Monday, September 29, 2008

My first internet stalker

Back in April I posted about my initial foray into the 33% tax bracket and the shock associated with getting that first bill from the IRS. Add up the local and state taxes and I paid close to 40% of my income to governmental entities last year. The point of the post was to posit the question: how much is enough? When have my societal obligations have been filled? Why is the solution to our nation's ills to raise taxes on individual families while corporations pay next to nothing?

Since then an internet troll named "Jon" has been posting comments on this blog where he calls me an elitist and various other uncomplimentary names. Big deal. But then today this "Jon" went a little too far. On the SurgeXperiences post he writes, "I did a little research", and proceeds to expose my address and the price of my house here in Cleveland (as some sort of asinine explanation for why I need to pay more taxes). Then, inexpicably, he uses my wife's name.

That doesn't happen, buddy. If anyone on this site ever uses my wife's name again or inquires into her private life I will expend all my energy and all my disposable income (according to Jon, this is substantial) to bring the perpetrator to the proper lawful authorities. Now let's all be nice.

31 comments:

Cathy said...

What is wrong with some of these people? I'm sorry you have experienced this.

The internet has changed so much over the last couple of years that it seems folks are not willing to allow anyone their own opinions. If you do, God forbid, you will piss off a whole slew of people.

Don't put up with this Doc. if this doesn't work to set this guy straight, then follow through on what you said.

Cathy said...

Also, I have learned the hard way that you really DO NOT know who you can trust on here. When you start to check IPs on trolls, sometimes they end up being who you thought was a good blog friend.

jon said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
rlbates said...

Buckeye, this is scary.

ThePreemie Experiment said...

I'm going through this on my blog. Someone found great joy in posting my address. Even though I removed it, it went out to anyone who had checked the box for "email follow-up comments...".

It has happened a few times now. Since I blog about my kids (along with the long term impacts of prematurity), my hubby is furious and has asked that I pull my blog.

I can't for the life of me figure out why people want to hurt a stranger they've come across in the blog world.

Vijay said...

This is really bad Jeff. You ought to seriously consider legal action.

Bongi said...

i try to understand why people bother so much to do this sort of thing. lets face it, the rest of his life can't be delivering to much interest for him.

may he be smitten with a condition requiring a general surgeon. (i'm thinking perianal abses)

Devorrah said...

Good God. I was talking about internet trolls with my ex, a law professor, as I've had the same problem. He thought the best remedy lay with the internet service provider rather than the criminal justice system. Good luck, and sorry to hear it.

Health Train Express said...

Dear Buckeye: There are evil people in this world. Certain personalities enjoy searching out doctors, lawyers, to find out more about them and their loved ones. The internet is a public place. If you wouldn't broadcast something on a loudspeaker, or invite millions of strangers into your house....don't put it on the net....

shadowfax said...

Bummer. I hope you're able to rid yourself of his unwanted attention.

Buckeye Surgeon said...

Heathtrain-
I would hope you would agree that a man's wife and kids are off limits in this setting. You don't see signs at Yankee Stadium mocking Curt Schilling's children. If someone posted KevinMD's mother's name on his site, there would be the same outrage.

Surely, we can agree on a baseline standard of decency in this blogging game. You can rip on me all you want. I'm a big boy, I can take it. But leave my loved ones out of it. Frankly, it's extremely disappointing to read your take on this.

Andy said...

Hi Buckeye,

As an aspiring surgeon, I've enjoyed reading your blog. It's definitely one of the best surgical blogs out there, and I hope that it continues.

I would tread carefully on this issue. If you didn't catch the NYTimes article on trolling a few months ago, you might want to read it:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/03/magazine/03trolls-t.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=the%20trolls%20among%20us&st=cse&oref=slogin

The destructive power potential wielded by these online miscreants can be truly sobering. I'd try to nip this one in the bud in order to save yourself any further headache and/or assaults on your personal privacy.

I would suggest searching for some possible method of recourse online. There are a number of websites and blogs by people who have been victims of this type of harassment. Here's one for instance:

http://bg-internet-abuse.blogspot.com/2008/04/requiem-for-internet-troll-his-pet.html

Hope that helps.

-Andy

DrCris said...

I agree this is totally out of order. Bloggers choose to share, and go public with private aspects of their life like their thoughts and dreams.

In no way does this give permission for others to attack, or even investigate the blogger's family.

Family is off limits. Even when you mention them in blogs. It is not their fault that their relative is a blogger.

Reid said...

as an 20 something and a fan of your blog, I apologize for my entire generation (I'm sure your stalker is one of my cohort). It really is the wild west out here, no social conventions or morality seems to apply when there is so little at stake for someone like "Jon".

I guess Thomas Hobbes had something.


Let it be known that your blog is reaching many people, including some wanna-be surgeons like myself. I hope it continues to be worth it for you.

DrB said...

