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Throw open the curtains and come meet the people behind href="" style="text-decoration: none">Moblog.

meet the mods is a guide to the href="" style="text-decoration: none">Moblog team. It features mini-bios of the moderators, administrators and management that give so generously of their time and energies to help power the site.

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Replicant: A genetically engineered creature composed entirely of organic substance.

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With any luck, this will be the most anyone will have to hear from me.


Believe me, it's best for all of us that way.

It would be awesome if the site could just run itself, with no input from anyone. Moblog would be a place where nothing broke and everyone got just the features they wanted, and none of the stuff they didn't. There would be no spam and no one would bitch(good luck with that.). It would make money hand over fist, too(since we're dreaming).

Sadly, this isn't what we have. So I'm an admin, because the powers that be trust me not to b0rk the site and haven't figured out a way to kill me yet (Alfie has tried, though.) Though I'm comfortable in an administrative role, it is strange for me(specifically) to be in *this* one. I personally am really quite the opposite of what the vast, vast majority of moblog is about. I prefer to think of myself as the anti-admin, though I have been known to answer to the Goth Mod, The Evil Empire, the Dark Side of the Force, That Bitch, and Hey You. What seems like an age and a half ago, I became the first US mod on Moblog. That's the only time you'll hear me refer to myself and the US in the same sentence. I'm a New Yorker. My remotest concern ends at city limits.

As to Moblog, well, it's just like life. The things most people seem to really feel passionately about don't interest me in the slightest and vice versa. The list of things I care about is very short. The list of things I don't care about is infinite. I am interested in individuals; community isn't something that appeals to me. There is *NOTHING* about me that is family friendly. A short list of things I am not: social, gregarious, outgoing, extroverted, inclusive, and nurturing. No to all, on a grand and glorious scale. However, I do tend to be reasonably polite, which gets me excellent service at restaurants. Given the choice between doing damn near anything and being left alone, I prefer to be left alone the vast majority of the time. If you ask me what my core value is, it's independence. If you're looking for an alignment I'm a true neutral(and boy does that make people uncomfortable). I don't queue, and I curse like a sailor on extended shore leave. I am exceptionally reasonable, but I am not necessarily fair(neither is life. Cope.) My favorite saying is "'deserve' is not an operating principle of the universe." I have been accused of being many horrible things and about half of them are true(though I do wish I'd stop being accused of the other half, because it's freaking tedious). I do not make small talk, nor do I drink, smoke, gamble or do drugs. I am an *extremely* private person and if I could implement one feature IMMEDIATELY on moblog with a wave of my mitten it would be the ability to set custom filters for every post. Precision and punctuality are traits I appreciate. I care about how the site functions(and whether or not it's financially solvent), but don't care about how people *feel* about it. Other people with a significantly deeper vested interest in the latter can take care of that part. Think of me as your neighborhood replicant. I value brains over niceness, efficiency over sentiment and I am a stone cold pragmatist in a sea of idealists(often to their horror).

Idealism makes me giggle and tastes good with toast. Other than that, I find it to be almost entirely useless.

I am not the droid you're looking for.

My photos are usually taken with a Nikon DSLR. The camphone shots are taken with an ancient treo650, which is WHY most of the shots are taken with a Nikon DSLR. As to what I'm likely to highlight, my answer is "anything I damned well want.", which has worked out pretty well all these years. I'm interested in good photos, regardless of who takes them. As previously mentioned, I am a born native of the City of New York. My accent is included at no extra charge. I like NYC, animals, food(and animals that are food), architecture, design, photography, decorative arts, Coney Island, and chess. After that, it gets iffy pretty rapidly. I am a design and art professional(a real one, thanks), a good DJ, an INTJ poster child and carbon based.

Everything else is largely irrelevant and probably none of anyone else's business. I don't do interviews.

I can frequently be found on Second Life, where I am exactly the way I am in first life because I don't believe in personality transplants.

Disbelieve what I've written here at your peril, and don't blame me for any disillusionment you may experience. You've been warned. Void where prohibited, your mileage may vary and restrictions may apply.

The accompanying photo was taken by Lars Lunde, on a rainy November night a few years ago in Times Square. If there's a photo of me that can be said to be representative, this one covers it.

Carry on.

Posted by bronxelf

6th Sep 2009, 09:10   | tags:,

nige says:

That photo brings back some memories. Great to see it in this size. "Void where prohibited", lol.

