Poached like an Egg

March 28, 2005 | 54 comments
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Over at Millenial Star, Davis Bell has posted a few thoughts on the phenomenon of blog poaching. This follows up on the protests that some blogs receive at regular intervals about blog poaching.

Davis’s post may be kind of weak itself, but he does point to the interesting, broader issue. What is blog poaching, exactly? And assuming that it can be defined, why is it an issue? That is, why do some readers object to following up on a post on Blog A, with a post on Blog B?

This objection seems particularly surprising given that cross-blog discussion is an everyday event within the blogosphere at large. One pretty much can’t read a blog without running into “Instapundit says X and I agree because Y” or “Josh Marshall says X and I disagree because Y.” Entire inter-blog discussions, like the recent Volokh torture brouhaha, are based on bloggers posting follow-ups and replies to each other on their own blogs. So why is this practice called “poaching” in the bloggernacle?

And if this poaching is really objectionable, then what rules should govern it? Are there limits on follow up posts, and if so, what are they? May bloggernackers rightly claim topical preemption? (And what’s the statute of limitations on that claim?)

The anti-poaching advocates must also explain why they think that some alternate action is preferable. That is, is it really more useful to put slightly-related discussions in the comments of another blog? And doesn’t that alternate act risk incurring the wrath of the blog gods for the (greater?) sin of threadjacking?

For example, if Davis Bell posts about the theology of the Kinderhook plates and I read that post and have an idea for a discussion of the legal aspects of the Kinderhook plates, where _is_ the proper forum for that contribution? If I post it on M* as a comment, I’m likely to be accused of threadjacking. If I post it on T & S as a post, I’ll incur the wrath of the Steve-bot script. (Is that better or worse than the blog gods?) What’s a reader to do?

Finally, let’s ask, is the concept of poaching really useful for the minature marketplace of ideas that is the bloggernacle? If we’re giving Steve Evans monopoly control over all discussions of Zelph for the next 30 days, is the bloggernacle as a whole enriched by that? (What does Steve think of Eldredge v. Ashcroft, anyway?)

Anyway, I suppose that these questions have different answers, and I’m curious as to what our readers think.

Note: Remember to post all comments here, and not on Davis’s post. :P

54 Responses to Poached like an Egg

  1. Davis Bell on March 28, 2005 at 3:58 pm

    Wow. Kaimi’s taking this to a whole new level: he poached a post about poaching.

  2. Kaimi on March 28, 2005 at 3:58 pm

    Steve,

    Your script seems to be broken. This has been up for ten minutes, and still no comment. You should get someone to take a look at it. A non-working PERL script is like a day without sunshine . . .

  3. Geoff B on March 28, 2005 at 4:10 pm

    I would have to agree with Kaimi that the rest of the blog world regularly takes ideas from other blogs and posts them with their own thoughts. And they don’t consider it posting as long as credit is given to the original blog. The source of the accepted style on this is probably Instapundit, which is nothing if not one big poached egg. But the point is that Instapundit always credits the original source, just as we do here in the bloggernacle. I think this whole poaching thing is nothing but a poached egg in a teapot, so to speak.

  4. Sarah on March 28, 2005 at 4:15 pm

    I think that blog “poaching” is probably a problem (heh) most often when you have several concurrent circumstances:

    — Blog A brings up a topic,
    — Blog A is small (by comparison) or new, and
    — Blog A has comments enabled.
    AND
    — Blog B publishes a whole new take on the original post,
    — This is formated and written in a way that would have been acceptable in the Blog A comment section,
    — Blog B is big (by comparison) or more established (or in this case, more generalized/mainstream), and
    — Blog B also has comments enabled.

    If any of those elements are missing, it’s probably not poaching. If there is no comment function on the “poached” blog, then you’re commenting the only way you can. If your blog is smaller, most people will see the original post before the “poached” one, and so forth. In this view, Glenn Reynolds is incapable of committing an act of genuine poaching, as am I — he has no comment function, and I get about 100 visitors in any given week.

    However, I never would have seen the BCC post in question had I not seen this post on T&S… that complicates matters greatly. I’ll be late to work if I say anything more, though, and I’m sure ten other comments have been written while I wrote this. ^_^

  5. Steve Evans on March 28, 2005 at 4:16 pm

    Geoff B., that’s easy for you to say — no one’s ever tried to steal your ideas.

