I have had a very limited amount of time to dedicate to the Internet and gaming in the last month, so I thought I’d let you know what I’ve been doing.
The Oatmeal Saga
The main thing I’ve been doing for the last couple of weeks is following the Oatmeal lawsuits saga. It started off as with a website and a lawyer demanding The Oatmeal give them $20,000 because The Oatmeal had written a true blog entry about them a year ago and had left it up. The letter claimed it was defaming the website or some such because the links had been taken down.
But – ha ha! – all the links had not been taken down and The Oatmeal responded with the fairly hilarious Bear Love Good, Cancer Bad campaign. He channeled his contempt for this bogus threat into a charity campaign which has raised a ton of money for cancer research and bear protection.
In the parlance of the Interweb, the lawyer who sent the letter became “butt hurt.” He sued The Oatmeal, the site The Oatmeal was using to do his fundraising, both charities, and a number of other anonymous people. Popehat has done an excellent job of reporting the event and breaks down most of the legal claptrap into layman’s terms.
The really fascinating thing is that, after trying to suppress The Oatmeal’s (true) criticisms of the original website, the lawyer is claiming his campaign is about protecting free speech. To whit, if he doesn’t have the ability to squelch speech he doesn’t like, that is a threat to free speech. I’m sure he would argue its about something different, but that’s how the rest of the world is perceiving the situation. His blindness to this is kind of epic and is a large part of what’s made this sage so gripping.
Also, I haven’t mentioned the lawyer’s name because evidence suggests that he, his wife and his progeny are prolific trolls – divorced from reality – who aggressively seek out and attempt to barrage websites with a mix of crazy and litigation threats. Weird, wild stuff.
By comparison, my adventures in Skyrim are mundane. Killing dragons, assassinating people and turning into a werewolf pale when compared to watching a real life flame occurring live on the Interweb.