Archive of UserLand's first discussion group, started October 5, 1998.

Re: Asking Tim

Author:Tim O'Reilly
Posted:9/20/2000; 5:58:07 PM
Topic:Asking Tim
Msg #:21559 (In response to 21540)
Prev/Next:21558 / 21560

You said:

The RSS episode says that O'Reilly will do exactly what it wants, in private, without consulting with companies it partners with. If you want to correct that behavior, I would be happy to help. If not, UserLand is certainly not the last company to get burned for trusting your company. That needs to be addressed, publicly Tim. I understand that you didn't want that, but sorry, I don't make deals to cover this kind of stuff up.

It has been addressed, publically and privately, and the story that doesn't match up is yours, Dave. If you were excluded from anything (and I don't know that you were), it was by a group of people who you know better than I do, yet you keep making it out to be an O'Reilly company plot. Rael Dornfest of O'Reilly is only one of twelve people who worked on RSS 1.0, and if they worked without including you, that's between you and them. As I hear the story from them, they *did* include you, until you started flaming them and left the mailing list. At which point, it's disingenuous to claim that the work on the proposed RSS 1.0 spec was done without including you. Again, as I hear it, when the idea of writing a spec for integrating RDF and namespaces into RSS was first proposed, you encouraged it. You just didn't like it when the group got behind it, and proposed that it be called RSS 1.0.

Even then, if you'd rejoined the group, and expressed your concerns, you might have been able to heal the split. But you remained on the outside, flamed people, and started accusing me of somehow engineering the whole thing, when I didn't even know about it till after you started blaming me for it!

As I've said repeatedly, I was not privy to the details of any of this, and I don't know why you keep laying it my doorstep. Please take it up with the actual people who were working on the project, none of whom were doing so under my direction, and certainly not under my control.

When you throw around cheap accusations like "UserLand is certainly not the last company to get burned for trusting your company", you're not practicing "professional and productive discourse" but mudslinging. To suggest that I'm trying to cover something up is also mudslinging. Every time we've gone into details on the various things you have laid at my doorstep, it's only made you have to back down, because your various allegations are unfounded and off the mark.

A statement like "I don't do deals to cover this kind of stuff up" implies that I've asked you to do so. What I've asked you to do is to ask questions in private before you spout off incorrect facts in public. You like to think of yourself as a journalist, and what I suggest is the essence of journalism: check your facts before you publish. And if you get it wrong, apologize. Don't keep trying to make it sound like you never got it wrong. That isn't a coverup; that's common sense.

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