Thoughts to Kathy Sierra

For those of you who were fortunate enough to see the magnificent Kathy Sierra keynote at this year but don’t read her blog, she’s received death threats and sex threats from some anonymous bloggers and comments. It was serious enough that she cancelled a presentation at an upcoming conference, and the police have been informed.

Wikipedia has some updated information on her harassment. Dave Winer, in a remarkably objective post, reckons it’s just a bunch of trolls and that those kind of death threats are nothing new. I think it’s a little too early to tell yet exactly what the hell is going on, but even if it is “just some trolls”, it’s still outrageous behaviour. Be sure to also read her update on the situation if you’re checking out the other links.

Lesson learned: don’t start a Web site that encourages abusive behaviour unless you’re prepared to deal with the consequences. In fact, just don’t start a Web site that encourages abusive behaviour at all. As Kathy herself says, angry and negative people can be bad for you. I wonder whether it was that article that triggered off some power-hungry kid’s frontal lobe.

Godspeed, Kathy. The world needs more people like you. Hopefully whoever made those comments will be punished—and redeem themselves.

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