The Anonymous WordPress bloggers are at it again. Their postings are taking a more hysterical than ever tone, denouncing me as a “hypocrite” because two years ago I criticized WordPress for suspending a blog, even though a year later I began blogging on WordPress. No, that does not make me a hypocrite because they ignore the fact that things have changed on WordPress over the last few years and they now take a much more pro free speech position than they previously did, in my opinion.
The implication, which provides us with an interesting window into the way these folks (the anonymous folks who trash me, that is) think, seems to be that if someone belongs to an organization or even accepts a certain blog host, they need to be completely positive and never question or criticize anything about it. They imply that if someone criticizes something, they should not be a part of it. That is very cult-like thinking. Non-cultic organizations as well as blog hosts welcome criticism from their own members and do not oust or exclude critics from being part of the organization or in this case, the blog host.
I stand by my criticism that the suspension of Wayward Radish’s Search for Survivors blog was unjust because they gave into the demands of people who wanted to silence a whistleblower. This, however, does not mean that I shouldn’t blog on WordPress myself. In fact, sometimes the best way to counteract such a smear campaign is to set up a blog that counters the smear campaign which is something WordPress recommends people do if they have a disagreement with what another blogger has written and that is what I have done.
In fact, there seem to have been some changes in WordPress policy over the last year or so that are encouraging. Currently, according to what Mark wrote me back in November 2010, their policy is that they will not remove blogs that are complained about as “defamatory” without a court order. That policy was apparently not in place when Wayward Radish’s blog was suspended as it was removed in response to threats but as far as I know, there was no court order to have it removed. Later, in November, 2010 Ronald Federici named the Search For Survivors blog which was suspended by WordPress but now hosted by Project DoD, in a lawsuit. However, there were never any court orders to have it removed and in March 2011, the suit was dismissed, the case never even went into depositions or a trial and no connection between the Search for Survivors blog and any of the defendants he named was ever demonstrated.
The fact is that like most blog hosts, WordPress is not perfect, but that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t also have positives, especially now that they have changed their policy to be more pro free speech. Of course, that kind of nuanced thinking and flexibility is foreign the black and white cultic thinkers who denounce me and believe that everything has to be all good or all bad and that people should rigidly and inflexibly hold to one position or else they are a “hypocrite”. No, there is a difference between being a hypocrite and being open and flexible to changes.
It is most interesting that they denounce my change of mind about TFT, which occurred more than seven years ago, but not so surprising since these are the same people who defend therapy gurus I have criticized and no amount of evidence I present to the contrary will change their minds. It is not hypocritical for me to criticize TFT at all. Apparently someone seems to have a confusion about a legitimate and thoughtful change of mind about a practice, which is what occurred with me, and hypocrisy. According to such people, anything less than slavish, inflexible, unquestioning devotion, ignoring of any evidence that comes to light and continuing to stay with something in spite of the evidence against it, is “hypocrisy” — a very strange definition but one that one might expect from cult like mentalities. Apparently they have not read Robert Cialdini’s work on how people are manipulated to stay in highly damaging situations and relationships by appeals to commitment and consistency, ignoring the fact that changing ones mind about something can sometimes be the wisest thing to do.
And no, the academic community has not had a bad reaction to my change of mind about TFT and other things at all. On the contrary, every time I have been asked about it by faculty, they have applauded my actions, openness to actual evidence and changes I have made and if anything, it has helped, not harmed me.