    Kaimi is off-base I think in where the offense lieth. To me, it is all about giving credit where credit is due. For a bloggernacle giant like T&S, it behooveth the permabloggers to share the popularity a good idea deserves. That’s all. Nate did a good job with it today, Kaimi less so.

  6. Davis Bell on March 28, 2005 at 4:19 pm

    Kaimi,

    The issue isn’t writing about a topic that someone has already covered. We all do that. The issue, rather, is stealing a current discussion from another (often smaller) blog. The courteous thing would have been to comment on John H’s post, and then maybe link to it, rather than writing your own one day later.

  7. Dave on March 28, 2005 at 4:29 pm

    Plagiarism is a form of flattery; properly cited, it is an acceptable form of flattery. So what’s wrong with poaching as long as a link is provided back to the original post? In fact, a “poaching index” (posts poached over total posts, times one hundred) would be a great measure of which blogs post the most original and interesting material.

  8. D. Fletcher on March 28, 2005 at 4:50 pm

    I think it’s pretty simple. There are too many blogs, and not enough new ideas. Blogging was fun while it lasted, but it has gotten … exhausting.

  9. Kaimi on March 28, 2005 at 4:55 pm

    Random notes:

    1. There have been prior discussions of this topic, see, e.g., http://www.timesandseasons.org/index.php?p=1833#comment-40260 .

    2. Dave, that index would be a great idea.

    3. Based on sometimes looking at public stats of other blogs, I think that front-page mention at T & S can drive two or three hundred readers to a blog. It depends on many things, including the number of competing links and posts at T & S.

    4. I usually start off with a direct acknowledgement — “Bryce is saying X at Millenial Star . . . ” I left this step out for a specific reason in the Polygamy post — it’s set up with a little rhetorical surprise in paragraph two, and I didn’t want to spoil it. If I had wanted to do that, I would have just titled it “Dealing with Abraham’s Polygamy” and started out “Over at BCC, John Hatch discusses Joseph Smith’s polygamy. That raises the question . . . ”

    Actually, that’s my usual style. But I decided to mix things up a little stylistically, and work in a minor surprise in paragraph two. So sue me.

    p.s. Steve, can you really say that Nate did a good job, an hour after calling him a poacher? I’m looking up “chutzpah” in the dictionary to see if your picture is there, pal.

  10. William Morris on March 28, 2005 at 5:07 pm

    Kaimi:

    I see nothing wrong with what you did. The point is you linked to the post that you were responding to/riffing on. That’s enough.

    And, FWIW:

    The T&S blogalanche ain’t what it used to be.

  11. Steve Evans on March 28, 2005 at 5:08 pm

    “Steve, can you really say that Nate did a good job, an hour after calling him a poacher?”

    Yes. Such is my gift to the world — guilt-free hypocrisy. Kinda like how you feel no guilt about poaching your own blog (point #1 of your comment)….

    :)

  12. Nate Oman on March 28, 2005 at 5:09 pm

    The bloggernacle is an odd corner of the blogosphere in that there is a much greater emphasis on comments than on other blogs. The assumption is that conversation occurs in the comments rather than between posts. This leads to claims about poaching etc.

    As a T&S blogger I often feel as though I am damned if I do damned if I don’t with regard to other blogs. If I don’t link to discussions on other blogs, I get labeld as being a bad bloggernacker who is unwilling to participate in the community and direct T&S traffic to smaller sites, etc. etc. etc. I have had several people say this to me in off line contexts.

    On the other hand, if I read another post and have some thoughts in response that I turn into a T&S post (which incidentally will probably boost traffic to the smaller blog), I am a poacher.

    So then the solution, I am told, is to simply place a link to the other blog’s discussion on T&S but put my thoughts into the comments section of the other blog. Then, of course, the complaints will come in about how T&S doesn’t have any content but just provides links. A variation on this theme is the complaint that a link in the Notes from All Over section doesn’t generate enough traffic, etc. etc. Again, these are complaints that have been made to me offline.

    So then the solution, is to post things at T&S in which I never linked to or acknowledge other blogs. But that, of course, leads to the accusation that I unfairly ignore the rest of the bloggernacle.

    Which leads to the final solution: namely that blogs ought not to reference one another for fear of poaching, but we all ought to read all of the blogs and post in the comments section. In this situation, however, you lose out on the benefits of having an actual network of discussions, etc. etc.

