A chance to say farewell and thank you

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!


2PP005 – 22 April 2009

2PP_Album_art_smallToday’s special days are a little more sobering than usual, but that changes when we go on to our next subject: Teabagging! Once we stop giggling, we talk about what we think is behind it all. It’s not all a liberal rant. That leads on to the Texas governor suggesting secession. We talk about the right’s pandering to the far right and the right’s sudden rediscovery of the First Amendment. After that, it’s a concrete example of a bailed-out bank doing a number on its customers. Comments on a variety of topics—including a voicemail message! The written comments let us expand on those subjects and discuss others—including one on which we disagree. Back in 2 weeks!

Feel free to visit our website, 2political.com, where, you can leave a comment, get the comment line number or our email addresses for the podcast. 2Political episodes will continue to be available through AmeriNZ Podcast for quite awhile, or you can subscribe directly through iTunes (link below), or you can use http://feeds2.feedburner.com/2politicalPodcast.

Link for this episode:
Armenian Martyrs’ Day
Ramblin’ with Roger
Jason’s Blog
Arthur’s AmeriNZ blog

Get 2Poltical Podcast for free on iTunes


First one-star review

The plague of one-star iTunes reviews has finally spread to me—I’m one of the big guys now!

For those of you who don’t know, many podcasters have been hit with intensely negative, usually mean-spirited and sometimes downright offensive reviews on iTunes USA. There are a lot of conspiracy theories flying around, suggesting an organised group is behind them, but the victims are varied enough that I personally doubt it. There are, however, plenty of sick people who get their jollies out of shitting on others, and sometimes they do it to “defend” or “support” podcasters they do like in the warped delusion that tearing others down builds up their favourites.

I really couldn’t care less about iTunes reviews in general: There doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason as to how they affect where on the featured pages a podcast is listed. To me, it’s one of those things that are nice to have, but we all know they’re largely irrelevant.

The coward who left my one-star review has also attacked: Dubious Intent, The LK Today, Terminally Single, Pod Is My Co-Pilot, Mentalwarts Radio, The Power Gay, Manhandled in Montana, Alex and Dean – Gay Men Talking, Big Fatty Online, The Other O Show, They Don’t Know, The Way We See It, ArcherRadio, We’re Mean Because You’re Stupid, Gifilte Fag, Don’t Quit Your Day Job and The Direct Approach with British John. I list them all so you can go to iTunes USA and give them all 5-star reviews and symbolically give the finger to this asshole. Another strategy is to click on his user name and click “no” to the question “Was this review helpful?” for all his reviews. I’ve already done that, but I can’t leave reviews in the iTunes USA store.

By the way, the coward likes: John Stossel’s audio book (that figures), Good Morning America – Video (figures, it’s shallow), ABC World News – Audio (okay, that surprised me: Isn’t ABC and Charlie Gibson part of the “Liberal Conspiracy”?), The Onion Radio News, the movie “Mr. and Mrs. Smith” (I suppose someone had to like it), “Fight Club” (violent, of course) and a podcast called LGBT Heroes (because he thinks the host is hot).

So, this person is like an immature fourteen year old and seems full of himself. Reading his reviews is like watching paint dry or the grass grow. His self-indulgence comes across a bit too much—he actually thinks this is interesting? Give me a break. He’s just plain crazy.

That slamming is actually drawn from the one-star reviews he’s left. Here’s the thing: If someone hates these shows so much, why does he listen to them?! He moans endlessly about sound quality, but how much, exactly, did he pay for any of them? Nothing. Podcasters buy what they can afford, and the coward isn’t contributing a cent toward what podcasters produce in their spare time. If he doesn’t like the content or the sound quality, he should do what most people do: Unsubscribe. It’s like he has a personal vendetta because a given podcaster doesn’t fit his mental (perfect word…) image of what a great podcast is and should sound like.

What that coward apparently doesn’t realise is that neither subscription nor listening are mandatory. Doesn’t suit you? No worries—move on. But why trash people and their podcast just because you’re frustrated and bitter with life? Okay, so what if you’re a miserable failure—don’t take it out on others.

The review the coward left me actually starts out fine: “Good audio, but this show is way too political.” I’m glad he likes my audio (but, hilariously, he hates Daniel Brewer’s!! Maybe he needs a hearing aide?). The majority of my shows have not been political, but if he thinks it’s “way too political,” he’s entitled to his opinion. Then the kicker: “This moonbat of a host is just plain crazy.” The word “moonbat” is a derogatory term that wingnuts (a derrogatory term derived from “rightwing nuts”) use to describe anyone who’s a bit to the left of Attila the Hun. Calling me “just plain crazy”, however, is offensive and, typically, incredibly juvenile and immature.

