On the other hand, I notice the same statement has appeared on their blog. So maybe it's real. Or maybe their blog was compromised too.
The really suspicious thing is that they don't seem to have confirmed it to a reporter yet, which presumably they'd be willing to do if they were so eager to spread the news that they tweeted about it.
The Twitter straw man brigade is already making it into "fired for for speaking out against sexism". I'm really hoping Sendgrid doesn't give them their martyr. And I'm also hoping Sendgrid didn't do that just to surrender to the crazy male attack squad that seems to be so vocal and abusive, not to forget criminal.
On a side note, Twitter has really turned into an absolute sewer, with polemic knee-jerk reactions and utter foolishness ruling supreme. I wish it was the idiots on Twitter who were getting fired - both the threatening jerky men as well as the opportunistic feminist ones.
Content-wise, I don't think any service is immune from that - Reddit can be pretty horrible and I was shocked by some of the stuff posted to HN Tuesday & yesterday (though it was quickly cleaned up).
My problem with Twitter is that the brevity and emphasis on the present moment makes for bad social interactions; the faux-urgency of social media in general elevates sensation above substance. It's so easy to get the Internet Hate Machine going, and offers such large ego rewards for people who feel they are able to shape and direct it, that it's become a regular part of discourse. Back in pre-web days when NNTP was in regular use, discussions of contentious subjects were just as vigorous but nowhere near as vicious or reductionist.
Our ability to project our own ideas has significantly outpaced our willingness to consider those of others, it seems.
As was I, but it got taken care of. I still wish people wouldn't have downvoted Richards' comments into oblivion though.
However, what's really different on HN is not that sometimes bad things happen, it's that there are a lot of people here capable of considering a balanced opinion and, perhaps most importantly, willing to question the premise of things. Users on HN often did not simply fall in line behind the stereotypical camps that feed on this kind of issue, and I don't see that same capability for actual thought anywhere on Twitter.
By and large we may disagree (hopefully with civility) on conclusions, and those are productive discussions to have, but we're as a community able to examine the issue as a whole. That's a pretty unique and valuable trait.
I'm still marveling at how ridiculously easy it is to create fake wedge issue drama like this, and all of a sudden it's #teamadria on the one side, and creepy macho assholes on the other, without a single neocortical neuron to share between them.
Oh god, they do. There are certainly dissenting voices but Hacker News has proven itself time and time again to be unable to examine the issue of gender, or more tellingly, unwilling to. These posts disappearing is not a one-off, there have been numerous instances of people flagging 'difficult' posts on HN, so that we can all continue arguing about semi-colons.
Our definition of "often did not" seems different. And the majority of the response that I saw seemed pretty knee-jerk. (Disclaimer, I actively tried to take a balanced look at the issue, and immediately got downvoted into oblivion for it. But over time people seem to be calming down.)
I do try to leave something in such threads. But nobody is reading them for carefully considered takes on the issue.
You still get people trying to shout at each other, but they usually do so from a distance, and not within the community. I'm perfectly happy with that.
HN has moderation (flags/upvotes etc.) but a much less rigid set of curation guidelines (see "Six Degrees of Hacker News"). This results in a much wider set of "well I think HN should be X", and therefore more meta-arguments about the different Xs rather than staying on topic, whatever "topic" means to each individual.
Lots of people who are sick of the juvenile content and comments on Reddit would leave, but there's nowhere to go. Build an awesome community by tolerating absolutely no shit.
Yea, but that seems to just push the problem one degree away..."Quis custodiet ipsos custodes"-type situation. I've been part of a few niche forums over the years that have ruthless moderation, and it's not a fun place to be a lot of the time.
http://paleoplanet69529.yuku.com/ is a forum for primitive skills discussion, and by far the most civil and "adult" forum I've been a part of...I have no idea how they do it.
I love their rules though: http://paleoplanet69529.yuku.com/topic/16448/Welcome-to-the-...
Their funnel is an absolute scream: http://forums.somethingawful.com/showthread.php?threadid=322...
Note: this is not meant to imply somethingawful is for adults. Just that they charge to get in and moderate ruthlessly.
If they're willing to remove stories they don't like do they also promote their friend's projects or squash competitors?
In this case I have some sympathy because they were worried they were spreading false rumors but honestly it does sort of make me think twice about what I read here.
Which HN hates?
While we generally are sensitive and confidential with respect to employee matters, the situation has taken on a public nature.