    My conclusion: Ignore charges of poaching. Read as much of what is interesting as you have time to do. Respond to what you find interesting either in the comments section or as another post. It doesn’t make all that much difference, and Steve is going to think that you are a rotten blogger regardless of what you do so why worry about it.

  13. Steve Evans on March 28, 2005 at 5:13 pm

    Nate, I don’t think you’re a rotten blogger. And I like your omnivorous approach — I think people should be curious and energetic about ideas and publish and write as much as they can. My cries of poaching are much more of a TIC reminder to the PTB here that T&Sers are minor Nacle celebs.

  14. Derek on March 28, 2005 at 5:14 pm

    The problem of threadjacking is solved. (Anyone who doubts me can try to threadjack a discussion over at Slashdot.)

    As for poaching, turnabout is always fair play!

  15. Davis Bell on March 28, 2005 at 5:29 pm

    I reiterate: the issue is not citation. It is one of co-opting discussion for your blog that someone else started. Kaimi’s polygamy post didn’t really take all that new or inventive of an approach to the existing discussion at BCC; he could easily have posted it in a shorter form on the comments at BCC. If I recall correctly. the Zelph case was an even more egregious example of this.

  16. Kaimi on March 28, 2005 at 5:50 pm

    Davis,

    Thanks, I’m feeling the love. “Kaimi’s polygamy post didn’t really take all that new or inventive of an approach to the existing discussion at BCC”? Excellent. That’s my goal, you know — to write and post bland, uninteresting tripe. Apparently it’s only poaching if it sucks. Nice to know.

    “Zelph was an even more egregious example”?

    Umm, you mean the post where I highly recommended John’s discussion and directed readers to go look at it? The post where I said that John’s discussion was “not-to-be-missed . . . very interesting, and highlights some of the tensions and questions relating to Joseph Smith’s prophetic calling, modern scientific theories, and apologist work attempting to reconcile the two.”?

    (See T & S Zelph traffic director at http://www.timesandseasons.org/index.php?p=1110 ).

    My own post was all of a paragraph in length, and had no substantive content whatsoever — it was a traffic driver, pure and simple. I didn’t say “read my thoughts on Zelph,” I didn’t even lay out any thoughts on Zelph — I said “read what John said about Zelph.” And that’s poaching? (Incidentally, that Zelph thread got a huge number of comments at BCC.)

  17. D. Fletcher on March 28, 2005 at 6:13 pm

    My basic problem with blog-poaching came up on that Zelph post — I’m forced to have two conversations at once. And one doesn’t know who’s read which blog, and knows all of its contents. I ended up answering some questions on one blog that were raised on the other. I don’t think there’s any solution to the proliferation of blogs, but if others are like me, pretty soon they just shut up and don’t comment at all. Which is a shame.

  18. J. Stapley on March 28, 2005 at 6:16 pm

    The BCC post is pushing 100 comments. The T&S post is pushing 50. Conclusion: Poach away…unless it is my blog.

  19. A. Greenwood on March 28, 2005 at 6:16 pm

    Perhaps the solution is that on posts that do nothing but drive traffic, one should disable comments?

    Part of the problem, though, is that some readers may go to some sites on the bloggernacle and not others. Some people may read a discussion on one site that they wouldn’t read on another.

  20. Ryan Bell on March 28, 2005 at 6:31 pm

    This is all a bunch of useless whining. Accept T&S for what it is, and learn to live with it, acknowledging that it does far more good for others in the bloggernacle than it hurts us.

    As for Kaimi himself, there is no figure in the bloggernacle who has done more for little blogs. It smacks of ingratitude to blame him for somehow wanting to pad discussion stats (is that really something that’s going to motivate him? Kaimi’s desperate to start a discussion with no substantive input in his own that will hopefully garner 50 comments?), when, in the last year, he has put up literally hundreds of links to smaller blogs’ posts and announced the creation of many others. When I was at a small blog, all our high-traffic days came from some link posted at T&S, probably 90% of which were placed by– you guessed it– Kaimi. So if the price you pay is that a few little comments are siphoned off to another discussion that’s not on your own precious blog, so be it. You’re still a lot better off.

    As for the topic of poaching itself, this is a useless concept without any accepted definition that appears to be employed without consistency and against those whose motives are usually not likely self-serving.

  21. Davis Bell on March 28, 2005 at 6:37 pm

    Kaimi,

    I didn’t mean to be insulting; my apologies. I was simply trying to point out that your post was relevant enough to John’s original post that it would have fit in perfectly as a comment (rather than be completely new or unrelated, which would require a seperate post). Further, I don’t think my language is any more inflammatory than, “Davis’s post may be kind of weak itself . . .”