I’m well aware that the coward probably hopes for reactions. I doubt, however, that he will ever see this (I’m guessing he has trouble reading). I call him a coward because, like all bullies, he does his damage from behind a veil of anonymity, like KKK robes. But I taunt him anyway because bullies can’t stand it when their victims stand up to them. It’d be great if I could get him to attack me here, force him out of the closet he’s hiding in—oops!—I’m sure he’s far too deeply in the closest for that.

This plague has gone on long enough. Many of the podcasters I know are angry that fuckwads like this can pollute iTunes reviews with their filth, but no one knows what to do about it. I’ve had countless conversations with podcasters who have been victimised. Some have been deeply hurt by what can only be called viscious personal attacks. This has got to stop.

I have some suggestions:

First, we should mark these bullshit one-star reviews with “No” they’re not helpful, as I said above (writing 5-star reviews, as appropriate, couldn’t hurt, either). Don’t forget to mark ALL their other reviews as not helpful, even when they’re positive.

Finally, we should demand that iTunes not allow these egregious attack reviews and that it provide a better and faster mechanism for removing such reviews. If we can’t get iTunes to act more responsibly, then we need to begin work on an alternative delivery method that will let listeners bypass iTunes altogether.

As for me, I’ve said what I wanted to say. I can’t do anything about the coward’s review because, since I’m not registered with the iTunes USA store, I can’t report it as offensive. But I’ll add one last thing: The guy’s obviously stupid, too: He left the review in the wrong place. Clearly, he doesn’t listen to podcasts closely or read carefully where he’s leaving his poison, or he’d know he left it for my old feed, which soon will be going away. I hope he does, too. But at least his stupidity gave me a good laugh.


Out with the old, in with the new…

Happy New Year! We’re twelve hours into the New Year as I write, and 2009 is pretty good so far.

However, my US Listener Line is no more, gone from lack of use. I haven’t decided yet if I’ll replace it (your comments and suggestions about that are welcome). I’ll let you know what I decide here and in the Podcast which, by the way, will be returning soon.

Have a good, safe and prosperous 2009!


Time to change feeds

As part of the change to my podcast hosting, it’s now time to change the feed you subscribe to. On June 20 (early June 19, USA time) I’ll be downgrading my Podomatic account from paid to free. Given all the problems with Podomatic lately, it’s entirely possible that it may become impossible to download my episodes hosted on Podomatic, at least in the short term.

All podcast episodes are listed here, and new ones are posted here first. So, to see if a new episode is posted, you can check here. While you’re here, you can subscribe to the RSS2 feed, as listed on the right-hand sidebar.

However, for best results—and to help protect you in case I move the host again—I suggest using my Feedburner feed:


To re-subscribe in iTunes, go to the “Advanced” menu, and go to the second item, “Subscribe to Podcast”, as shown below:

In the pop-up window that will open, enter the Feedburner address and click “OK”:

Your iTunes will then check for the most recent episode for this feed.

There will eventually be an option to subscribe through iTunes, and it’s possible the old feed will still work, so you may choose to wait. I’ll post a short test message sometime Friday morning (my time), which is another way you can tell if the iTunes feed is still working. As I said earlier, you can always check the new website to see if there have been any new episodes posted, and you can always listen to them online or manually download them. And, if I dump Podomatic completely, I’ll let you know first.

That’s it. Feel free to email me if this doesn’t make sense.


Progress report

So far, so good.

I’ve been uploading my MP3 files, which has been going alright. But getting WordPress and podPress to play nicely was another matter entirely. It took me parts of three days to get it all running, that and several different Google searches before I found the answer I needed: The filenames all had spaces, which Linux doesn’t like, and the stats don’t work with the host for some reason.

I basically cut-and-pasted the original shownotes from my blog, changing very little. Mostly, I deleted subscription links to Apple iTunes, because that may be changing, and to Podomatic because that WILL be changing. I also linked to local graphics (mostly). The dates and times of posting are the same as the originals on my blog.

However, all comments are still at my original blog; there was really no way to copy them and, in any case, that just didn’t seem right.

As of this writing, I’ve completed posting the first ten episodes. Everything I just said will be true about the rest of the episodes, too; if anything’s different about later episodes’ shownotes, I’ll do another update.