life we live with.
There is one good thing about being gay and trampled upon from time to time. I have developed a great sense of what is right and what is wrong, what is just and what is unjust. That is at least something positive we can maybe take away from this whole experience.
Mr X, I am really going to miss you and I think you are going to miss us too and it is this forced parting that is the hardest part.
You probably have my email address, please if you want to feel free to use it, it would be nice to stay in touch if only to talk about certain manufacturers products 🙂
What can I say, love you, miss you, take care of yourself and rise above it all, your better than them, much better.
P.S. From another that also has a pseudonym!
X, you are truly a pioneer, not just because you were at the beginning, but because you took this one-sided medium and made it interactive. The group shows were the building blocks of this community, where everybody met and became friends. Your regular shows, a testament to your life. The community has a hole in it’s heart. We love you.
Arthur, thank you for this outlet. You are a cornerstone of this community too.
X, good luck in your future creative endeavors. Be safe, until the world we live in is.
In preparing for a roadtrip, I was looking for some entertainment to keep me occupied and I decided to download some of these new-fangled “podcasts” I kept hearing about. The first one I ever listened to was some guy talking about getting new carpet installed in his condo, and all I could think was “WTF”? This was July of 2006. Now it’s four years later and this same guy has, quite sadly and unfairly, been shut down… but not before welcoming me and so many other folks who said “I can do that” into the fold. The amount of well-wishes that appear before mine (and are sure to appear after) say it all – look how many lives he’s touched.
Good luck, X – know that we’ll always be here for you. 🙁
Dear MR. X,
I’m was a newer listener to your podcast and I really feel like we area all being robbed because of this craziness. I will truly miss your perspective on life. I hope one day you can return to share your wonderful life with us.
X- it’s truly terrifying and shameful what happened to you. I’m so sad to see you leave a hobby you loved, especially under these circumstances. You always welcomed us “newbies” into the podcasting world, and I can’t imagine you not podcasting anymore. I’ll miss you, sweetheart. You’ll always be the podfather and inventor of iTunes to me.
It wasn’t all that long ago that I had the honor and pleasure to join X and a few others in a live Skype chat during a recent show. It was my first and as nervous as I may have been, the experience was an all-around positive one.
Knowing that the hatred-driven actions of one person has stolen you from our lives and hearts brings tears to my face. This is simply unfair and I think I echo all that has been written here when I join so many of my new found friends in wishing this devil his due.
You will be missed, but never forgotten.
Be well. Take Care. Reach out by email or a twitter DM anytime.
Though I did not listen to your show as often as I wanted to (amazing how time gets away from us!) hearing about this development makes me sick. It makes me sick in the pit of my stomach.
I hope that one day you will return. I hope that on that day you can do so without fear. And I hope that that day is sooner than any of us can imagine now.
I also hope, that maybe, in some small way, this lets all of us, gay, straight…whatever, take a step back and see what is really important. Put a fire under our feet to really try and change something in this world. If we don’t stand up to these monsters (which is what they truly are) then who will? I truly believe that everything happens for a reason, and maybe the reason is to promote action by all of us. I’m not sure what that action could or should be, but I think that it is out there, somewhere.
I wish you and Mr. Y all of the best. I hope that you can find some peace with this, and that if legal action is available you take that opportunity.
Finally, as a straight girl I just want you to know (though I’m sure you already do) that we are not all ass holes.
When I first started listening to podcasts, Mr X’s was one first gay podcasts I found. His show was like listening to an old friend talk. Just what I needed at the time. A warm friendly voice to help me through a tough time.
He mentioned other podcasts that I soon added to my iTunes subscription list. His website was a valuable resource for a new listener.
I’m so thankful to have discovered Mr X’s podcast. I am so sorry that he is having this problem now. The person who exposed him at his job has hurt not only Mr X but the gay community.
I already emailed this to you, but I’ll copy it here so everyone else can see (:
I hope you feel all the love here! I’m sure you do. It’s amazing to feel accepted and wanted and loved from people you’ve never even met. You’ve made a positive impact on so many people’s lives…people you may not even know exist! No matter how difficult this situation gets, always keep that in mind and look toward the positive side.
Karma’s a bitch. So if someone did it on purpose they’ve got it coming. (And not in a good way..!)
We love ya and are thinkin’ of ya!
Oh sorry I forgot.
8″, thick, cut, versatile.
