I wrote this page in April 2005, three years after I wrote the majority of this story, and over five years after I lived it. I hope it still has any sort of relevance, because when I wrote it, I tried to give as much context as I could to give the average reader an idea of the brief, shining spark of buffoonery through which I'd lived. Now, as I read through it again, I wish I'd downloaded copies of iSourceline and SourceRunner before the sites went away.
After years of experience with the Net, though, you'd think I would remember that electronic writing is not as ephemeral as feels. Usenet, for example, will probably be archived in its near-entirety until the Internet ceases to exist; even SourceRunner is partially archived at the Wayback Machine. (There are still a few fun pages archived here and here, if you're in a diggin' mood.)
I just got a feel for other side of that, which is why I'm updating this story. Here's feedback I received today:
So, huh! It's a shame something I posted got some random guy in some ill-defined amount of unpleasantness, but really it's just Rambo reaching out and bothering someone else from the, er, well if not grave exactly, the...uh. From obscurity? I've lost the metaphor, but nevermind. This is why the press release in page 3 has the edits in it. For all I know this isn't actually the same guy, but eh. It's not like I'm the New York Times, here.
Zomp took a quick look around the net and had this to say:
The iSourceline piece mentions a "sportsworld media"; there is such a thing, but it's a british tv company... i'm guessing it was no more real than anything else Jeff Rambo talked about.
Starting to wonder if I'm going to find out sometime in 2008 that I made all this up.
Sorta epilogueish epilogue epilogue
As I write this bit, it's currently August 2008, and I so far have no evidence that I fabricated this story. I do, however, have evidence that more people do self-searches on the net, as the person now named "Matt M—." in these pages contacted me earlier this year and politely asked me to remove his name from them. He cited the same reason as [guy], namely, searches by prospective employers might find this story and count it as a mark against him. I'm a sucker for people striking a reasonable tone (and really, in psuedo-anonymous Internet writing, a belligerent tone will more often than not produce an unpleasant backlash anyway), so I obliged.
It seems kind of a shame, though. It was seven years ago; why not consider it lessons learned and move on? I don't mean for M—, but for employers who might find the story. It's not like they'd unearth some evidence of a felony or something, just a bad business decision made nearly a decade ago. As I wrote half a page and three years ago, the internet is not as ephemeral as it feels. As a computer geek I used to think of this as impressive. But now I wonder if it's opressive. It's almost like having a searchable, public database of every answering machine message you've ever left someone.
Also, some time ago--really don't remember when at this point--Rambo himself sent me mail. Ah, this is so far from being anything I care about anymore, I am not sure I even bothered to save it. But as I recall, his tone was fairly amused. It basically came to: yeah, those were some crazy times, but I was a kid doing what kids do. I'd maintain my opinion that his execution thoroughly sucked, but I should probably give credit that he had the drive to get websites put together and send out press releases. Probably more tenacity than I would've had. Or have.
Sheese I am clearly not cut out for the angry Internet rant style anymore. If I ran into an iSourceline today, my whole writing on the topic would probably come down to: "eh, people are people."