The Internet Is Forever

Sarah Hawk
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Today my weekly ramble is more of a sage reminder that the internet plays for keeps. I have been getting more frequent requests than usual from people requesting the removal of posts that they made in the past. The reason is generally one of three. They don’t want their bosses to see that they are struggling with a work related problem. Or they don’t want a client to know that they aren’t the CSS guru that they claimed to be. Or because they don’t want to show up in a Google search (especially if they have been bagging the company).

The internet is forever and it tells tales.

It is very easy to think of the web as anonymous, but it isn’t. If you slate your client in a rash moment, don’t use their name. Chances are they Google themselves every now and then – hell, we all do – and Google just LOVES SitePoint. Don’t write anything that you wouldn’t want put on a billboard. If you need help with a project, no problem, that’s why we’re here, but think about how you ask for it. Move your code to a test site if you need to, rather than linking to your client’s site.

Generally we’ll do what we can to accommodate you, but we just don’t have the time to edit out links from all the posts that you made last month, and we don’t delete threads because someone else may learn from them in the future.

And there ends the lecture.

I have been super busy around the SitePoint forums this week and I’ve done a whole lot of cleaning and organising. In order to further cut down on spam, we have turned off Social Groups. Several unused forums have been removed or merged into others, and the Photography forum has been moved to a more appropriate place. You can read all about the forum sort out here. One thing that I’m very excited about is the latest addition to our fold, the new WordPress forum.

SitePoint forums

Our Facebook Friday deal this week is the best so far. With the release last week of our latest book Create Stunning HTML Email That Just Works, we’re on a bit of an email marketing buzz around here, so this week we’re offering 50% off our famous Email Marketing Kit. Valued at US$197, you can get yours for just $98.50 PLUS free shipping. Our Marketing Manager is quoted as saying “This is the email marketing Bible and we guarantee it will contain everything you need to create killer email marketing campaigns.” But that’s not all… one lucky purchaser will become our weekly winner and receive a $150 Flippa voucher and t-shirt.

Week 2 of our Golden Post Prize Program is over and the winners have been announced. These lucky people have the opportunity to snap up a free copy of our brand new HTML email book, should that take their fancy! There are still two weeks left to run in the competition, so it’s not too late to get a copy yourself.

Hot Topics This Week
If you feel like some light entertainment during your lunch break, have a listen to the inaugural SitePoint ForumCast. The team have done a fantastic job and it’s cool to hear the mix of accents from around the world.

In General Chat they’re talking about a pretty interesting topic – the social skills of web developers (or lack thereof).

That old bug-bear, IE6 support is being discussed in the Web Page Design forum. Drop in and let us know how far you go.

If you go down the open source CMS road for a client, do you think it is your duty to inform them? And if you do, should you charge less? This very topic is being discussed currently in Business and Legal Issues.

That’s more than enough from me this week, so I’ll leave you to it.

Feature image by Chris Roberts from Digital Precision

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  • FunkyDUde

    We all use and benefit from Google, but they have no respect for anyone’s privacy. It’s just not important to them. Look at the latest news about how the Google Streetview cars were “accidentally” equipped with software that could read all the data being sent through unsecured wifi connections.

    Like you say in the post title, “the internet is forever”, it’s better to accept this and be careful, rather than expect Google to change.

  • http://hardy.hemmingway.info TheOriginalH

    Hey Hawk, it looks like you’ve been very busy! On this precise subject (and with regards to social networking), something is being done. I started a thread discussing it here: http://www.sitepoint.com/forums/showthread.php?t=676739

  • http://www.brothercake.com/ brothercake

    Walled-garden social networking sites like Facebook create a false-sense of security when it comes to online privacy – creating the impression that it’s safe to talk about personal things online, when it isn’t safe at all.

    And now we’re seeing a whole generation of people growing up with a blurred sense of the divide between public and private. Maybe they’re right – maybe the divide is genuinely blurred, and it’s middle-aged grumps like me who’ll have to change our perspective.

    Or maybe they’ll just grow up and feel hugely embarrassed of how they acted in the past.

    Like everyone does :)

  • Scathmere

    Until the poles switch