Thursday, February 10, 2005

Welcome to IEBlog Watch

The purpose of IEBlog Watch is to discuss matters arising from articles and comments at the IEBlog. It will also serve as an open forum to talk about Internet Explorer, other web browsers, and web browsing/development issues more generally.

Why did I set this blog up?

I asked the question

How many security vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer have been due to an ActiveX component?
on the IEBlog, as a comment to this post. In order to 'nail down' the question, I added that I was willing to discount the effect of patches instead of vulnerabilities, known vulnerabilities only, and the same vulnerability in different versions of IE. I also said that I wasn't expecting an answer, but I hoped to be proved wrong.

Perhaps ill-advisedly, I chose the screenname "IE==pwned!", which I thought was amusing given that the post was discussing recent remote security vulnerabilities in IE. In any case, regardless of the name, I thought the question itself was perfectly reasonable.

However, not only was my question left unanswered, but it was deleted. I accept all criticism of the username, but I will say that it was in a spirit of fun. However, Bruce Morgan [MSFT], who deleted my post, went on to say:
I found your screen name and your list of leading questions offensive in content and style, not in words.

You jumped in here with no previous commenting history with an offensive name and a list of "do you still beat your wife" style questions.
I don't feel my question was leading, and I gladly (and publicly) offered to let IEBlog change my screenname.

Bruce also commented on anonymity:
BTW, anonymity gets you little respect.

I accord a lot more value to comments from someone who has the courage to link back to a real blog or real email. These comments can be as anti-IE as the person wishes; as long as they are not profane or personally attacking people on the team I won't delete them.

Anonymous comment with no content other than "IE is bad!" (or three paragraphs of "you guys are morons, IE sucks, blah blah blah!") are a dime a dozen. Do that on your own blog all you want. Track back here, I won't delete it.

Otherwise, I treat it like graffiti on the wall and I get rid of it.

I fail to see what the anonymity (or source) of comments has to do with the quality or content of comments. Only accepting criticism from 'known' people seems wrong. It is also pointless, especially as anyone can easily get a blog, let alone email address. I accept that comments that say "IE is bad!" and nothing else should be deleted. I don't think my question falls into that category.

Anyway, I wanted to create a forum, with a strict comments policy to maintain quality, but less censorship than the IEBlog. I will also use my 'status' as a blog owner to post 'non-anonymously' on the IEBlog, hopefully avoiding undue censorship of future comments. Hopefully, along the way, I will build up enough 'karma' that someone can answer my original question:
How many security vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer have been due to an ActiveX component?
as well as lots of other interesting questions, of course!

Comments Policy
  • No profanity of any kind;
  • No personally insulting comments of any kind;
  • Feel free to praise/insult any product, development technique, management strategy, company or the like, but only if you back it up;
  • Keep it on-topic;
  • Make your point once, and once only, unless it is obviously intended to clarify.
I will delete any comments that violate this policy, and also obvious spammers, trolls and flamebaiters, and ban them from future posting if tools to do so are available. I reserve the right to delete other comments too. I will try to explain all deletions, though I can't guarantee this. All comments will be considered to be released under the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License 2.0 unless you specify otherwise, which you are free to do. Of course, all this is in addition to any Blogger comments policy in operation, which will always take precedence over what I have said here.

How can you help?

I recognize that the value of a blog is more often in its comments than its articles. I therefore encourage you to make lots of incisive, insightful comments! This should also be a place to learn about browser functionality, so ask questions (Google first, please!) and hopefully someone will answer. In particular, [MSFT] posters and others with 'vested interests' are extremely welcome to comment - disclosure would be nice but it is by no means mandatory!

You can also post articles here by emailing me at [name of this blog without spaces] at gmail dot com.

Hopefully we can make this an genuinely honest, genuinely open and genuinely useful forum. Let me know what you think.


At 5:51 PM, Anonymous B. Taylor said...

I'm intrigued by your ideas and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

IEBlog strikes me as a rather weak attempt by MS to improve their image in certain circles without actually doing anything. Bruce's comments about offensiveness and anonymity are both bizarre and ridiculous. I wish you luck on your quest.


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