Holy crap! This is why, well, yeah, what everyone else said (except health train express), but WOW! So scary. I hope there is some way to track this guy down.

Absolutely agreed, we blog, and we take good and bad comments in stride. But our pets, loved ones, etc should be off-limits.

platensimycin said...

this is scary....

we are behind you on this, Doc!

Frank Drackman said...

Sad situation, I blame it on our mamby-pamby society where an entire generation has grown to adulthood without ever having their ass kicked for being an asshole. Hell, you can't even shoot burglars anymore without risking a civil suit or jail time.

enrico said...

Buckeye,
So sorry this happened, and I can't see how a spouse or--God forbid, children--can not be seen as off-limits. I disagree with Health Train: you invite ppl into your "living room" yes, but at worst, they can comment on the decor and your public manners, etc. This is the metaphorical equivalent of rifling through the bathroom cabinets or bedroom closet.

I have a background in IT/internet security and have had to deal with some of these kinds of things in the past. One piece of advice: let this be the last post on the matter; any more will give him exactly what he wants--attention.

Unfortunately, blogging under one's own identity is a troll-attractant of the 1st order. Fortunately, blogging as yourself also connects you with people in positive ways you didn't expect, as it becomes clearer with whom you're communicating. Just don't think that putting yourself out there was a mistake: for every troll that may come along you gained far more friends.

To that end, whatever resources I have at my disposal are yours if you want some assistance. Contact me privately. Rock on.

Buckeye Surgeon said...

Thanks everyone for the kind words. I won't make a big deal about it again; just the first time riled me up a bit.

Anonymous said...

Can you get your stalker's IP address? I picked up a stalker over on Usenet a year or so ago who posted all kinds of false information about me that now comes up whenever my name is Googled (which is why I now post anonymously).

It's pretty much just annoying to me, since few people would have cause to Google my name, but it could damage your reputation if taken too far.

Your attorney can subpoena his internet provider and identify the jerk.

Good luck; I hope you don't experience any more of this.

Anonymous said...

It's all fun and games until the process server knocks, eh Jon?

Anonymous said...

that is VERY scary. I had a stalker, too. Turned out to be my BIL. Even scarier.

Kelley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kelley said...

Wow, sorry to hear about this experience. Reminds us all of the ILLUSION of anonymity we enjoy on the internet.

As far as the tax issue goes, I have always failed to understand how playing "Robin Hood," does anything to encourage the so-called "American Dream." Aspire to be anything you like, so long as when you achieve it, you're willing to give up half your income to compensate for others' lack of achievement.

Anonymous said...

Um.. I would not wait. Who knows what this 'crazy' will do next. I would contact authorities asap.

Anonymous said...

Did he also post how much it cost you to get your education? Did he also post how much you pay in liability insurance? UGH!

Victims of Angela Buer said...

Yes Internet Stalkers are usually obsessed with their victims. Ours is a n awful human being who has harassed us for well over a year online. Her name is Angela Buer and she is an awful human being. She will probably find this post and post something retaliatory. She is 39 but acts like a 12 year old. Very unstable woman w a shady and criminal past. We started a blog to out her for her crimes:

http://victimsofangela.wordpress.com

Victims of Angela Buer said...

The above comment was posted by Internet harasser and convicted felon ANGELA BUER. Angela Buer has been stalking, harassing, and defaming several people online for over a year now. She has stolen pictures from myspace pages of the victims and posted them on craigslist ads under erotic services,etc. She has also posted phone numbers and addresses of the victims in an attempt to ridicule them and harass them. She is listed on several websites as a known harasser and internet predator.

http://cyberpaths.blogspot.com
listed as a known cyberpath

http://victimsofangela.wordpress.com
a blog started by the victims of Angela Buer. The blog is used to OUT Buer for her crimes against others. Buer has several police reports filed against her and has been in and out of jail for DUI's,etc.

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry this has happened to you, as it's happening to me as we speak.

My stalker took things on a message board too far, and recently sent me a Private Message with my families information. Now, someone harassing me is one thing, but going after my family?

Now he crossed the line, and I'm bringing this to my ISP to hopefully have him barred from his ISP for misconduct.

Privacy truly doesn't exist anymore, and it's quite scary. All someone has to do is get an acquaintance of yours to give up your name, and then they have your parents info, your address, etc.

Either way good luck man, there's a lot of sickos out there.

Anonymous said...

Sorry this has happened to you. Yes there are a lot of sickos and psychos out there. Keep your chin up. This is the only way they can feel like they are still attached to you. Pretty sad that someone cant move on and their life is so sad that they have to trash you over and over again in order to feel close to you. Just know that they have no life and that they are miserable because they are sick and need medical attention

Anonymous said...

Hey Angela, Glad you left California. Good riddance! According to the DA, you "have some emotional issues". Nice try at trying to frame me for your own wrongdoings. Thanks for ending it all finally. The truth won the day here and deep down you know this. Let this be a lesson next time you decide to harass someone.