I really could post the message to Mr. X that I wanted to on here so I did it over on http://www.turnipstyle.com/for-mr-x/ – not in an attempt at all to highjack this posting – just was limited…
Mr. X, echoing all of what has said, I add my voice.
Thank you so much for everything you have done and for all the people you have brought together and all the fires you have lit.
Don’t let your fire go out…
What is there to say – this is tragically unfair and despicable. However that is not what this note is about – it is about you and what you did for the podcasting community – specifically the gay podcasting community and how you touched my life and so many others.
I got my first iPod in the fall of 2005 and wondered what all the fuss was about these things called podcasts. Well I typed gay into the iTunes and your show (and very few others popped up). I downloaded it and the next morning on my commute to work on the “L” in Chicago – I fired up my shiny new iPod and hit play….. and was welcomed into your world with open arms.
You were podcasting everyday back then and you quickly became my company on my way to work. The few times you did not podcast (which back then was rare); it was as if my train buddy did not show up for work. Then I got the nerve up to call into your group show, was welcomed as only you could and became a pretty regular guest for awhile.
To be honest, you became a constant in my life – with you I went through the break-up with my husband, I moved from Chicago to NYC and established a new life, I joined Tim on Terminally Single for a bit, I traveled all over the globe with my job – and though it all – you were there.
Now years later – I have many other “little shows” to listen too, but you will always be my first, the best and the podfather.
Thank you for enriching my life and it is a big loss that you can not do for someone what you have done for me and so many other.
This is not goodbye – but until we meet again……..
I want to echo the words of everyone else, and to add that X was a mentor when I began podcasting. It’s quite possible that without his support, advice and friendship, my own podcast may not have survived and this site wouldn’t be here. I owe him a lot.
So I was glad to read today in the message from X they he’ll be back at some stage. That’s fantastic news!
I was thinking yesterday that while this whole incident is another low point for this community, the response and support for X reflected in these comments has brought out the positive. So, thank you all for restoring my bruised faith.
And, especially, thanks X for, well, everything!
Been trying to think of the right words to say. Mr X was one of the first of many Podcasts I started listening to. I can say the weekends won’t be the same without your little show to listen to. Here’s to a Fabulous return or at least a great chance for you to reconnect with all your adoring fans!
Although I have been listening to many podcasts prior to Mr. X, I found him a year ago when I started to listen to his group podcasts. Oh man I couldent wait till Friday at work to listen to them because I would laugh my self crazy. But then right when i started to get into that podcast and his personal journals he went into self retirement. I was so overjoyed when he came back, but then to be taken away so abrupt. You got me into other podcasts such as Foul Monkeys, Ramble, Amerinz, BlueJeansGuy, and of course Big Fatty. For that I am grateful. You were the PodGod for me with your political talk, and your “Johnny Carson” host-like group shows and for that, will be missed by me. Its a sad day.
Thank you Mr. X for telling us the result. I was quite worried about you, and angry about the magnitude of the injustice that seemed about to happen.
When you return in another guise, I guess Arthur will tell us how to find you, and you’ll shortly thereafter have as many listeners as you did before.
Mr. X. Seek legal council now! You did not do anything wrong. I would be quiting my job and talking to lawyer if I were in your position.
Looking forward to the day you will be back!
X I will miss you after almost 4 years. Glad I finally found out what happened….again. I hope you are back soon.
I just want to thank you sincerely for all that you have done! I live in Colorado Springs – home to focus on the family. I spend my days immersed in anti-gay shi@, it has been a wonderful breath of fresh air to be a part of your life. You help me to recharge and keep moving forward.
I have no words to say how much I will miss your “say it with me”.
PS – if you can – please find a way to let us know how things are going – we care!!!!!
Been out of town, returned to this news – WTF!! We know you are strong, you made it through a flood, kicked smoking, upgraded to high def, got a new car – we’ve been with you through it all! We’ll be there when v2.0 returns! Thanks again for everything and keep in touch.
You and Ramble were the first two pod cast I started listening to. I will greatly miss hearing you. I enjoyed listening to all the adventures in your life and those with the boyfriend. The group shows were legendary.
This saddens and angers me to no end. Our community has come so far and yet we stuck in the dark ages in some ways. I truly believe that Karma alway balances things. People who do ugly things will get their own.
I wish you all the best and with any luck you will be back at it some day.
A listening friend in DC.