Editorial interference at the Tea Makers

The only Tea Makers contributor who has ever altered the sense of another contributor’s work has now cemented that right in their own exclusive hands.

The following memo went out this afternoon from Alphonse Ouimet:

From now on writers with editing privileges will have them removed.

This means that from today, you will not be able to edit anyone’s posts but your own, and no comments but those on your posts.

Look, this has nothing to do with your editing, this is a flattening out of the editorial hierarchy. Previously there were a few people who were writer/editors, a few who were just writers, and it wasn’t always clear who was what and who could do what, and how were they chosen anyway?

So from now on, you will concentrate on writing, and I’ll take on this editor role myself.

When this switched from Blogger to WordPress and onto its own domain, I asked for and got the right to edit everybody’s posts. I’ve used it daily – for the sole purpose of improving HTML and fixing copy errors. As I’ve explained before, until today every post in the new WordPress Tea Makers has had good code and edited copy.

I have no knowledge of any other contributor’s ever touching anybody’s work. Hence, “writers with editing privileges” really just meant me and Ouimet in practice.

I hunt down and delete personal attacks and a few other kinds of comments. (A comment that seemed legally defamatory bit the dust recently, for example.)

The only contributor who has ever rewritten another contributor’s work is Alphonse Ouimet, who, not coincidentally, has waged a guerrilla war behind the scenes to permit any and all comments. Alphonse Ouimet has never, at any time, acknowledged that the comment section is healthier now, or even that HTML and basic spelling are better.

So the contributor who barely contributes anything, thinks even the most poisonous and hurtful comments are permissible, and rewriters other writers’ work has now cemented editorial power in their own cloister. The only editor who can’t be trusted will now “take on [the] editor role.”

This is another way of saying you can make any comments you want and your crap HTML and shitty spelling are permitted.

What’s really been happening is that Alphonse Ouimet and I have been at loggerheads for weeks about these very topics. Ouimet barely contributes anything and let all sorts of shit fester for years, and now has turned the screws for a final time.

Funny, I never would have imagined this site had enough of a budget to hire Frank Magid. What makes you think I wouldn’t report what you’re doing, Ouimet?