6th Sep 2009, 09:15

bronxelf says:

The photo has held up really well. As I mentioned when it was taken, there is *NO* post work on this shot. This is precisely how it came out of the camera.

6th Sep 2009, 09:17

nige says:

It's funny, because contrary to what you have written, the photo looks to me like you are walking away from the New York; leaving the city. Turning your back on it.

6th Sep 2009, 09:20

bronxelf says:

Only if you don't understand NYC geography. :) Besides, if you reverse the shot you lose the lighting effects.

But all of that reads too much into the actual shot. The real story behind this photo is Lars and I were coming out of Chow Yun Smut's hotel and he'd been taking photos of me in the elevator on the way down. When we got outside, it was oddly deserted (rainy night, midweek, just before that food holiday in November). He liked the reflections of the lights on the pavement, so we took about... I don't know, a dozen shots of me walking towards him in the rain.

It looks way more dramatic than the actual scene would make it, as most photos tend to.

6th Sep 2009, 09:24

nige says:

Yeah that's the other thing I like about photography; you don't need photoshop to manipulate what the viewer sees :)

6th Sep 2009, 09:26

Craft says:

I want to say I like your favourite saying, but you scare me...

6th Sep 2009, 09:33

paintist says:

your interview shows exatly what you have always seemed to be, very clear, and I still like visiting your stream..... :-)

6th Sep 2009, 12:09

Caine says:

That's a lot of words - I was expecting about three sentences. :D Love that shot.

6th Sep 2009, 17:15

bronxelf says:

Craft- It's a good saying. It's absolutely true, which helps. As to the last bit, yeah, I get that a lot.

Paintist- Thank you. I appreciate clarity. It saves so much time trying to explain things again later.

Caine - I figured if I explained now, it would save me time in ever having to explain later.

6th Sep 2009, 18:34

Caine says:

Yep, probably best to get it out of the way now. Still, it was surprising.

6th Sep 2009, 18:38

bronxelf says:

I considered taking a new one but figured this one would be far more accurate than anything I'm likely to take myself.

6th Sep 2009, 19:01

looks like the issue of transparency ends here then.

7th Sep 2009, 07:35

bronxelf says:

I'm not sure how you're able to draw that conclusion, considering every decision made thus far has been made available to anyone to see.

ETA: And I don't think you can get more transparent than what I've written. I'm being quite up front.

7th Sep 2009, 07:41

just struck me as a case of "meet the new boss, same as the old boss", that's all, nothing personal.

7th Sep 2009, 09:38

bronxelf says:

Though I am not taking it at all personally, I'm still not seeing the issue. You don't get more transparent than what I've written.

Explain to me, if you would, the problem here? There are three people in management, four admins and eighteen mods before I include editors. Surely we're not expected to all dance in lockstep? I'm not a people person. I've been here for four and a half years and I wasn't one when I got here. But I've apparently modded the site well enough over the years to get admin rights. I've never abused my mod rights for a moment, I've never withheld highlights from anyone (whether I like them or not), and I sure as hell haven't stopped myself from disagreeing with management when I think they're on the wrong track.

Since you're the one relating what I wrote to transparency (which I find ironic, as it's so transparent, birds could crash into it), I'd like to know where the connection lies.

7th Sep 2009, 09:49

it lies in the phrase "I'm not a people person."

7th Sep 2009, 09:56

Caine says:

"looks like the issue of transparency ends here then"

What does that mean? Bronxelf has always been upfront and as transparent as a person can get - she has always been in favour of transparency. You don't need to be a cheerleader to be efficient and good at what you do.

7th Sep 2009, 09:59

Caine says:

Oh, well never mind then. If the phrase "I'm not a people person" is a problem, you'll have one with me too.

7th Sep 2009, 10:01

bronxelf says:

So are you saying that being on the back end of the site should be the exclusive purview of extroverts?

Not every task here has to do with public interface. What I said was true in both directions- that if there's a zillion things that don't interest me, the things that *do* are things that most other people don't want to touch. They would prefer to work with people directly on community projects rather than how the site functions, or how the money gets made or create the boring lists of guidelines and checklists of which people should be aware.

These tasks are no less important than any other, you know.