...is extremely unlike the words usually used by a company dealing with a controversial employment matter. It's more like the puffery used in 419 scams.
That tweet is unsigned, where all others are. They clearly have a well-enforced policy of tweet signing, but the firing tweet has none. FB posts have the same signing--except the post about the firing. The blog and status portal sites have the comment under clear user accounts, so it doesn't look like they're trying to have a unified front on it, as might be implied by unsigned tweets and FB posts.
Don't get me wrong, I don't think it's fake, either. But a healthy dose of caution and skepticism doesn't hurt.
This story is of interest to the community, is directly relevant, and is still being censored. There's not a single post about this on the front page.
I think Steve Jobs was totally different given the impact of his life.
But yeah, the iPod's important too.
I'd wait for a reputable journalist -- someone who actually picks up the phone, or visits SendGrid, and talks to someone there they knew already as a person with corporate authority -- to confirm.
A look at Richards' personal page also shows a CloudFlare DDOS splash page before serving up the site.
The assumption that they're under attack is reasonable. What's true today will remain true tomorrow.
I wonder if this (the possibility of SendGrid's website and every social media account being compromised) isn't the only motive behind the deletions. Maybe the mods are looking to avoid drama or protect Richards? I don't know. If their stated reason is their only motive, will they bring the posts back to the front page once SendGrid confirms?
That is what DoS attacks were originally used for. Hose the target, then run your attack. It was more typical for attacking clients trying to use network services. In this case it's a PR blitz meant to look like an authentic message.
Facebook and Twitter taken over takes a while to get back into the hands of the real owners. If someone got a fake message cached by cloudflare and then took down the backend, it could leave a false message hanging around until the target can get the service restored.
Why the hell would someone do this? Who knows. Probably a dejected neckbeard with mental problems who feels like causing a shitstorm.
Check the author, it's posted by the CEO.
I'm not sure I agree, but still.
In the event that an account was compromised, I'd put money on it being 100% due to a naive user.
People share passwords all the time. Also, if somebody's computer or email account was compromised, chances are that would also give up the credentials for all of the sites.
If they fired her, it's an accurate statement.
What would she sue for?
I don't know if this would stand up in court, but it doesn't have to stand up in court if the lawyers can drag it out long enough. In this particular case, that tips in her favor, because the odds of this case escalating to celebrity status are high. That scenario is every corporate lawyer's nightmare, because with celebrity status comes reliable financial support.
I don't know why they don't do this but I can see why they might not do this.
By stating a reason you then invite questions around the decision and waste time in addressing those questions. By not stating a reason many decisions like this will simply go unquestioned in a "nothing to see here move along" kind of way.
If she has been fired because they're being DDoSed, that's a miserable precedent for anyone who works at a tech company.
Granted you're just saying that _if_ it's because of the DDOS this is inappropriate. I'd agree, but I doubt that's the reason, unless it is just what happened to draw their attention to this.
For what it's worth, I think 'evangelist' is a stupid title and 'advocate' is better. Yeah, 'evangelist' sounds cooler, but evangelists get in your face about unprovable stuff and harass you until you comply - not something you want to evoke in your job title. The standard joke about door-to-door evangelists is that you shut the door in their face.
I totally agree. It feels like a sort of toxic leakage of what should be safely contained in disreputable corners of the internet.
So what you say is possible, and a panicked company might throw an employee overboard, but at the moment (11:13am pt) I still wouldn't rule out account-compromise-and-hoax.
The sentiment around places where "DDOSers" might hang out is pretty heavily against her. Remember, a programmer got fired for a harmless joke, at a programming conference, thanks to an over-zealous "evangelist".
This whole situation is ludicrous.
Switching to Mailgun (for high value stuff) or Amazon SES (for low value/cheap) is pretty easy.
That's from a conversation on the Live Chat option on their site from a few seconds ago.
The feeling of censorship is real, although unintended.
My post on this was deleted as well:
I saw threads on /b/ last night where people were rallying the troops to attack her and everyone associated with her. I really wouldn't be surprised if they managed to compromise a few accounts.
But then in this new age of media, it seems sensationalism is more important than facts presented with civility.
Perhaps I'm uneducated on the topic, but it still seems suspicious.
I can't articulate it well, but for some reason this strikes me as a odd, especially since these stories ended up being true.
On the other hand, there seems to be little other than a few messages about status updates. Even if it seems uncharacteristic, it's looking more and more to be true that she was terminated in a very ugly and public manner.