Mike Antonovich has killed our subsidiary site Antonovich.blogspot.com.
In early July we read in Steve Lopez’s LA Times column that LA County Supervisor Mike Antonovich sends out phonebook-sized mailings of his favorite news items to several hundred people … an activity paid for by LA County taxpayers. We suggested he get a blog … and we set one up at antonovich.blogspot.com for us to use.
Last week we got this message from Blogspot (aka Blogger aka Google):
We have received a complaint of impersonation concerning your blog antonovich.blogspot.com. Please be aware that the Blogger Terms of Service(http://beta.blogger.com/terms.g) prohibit impersonating any person or entity on a blog.* Thus, it will be necessary for you to update your blog as to not impersonate Mike Antonovich.
Please respond to us by 5pm tomorrow. If we do not hear from you by 8/18/06, we will be forced to delete your blog and terminate your Blogger account.
The message, sadly, was tagged as junk mail and we didn’t see it until after they’d pulled the plug. Antonovich.blogspot.com is dead.
Did Antonovich’s minions make the complaint?
Does anyone else have a motive?
Now we admit the blog wasn’t much … in fact, we haven’t updated it since our July piece. For what it’s worth, Google still has it cached.
We wouldn’t mind the death of our little offspring if Antonovich was going to take our suggestion and use free blogging tools — such as antonovich.blogspot.com — to distribute his missives, thereby saving taxpayers thousands of dollars a year in manpower and copying costs. But we’re guessing that’s not going to happen. Suppressing criticism is much higher on the to-do list.
Google — whose motto is “information wants to be free, except in China” — allows Blogger / Blogspot sites that purport to be written by
… but LA County Supervisors are apparently out of bounds. It’s not for nothing that they’re called the “little kings.” Like kings, they are thin-skinned and brook no dissent.
* We’ve asked Blogger to point us to the “impersonation” clause, since we can’t find it. No response yet. We look forward to a discussion of first amendment speech.
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