    As far as Zelph, you are right and I was wrong. (I couldn’t remember what happened, and was too lazy to check; that’s why I added the “If I recall correctly.” Still, I should have checked.) I only remembered a brand new discussion thread breaking out on T&S that should have taken place at BCC. You do a great job of sending traffic to lesser-known places in the Nacle.

    I still stick to my point on the larger issue, as exemplified by the polygamy case. I don’t really think this is that big or serious of an issue; I just saw it and decided to poke fun of it. And Steve paid me $500.

    I do like Adam’s idea of shutting off comment on a “traffic driver.”

  22. Davis Bell on March 28, 2005 at 6:45 pm

    Ryan,

    Why so dismissive? Maybe it’s whining (one could also call it highlighting an issue, but that depends on your take, I guess). As far as useless — why?

    Agreed that Kaimi has done more than most — perhaps any — to help little blogs. I wrote that in my last comment. And, as good as Kaimi is about sharing the wealth, of course he’s going to want to stimulate traffic and discussion on his blog. We all do.

    Why is it ingrateful to point out something you don’t like done by someone who has helped you in the past?

    No one maintains that T&S hurts the nacle more than it helps it.

    This very post by Kaimi was an effort to define poaching, and several have taken stabs at doing so.

  23. Geoff Johnston on March 28, 2005 at 7:36 pm

    What is at issue here is traffic and comments. Steve doesn’t want T&S to turn into a gated community like AOL became (and I concur). He wants people getting out on the open ocean and visiting the beautiful Bloggernacle islands out there.

    But when it comes to discussions, I’ve concluded that “poaching” in the ‘Nacle has as much to do with the usability of a blog as anything else. If a comment-provoking post is put up at a less usable blog and mirrored or quoted at a more usable blog the more usable blog will get all the comments. It is simply a convenience issue. For instance, my old version of New Cool Thang on Blogger was modified enough to make it more usable than un-modified Blogger-using blogs, therefore I tended to get more comments than unmodified Blogger blogs got. I recently bit the bullet, bought my URL, and relaunched New Cool Thang on my own server (largely at the prodding of Jonathan over at Splendid Sun). The result was that my first (sort of controversial) post after launching has already generated a T&S-like 120+ comments. Why all the action now? My new blog is just a lot more usable.

    (And that folks is what you call a win-win comment. Make a real and valid point but get a ton of marketing in while you’re at it!)

  24. Steve Evans on March 28, 2005 at 8:02 pm

    Good job, Geoff. The gated community metaphor is just about right, for what I was thinking.

  25. Dave on March 28, 2005 at 8:34 pm

    I hope no one actually thinks Steve’s poaching remarks are complaints! Getting a blog post picked up by T&S is like getting a story picked up by AP — it’s the best thing that can happen to a post. The only time I get irritated is when a borrower doesn’t give a live link straight to the blog post that got the idea rolling. And since some folks seem to be naming names, just for the record I’ll note that while not all T&Sers take a daily walk around the Bloggernacle (do you? do I?), Nate and Kaimi certainly get around more than most and have always been good linkers.

  26. Kaimi on March 28, 2005 at 9:09 pm

    Thanks, guys, this is moving forward.

    Davis, I apologize for my little jab (“Davis’s post may be kind of weak itself”). I meant it as a bit of a retort to the poaching charge, and also as a sort of self-parody (since my own usual form is “Davis’s post is interesting, and raises a broader point . . . “). But I think the joke was lost on all but me.

    So anyway, our splendid little war is over (I think), and we can all go back to our blogs and discuss SSM and abortion nonstop like we usually do. Right?

    (I wonder if Davis-and-Steve vs Kaimi is going to show up as an option in “best war” in the next bloggie awards.)

  27. A. Greenwood on March 29, 2005 at 12:08 am

    When was the last time we discussed SSM or abortion? Just curious.

  28. Clark on March 29, 2005 at 2:13 am

    Doesn’t the worry presuppose that the value of a blog is how many comments you have? Why the focus on comments? The best posts often have few comments and many of the 200+ comment threads here have in my opinion frequently been less than illuminating.

    I don’t quite understand the equating value and comments. Indeed lots of blogs disable comments entirely.

