Server Maintenance

I made a few changes to the settings in Apache today to try and resolve some issues with memory usage. If you notice any odd behavior from the site, please let me know.

Also, my virtual server will be moved on Friday from a hosting center in St. Louis to one in Dallas to resolve some problems with frequent downtime. I’ll be updating the DNS entries in advance, but you may experience a few days of site unavailability in the meantime. If you do, just be patient as the DNS changes work their way around the Interweb.

A New Direction for Broadband Bytes

Some of you have probably noticed that the Broadband Bytes feature hasn’t been appearing on the website since March 17. There’s two reasons for this: it takes a large chunk of my Saturday to put it together (thus why it was frequently published late) and I haven’t been getting paid for it. My personal financial situation now demands that more of my time be spent earning a living, so free time is at a premium. All the same, I run into stories worth sharing on a regular basis. So do Mike and Jonathan.

To that end, I setup a Twitter account, @FreeUTOPIA, to publish those articles as we find them. It’s going to be powered by Phil Windley’s code used by the most excellent @utahpolitics. If you’re not using Twitter, that’s okay; I’m going to setup the Twitter Tools plugin to publish those tweets on a daily basis. It should be ready to go by tomorrow.

If you have any questions, comments, or rude noises, sound off in the comments.

First FreeUTOPIA Podcast This Saturday

The first FreeUTOPIA podcast will be recorded live this Saturday Feburary 14 at 1:30PM. You can listen in using Teamspeak and we may even take some “callers”. The conversation will be moderated, but Teamspeak does support text chat. To join in, connect to and join the Podcast channel.

If you can questions you’d like me to ask during the podcast or topics you’d like us to discuss, post them in the comments or use Twitter with the #freeutopia hashtag.

A Note to All Commenters

I thought the last post on this topic would have summed it up, but apparently not. I even tried to inject a little humor into the conversation so that it wouldn’t sound like I’m being a jerk or overreacting. Apparently that went in one ear and right out the other, so now it’s time to lay it all out.

To date, I’ve used a very light hand with comments both on blog posts and on the forum. I haven’t edited or deleted any comment from the site and have allowed the obvious sock puppets and trolls to do as they please, content to let the behavior and content speak for itself. I’ve never outed an anonymous commenter either, even if they probably deserved it. I think I’ve given everyone a lot of latitude to do more-or-less whatever they want around here.

All that said, I’ve got a problem with some of the piling on that some of you have engaged in. It’s not okay to continuously, over the course of months, misrepresent someone’s clearly stated position. I especially don’t like it when you push someone’s buttons over and over to get them to flip out. That’s grade school stuff, especially when you try and make them out to be the bad guy when it happens. I recently had to call crap on someone for continuing to do it and I hate that it came to that.

I’m also not looking to preach to the choir around here. That’s why I’ve used a light hand on comments and forum posts. I want both people who agree with me and disagree with me to feel welcome to say their piece. I want to be corrected when I have something wrong, something that several service providers have been gracious enough to do. When there’s roving gangs looking to purge out whatever heresy it is that they’re objecting to, that process gets ruined. Remember back before the Broadweave sale was approved and there were commenters on both sides of the issue? That’s what I’m talking about.

Guys, chill out. If all you want to do is insult other commenters, go back to 4chan where you belong. If you’ve been afraid to comment because of the trolls, ignore them. Post anyway. Don’t let them intimidate you. Good heavens, you’re grown adults. It’s time to start acting the part.

I’m not singling anyone out here. Too many have been guilty of this at some point or another to even try naming names. It’s time to move on and stop being childish. I’m not going to start moderating comments or blocking users. I’m just going to ignore anyone who proves less-than-useful in their contributions and would encourage everyone else to do the same. I spend too much time working on this site (most of it for free, I might add) to be a babysitter. If you don’t like what I’m doing, feel free to spend two and a half years building up your own blog and contacts because I don’t need your crap.

Note: Comments are closed on this post. If you have a problem with it, feel free to e-mail me, complain on your blog or whatever it is that makes you feel better.

Coming Soon: The FreeUTOPIA Podcast

It’s time to take to the digital “airwaves” here at FreeUTOPIA. The other night, I decided it wouldn’t be a bad idea to run a regular podcast to highlight service providers, talk about UTOPIA and discuss the state of telecommunictions in general. I’m working on lining up a guest for February and have one lined up for March.

When looking around for the best way to do it, I found that, of all things, TeamSpeak is a pretty darn good platform. The software is available for Windows, Mac and Linux, it supports recording and moderation, plus there’s a text chat feature. Listeners can ask questions in text chat or even be given temporary speaking privileges to ask questions just like a caller to a radio show.

If you have a show or guest idea (or would like to be a guest yourself), send me an e-mail or use the #freeutopia tag on Twitter.