Reluctant Freedom Fighter


A week or so ago, I wrote a post. It was a complaint post (shocking, I know) to WordPress about their recent changes in which I may have used some naughty words and portrayed them like this:


Somehow, as things often do on the internet, my post took off all on its own without any prompting by me. People started sharing it and tweeting it and commenting on it. On Monday, the high point of its popularity, it got almost 1000 views. As of this moment, it has 362 likes and over 400 comments. It was reblogged 37 times. It was spread on Facebook and retweeted 23 times.

Somehow, this shy, reluctant fish became a figurehead in the “we’re not happy, WordPress” movement. I inadvertently became a freedom fighter and a slacktivist leader. Well, so be it. I stand by my words (even though I did edit that post about a million times).

I do not like all this notoriety. I didn’t ask for it and I don’t want it. While some people may blog for fame and fortune and glory, I do not. I blog because I have nowhere else to put the words that I pry out of my brain in order to get some peace until they come crowding back into my consciousness and the whole goddamn thing starts all over again.

I have been Freshly Pressed four times and each time, it makes me uncomfortable. I find it awkward to have so many strangers traipsing through my virtual living room. They don’t wipe their feet. They eat all my cookies. They read the one post that they came here to read, and leave again to find the next flash in the pan internet sensation.

This past week has been much the same experience. It was like being Freshly Pressed without being Freshly Pressed. With the exception of one comment–which was quite gentlemanly retracted so that all was happy in FOGland again–I have gotten nothing but overwhelming support. Comment after comment says something to the effect of “I thought I was the only one! Thank you!”

The WordPress forums are full of complaints, too. I’ve been reading them since this whole thing began. People all over the kingdom are complaining about the same things I complained about, albeit sometimes with more tact and less swearing.

Yet, even with all this tweeting and reblogging (thank y’all for that), nothing has really changed. In all those 400 plus comments on my post, there’s not one from the powers that be. I have no indication that anyone at WordPress even read it, and we still have no link to the notifications archive in the dumbass drop down comments menu that they’re still forcing down out throats and “you’ll damn well like it.”

It seems to be the way of the world these days. Companies hook us with their service, then they completely change their paradigm (look at me using corporate speak) without a care for their most ardent and loyal subscriber base.

What did we really accomplish with all this complaining? Did anything actually change? As is generally the case with slacktivism, it was hot for a few days and now, it’s died down again. I’m still getting the odd comment on that post and people are still complaining in the forum threads (even though WordPress keeps closing them), but the hubbub has died away and we’re still not really any closer to getting our old, beloved format back.

To all the new followers I’ve gotten over the past week, I’d like to extend a warm welcome. Have a poke about and read my shenanigans. You’ll find little coherency here since I write about everything and nothing in particular. Please, forgive me for not knowing what to do with this “movement” now, since this whole spokesperson thing is quite new to me. It’ll take some time to get my sea legs back.


So, now what? What do you think? This is a democracy after all. Where do we go from here?