A couple of days ago I wrote a link post, the same as I have done hundreds of times before. Found an article online somewhere, read it, picked out a few things that stuck out and threw them into Apple Notes. I typed out my thoughts on the couple of highlighted areas and published these to my blog.
No more thought was put into this than I have put into every other link post I have ever published. Unless I am specifically subscribed to the author, I have absolutely no knowledge any further than the post I consume, or perhaps some supporting links they post in said article. However, this linked post I published happened to be by someone who has some terrible ideas about trans individuals, and this was only pointed out to me yesterday evening.
Thankfully, this was by the excellent podcaster Alex Cox (you can see the replies on the post) making me more aware of the person I was linking to. To be clear, these ideas are not in the post I liked to, I just read a post talking about ancient aliens and thought the ideas surrounding disagreement were poignant in the current climate. However, this doesn’t stop me feeling terrible about it.
As soon as I received the reply, I began to worry and think about what I should do. My heart was absolutely in the right place, and I immediately wanted to make sure I have done the right thing. I think it is OK to separate some ideas from the person who has them, but at some point publishing online I do have a certain responsibility, even with the tiny platform that I have. It would break my heart that someone would find this person through my post and then consume other terrible posts and ideas.
Let’s just say I didn’t sleep much last night thinking about this, but I decided in the end to keep the post up, but with a clear disclaimer at the top. I believe the post still stands up on its own. I hope people understand that I read this at face value, however I genuinely understand how it could read if you are aware of the backstory (which I was clueless about).