  29. Bryce I on March 29, 2005 at 7:23 am

    The Slashcode crowd have already chimed in, so I’ll insert my obligatory plug for trackback/pingback usage.

    You folks on Blogger can ignore this comment.

  30. nate oman on March 29, 2005 at 8:48 am

    What Clark said.

  31. a random John on March 29, 2005 at 9:32 am

    Derek,

    Thank you for joining the swelling chorus that is calling for Slashcode at T&S! It will probably never happen, but not because it isn’t the right thing to do.

    Remember, Slashcode will make Steve’s comments better!

  32. Davis Bell on March 29, 2005 at 10:47 am

    Clark/Nate:

    I don’t think the focus is on comments per se (although it’s tempting to fall into that mindset). Rather, the focus is — or ought to be — on discussion. In John H’s polygamy post — the post that started all of this — he posed a series of questions; his intent was to spur discourse and learn from the way others have wrestled with the issue of polygamy. Thus, co-opting that discussion undermines the fundamental objective of his post.

  33. Steve Evans on March 29, 2005 at 10:50 am

    “Remember, Slashcode will make Steve’s comments better! ”

    -3 (Flamebait)

  34. Nate Oman on March 29, 2005 at 11:28 am

    Davis: If another post generates comments and discussion, then I don’t see that the goal of discussion qua discussion has been undermined. What has been undermined is the traffic to one site generated by the presence of the discussion on that site. I can undertand the desire for more eyeballs on your site, but this is not exactly the same thing as an olympian concern with the purity of discussion.

  35. Davis Bell on March 29, 2005 at 12:46 pm

    Nate qua Nate,

    I disagree. A discussion that is occurring at two different places is much harder to follow, and much less productive, than a discussion that occurs in one place.

  36. A. Greenwood on March 29, 2005 at 1:26 pm

    You assume, Davis Bell, that you would get the same amount of discussion either way. That’s not the case.

  37. Davis Bell on March 29, 2005 at 1:31 pm

    Adam Greenwood,

    You are absolutely right; that’s where the community-minded part comes in. If you are at a big blog, and see an interesting discussion at a smaller blog, you have two options:

    You can use your big blog to send readers to the smaller blog, who will then enrich the discussion at the smaller blog (and who wouldn’t have found it without the help of the bigger blog). This is exactly what you did with your last post, linking to Geoff’s.

    Or, you can co-opt the discussion and start your own up at your big blog. This discussion will no doubt include readers who wouldn’t have gone to the smaller blog, so in a sense you’re not really taking anything from the smaller blog (although in a sense you are, since you’re using their idea to stimulate discussion at your blog). However, given that many people read multiple blogs, it’s likely that some people will bail on the discussion at the small blog for the one at the big blog, or at the very least split time, cutting down on their participation.

  38. Davis Bell on March 29, 2005 at 1:33 pm

    Adam,

    Aren’t we at the point where we can address one another without using last names?

    Love,

    Davis

  39. Steve Evans on March 29, 2005 at 1:41 pm

    Davis Bell,

    I think it’s also a mistake to think that discussions on a given topic will be identical no matter the forum. A thread at, say, FMH will have a different tone and different path than a thread at M* for example.

  40. A. Greenwood on March 29, 2005 at 1:44 pm

    Mr. Bell,

    No.

    Love,

    Mr. Greenwood.

  41. Brett on March 29, 2005 at 1:55 pm

    I don’t see a problem with blog “poaching” at all. I feel once you put your ideas out into cyberspace without any copyrights attached, anything is fair game. If you’re so uptight about people mooching off your ideas, then blogging isn’t the right medium for you to express yourself. That’s my take on it. Peace.

  42. Davis Bell on March 29, 2005 at 2:41 pm

    Brett,

    For the umpteenth time, the issue (at lest my issue) isn’t with taking someone’s idea.

    Steve,

    You’re right, they won’t be.

    Mr. Adam Greenwood, Esquire (aka A-Wood, A-Dawg, G-wood, The Green Machine),

    Okay. I can live with that.

    Love,

    Mr. Davis Bell

  43. A. Greenwood on March 29, 2005 at 2:44 pm

    I’ve never even shook your hand.

  44. Davis Bell on March 29, 2005 at 2:55 pm

    Let’s cybershake hands.

  45. A. Greenwood on March 29, 2005 at 3:02 pm

    Can’t. Shaking hands spreads germs.

