Sunday, February 04, 2018

Mea culpa

Over a week ago I posted information which I believed to be correct at the time, to the effect that an on-line presence named Camestros Felapton was a professor of philosophy at an Australian university.

Felaptron has been a harsh and bitter critic of the so-called Sad Puppies for many years, and I resented how he recently attacked Richard Paolinelli for starting a new writers' group.

Some friends of mine pointed out information to me that indicated Felaptron's identity. I looked at it and thought it checked out, so I posted it.

After a few days - amidst the usual on-line screeching you get if you're not 100 percent politically correct - I realized I may have interpreted something wrong. It took me a few days to parse; I'm self-employed now since my wife and I bought the local newspaper Jan. 1st and my first commitment in time is to my business.

But a few days ago I realized I could not stand behind my original assertion, and I went on Twitter to apologize to both Felaptron and the spouse of the person who I originally named. I asked for their forgiveness, and they were nice enough to accept my apology.

It took me a few days to get back here on the blog, but while accusations were flying I went to disable it so I wouldn't have to moderate comments, and I accidentally did something that kept me from accessing it myself. I finally figured it out this morning.

Ninety-five percent of my time has always been tied up with life in the "real world" and not the looking glass existence of speculative fiction. Now I am self-employed that percentage is almost 100 percent.

Too many people have too much time on their hands. Of course, I'm unhappy that when I stumbled I was piled on, but I do resent being attacked. Even a rat will bite you when you step on it. Some of my on-line "friends" jumped into the fray and said other things I never would have said myself in a million years. Although they are free to exercise their right of free speech and opinion, I thought some things were just in poor taste and unnecessarily abusive.

People who know me and have met me in person think I'm friendly and easy-going, but social media brings out the worst in me- as it does in many people.  I think my subconscious doesn't think these phantoms of the web are "real" and the normal social safeguards don't kick in. It may be a generation thing - I turned 61 a month ago.

In any case, since I made the original post here, I wanted to publish the retraction here, now that I am able. I also went back and deleted the original post and some follow-ups.


  1. Hi Lou, I have the same problem with the ”social safeguards” sometimes. Thank you for the apology, it was the right thing to do and I’m happy you did it.

    Good luck with your newspaper!

  2. Anonymous4:56 PM

    Sorry, you're still a piece of shit and it doesn't look like you've really learned a damn thing. I'm pretty sure you don't get to accuse the people you wronged of "screeching" during an apology, so you can take this hollow BS and cram it where the sun don't shine.

  3. Wow, this is one of the crappiest non-apology-apologies I've ever read. Here's a hint: online behavior is real behavior. You were a weaselly little shit of a person online, because you're a weaselly little shit of a person, period.
    So, kudos, I guess?

  4. Anonymous11:38 AM

    What an absolutely useless, bullshit apology from an absolutely bullshit, useless man. You even go so far as to plead for sympathy for yourself because at 61, the internet is just too hard and confusing for you and you can't be arsed to treat the people you interact with in that space like you actually believe they're human. What a piece of shit you are.


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