Thursday, April 12, 2007

Freedom of Blogger

Something different on this Thursday.

There has been a saga developing about Kat Coble's experience with a "recruiting" "firm," JL Kirk & Associates. Brittney Gilbert at Nashville Is Talking has the play by play run down. I won't say much on this because many others have already said it. What's different about all of this is not the apparent bullying tactics that the law firm used with Kat. I'm sure every day. It's not the practices of putting fear into unemployed people about finding a job. I've been there. I've been to that firm's previous incarnation, Bernard Haldane.

What I am going to say is that I cannot believe Kirk felt like this was a good idea. Here is someone who has posted her honest feelings about an experience that she and her husband had with them. If Kirk felt like she was unfair, they can discuss with her and if she still doesn't agree, then they can change their practices. What this has done has given Kirk publicity, but it's incredibly bad publicity. This has been put on Digg (by me, in the interest of disclosure). Instapundit picked it up. And in fact the verb "Kirk" is starting to gain a little traction. This is a verb with the definition: “to have your reputation ruined for trying to stifle a blogger’s free speech." This also doesn't work very well if you're a "religious organization."

I've also liked how the blog community has come to Kat's defense, and given this story some real legs. It shows a loyalty that I'm glad to participate in. We don't like bullies, and we especially don't like bullies who mess with our friends. And there's power in numbers. And there's a lot of us. Or as this blogger said...

You see, no one likes a bully, but you know who hates a bully more than anyone else? Nerds and geeks and lookie here, they came onto our playground to harass one of our own. We’re all grown up now, we have millions with whom we interact and connect with. We’re no longer relegated to a corner of the cafeteria watching everyone else have fun. Sure, some of us might still look and feel a little awkward in public, but now we know we’re not alone.

We sure as hell don’t like getting picked on.

Newscoma's keeping a running list of who's talking about this.


Rob Cox said...

Her blog is now #9 when you Google JL Kirk Associates. Plus there are two from that are #4 and #5. This should hurt their business.

Malia said...

Here's what I think happened. I went back and read Kat's original post about this (which was like a month ago!) and in the comments section there were a few (3 or 4) comments from people who thanked Kat for the post and indicated that they had subsequently cancelled their "interviews" with JLK. I think someone, most likely the employee who left "the comment", wondered what was going on and decided to do a JLK Google search, found Kat's post, was personally offended by it and mouthed off.

I think it's the employee's fault that all this is happening. (As I said at my place.) And I just read somewhere else that maybe (and it kind of makes sense) that JLK is really doing this because they don't want the employee's response out there for everyone to see. Too bad they apparently didn't know about Google's cache capacity before sending a cease and desist letter!

Tony Arnold said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tony Arnold said...

If JLK's intent was to surpress their own employee's comment then I don't know which was more flawed, their logic or their choice lawyer who went along with it.

Definitely a lawyer more concerned with fees than with their client's best interest.


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