  46. Aaron Brown on March 29, 2005 at 11:17 pm

    For what it’s worth (probably nothing), the phenomenon of blog-poaching, at least in my case, has a completely different origin, intent and function than any of those mentioned above.

    Typically, I will compose a post (or at least have one partially composed in my head), and before I get a chance to actually post it, I read something in the Bloggernacle that is similar, or occasionally identical, to what I am about to say. I then feel an obligation to modify my post and reference the other Bloggernacle comment. My reasons are simple:

    (1) I don’t want people to think I’m ripping off someone else’s idea without attribution. Better to throw a bone to the other blogger, even if I know that I really thought of the idea first; and

    (2) I am horribly insecure, and want my readers to recognize that I really am well-read in the Bloggernacle, having never missed a comment since T&S’s inception (yeah, right).

    Of course this all probably makes no sense to anyone, since I haven’t posted at BCC in months. I keep meaning to start up again. Maybe if Kaimi will link to BCC in “Notes from all over” and announce a profound post from Aaron B BEFORE I actually put it up, this will serve as a motivator for me to get off my ass.

    Aaron B

  47. a random John on March 30, 2005 at 8:33 am

    Has anyone read the liner notes to Robert Palmer’s Greatest Hits? He makes an attempt at explaining how he plagarized someone else’s song without knowing it. I believe the song was “Doctor, Doctor Gimmie the News”. In any case there is another song that came out at the same time that was similar. He initially claimed to have been unaware of the other song. Then he was told that it was recorded in the same facility he used while making his album. He figures he must have walked by, heard the chorus, and it stuck in his head. Later he thought the words stuck in his head were his own and wrote a song around them.

    The same thing seems to happen here. Someone mentions a difficult issue in a post. In the comments people discuss the need for a forum to discuss that issue. Then suddenly a post springs up on another blog addressing the issue of a need for a forum in general. At this point there are so many blogs and so many posts that I can’t keep track of my own posts, much less remember where I read someone else’s post. It seems that attribution if you know your source is a fine idea. Forgiveness of those that don’t remember you as a source is probably a good idea as well.

  48. Kaimi on March 30, 2005 at 11:13 am

    Okay, I almost posted this comment yesterday, then refrained, but the issue is still bugging me, so I’m just going to post it —

    At the very same time that Davis Bell was explaining his theory of poaching on this thread (it’s all about keeping comments on the original thread, see comments 32 & 35), Davis’s own co-blogger Ben Spackman (who I don’t wish to criticize) posted a follow-up to the very same BCC polygamy post that I followed up on (with the result that Davis, Steve, and others accused me of poaching).

    A lively conversation has followed at M* on Ben’s post, with one of the very first participants being Mr. Davis Bell. And there hasn’t been a peep about Davis’s theory (explained here) that “these conversations should be held at the original site.” (There’s been no sign of Steve’s poaching-bot, either.) I don’t see any principled reason why Davis’s theory ought to apply to me, but not to his own co-bloggers. So I’m wondering why he isn’t chastising Ben for breaking off a conversation and taking it to M* rather than continuing it on the original site.

    This isn’t meant to sound like a criticism of Ben’s post. I continue to believe that such follow-up posts can be valuable contributions.

    But I would like to know how a proponent of the Davis Bell theory of poaching can differentiate between T & S poaching and M*’s apparent fair use. Is there really a discernable standard at work here?

  49. Steve Evans on March 30, 2005 at 11:19 am

    Kaimi, the difference is that nobody reads Millennial Star! Not anyone important, anyways…

  50. Ben S. on March 30, 2005 at 11:36 am

    Hey now. Let the FMH-labeled “white-bread” blog alone, you mean lawyer…

    I posted mine because a) it was, technically, a different topic and b) BCC tends to focus on problems and I want to look for solutions and suggestions.

  51. Frank McIntyre on March 30, 2005 at 11:37 am

    Steve Evans = not important. Check.

  52. Ryan Bell on March 30, 2005 at 11:38 am

    By important, you mean . . . apostate?

  53. Steve Evans on March 30, 2005 at 12:01 pm

    by important, I meant Jim F. Sheesh!

  54. Kaimi on March 30, 2005 at 1:09 pm

    Ben,

    You’re just fine by my own definition of poaching. It’s your co-blogger’s more stringent definition you need to watch out for!

    Steve,

    No one important reads the ‘nacle, period. So I don’t see how that can be a distinguishing factor.