7th Sep 2009, 10:03

if you're just working "in the back room" fine, but from where I'm sitting one of the main issues with Moblog, and one of the main reasons why this actual post exists is the general moderation/admin "attitude". As I stated, it's not a personal comment in any way, and as I said at the very beginning, I'm sick and tired of people answering my complaints about moblog with insults and derisory comments, and generally hiding behind that facade and not doing anything to address the actual issues (for example - when I email some text, the punctuation is changed to question marks. Apparently the cause for this is my "piece of shit microsoft software". Meanwhile the annoying problem hasn't been addressed or resolved in any way, and this is MONTHS ago. Comments like "Oh, well never mind then. If the phrase "I'm not a people person" is a problem, you'll have one with me too." sound like a veiled threat and do very little to inspire any confidence either.

7th Sep 2009, 10:14

Caine says:

Para, it was not a veiled threat, just a statement. Please don't confuse anything I've said with Bronxelf. I'm not a people person either. I am polite and I'm willing to welcome people. I am not the type of person to be a community cheerleader. What I am willing to do is work at making things better - deleting spam, following abuse reports, making those tedious lists, rotating images, etc. I'm one of those people who is willing to ask questions and keep asking until there's an answer.

It seems to me your complaints here are misplaced because you have been treated in a manner you don't like previously. We're all working to try and rectify these issues.

7th Sep 2009, 10:23

bronxelf says:

I haven't insulted you(even a little), and last I checked I can't control the words of other people(or I'd be using THAT power on much more important things). As I said, I do tend to be reasonably polite. I get better service in restaurants that way.

I'm not an IT professional(I'm a design professional, and not web design, either.), so I can't go in and fix the code myself.

However where *I* sit, I have a different view of the situation, as you imagine. Interestingly, I have the exact same problem you do with the punctuation. It's annoying. I agree. Except it happens to me when I send from mobile, and that's got nothing to do with microsoft.

However, this is not an issue(assuming it's even one issue, and not two) that is going to be fixed without a bunch of other, more pressing issues, being solved first. That's sucky, but it's true. Though I agree with you it's annoying (again, I have a similar problem), the realities are as follows:

1. This is not at the top of the list of problems to be fixed, annoying (again, I agree with you) as it is.

2. My being more of a people person would not bump this problem up on the list any higher than it is right now.

I can't be happy and peppy and put a bright face on that, and there's really no reason to- it sucks.

What I can do is what I just did- be honest with you. If you say "hey, x thing is screwed up", I can be honest with you about that, and about what, realistically, RIGHT NOW, can be done about it. And if there isn't anything? I can tell you that also.

My being more perky ain't gonna fix it, though, and I fail to see how my being more extroverted would solve your problem.

7th Sep 2009, 10:25

Read it again, I haven't accused you of insuting me.
caine, I didn't confuse you with Bronxelf, I merely answered the posts below mine, and forgot to delineate clearly between the two of you, and for both these misunderstandings I apologise wholeheartedly, and herein lies part of the big problem to which I allude: there is and always has been far too much bullshit with semantics and wordplay. Whether you're a people person or not is a side-issue. I don't have time to continue with any "what I actually meant was..." discussions - my point is that the style (or lack) of "customer service" has always been shit, and is looking like it's destined to remain so. I'm not having a go at you about this, or indeed anyone else, I'm saying that along with those people-free techy issues which I remain completely un-reassured about, the public face of Moblog admin is an equally important issue, and one which seems to be completely overlooked.

7th Sep 2009, 10:46

Caine says:

Okay. Just to clarify my earlier statement, I meant you probably won't like my introduction when it gets posted, as I'm not an extroverted people person.

I do understand the issues you have, I've had them myself. From my point of view, simply getting a straight answer is good, and that has been difficult in the past. A lot of issues need to be dealt with, and they are being dealt with.

7th Sep 2009, 10:54

bronxelf says:

First of all, words (and images) are all we have, here. So everyone needs to be careful and as precise as possible in how they're used. I am intuitive, not psychic.

What you *said* was in reference to the people-person thing. That's the thing I then replied to. If you meant something else, then saying that would be more efficient and waste less time. I am all for wasting less time, probably more than anyone you've ever spoken to.

However you're simply wrong about the last bit. The public face has been, if anything, overly addressed by now. I repeat, there are eighteen mods, four admins, and three management roles, along with a large number of editors. Many of these people are incredibly thrilled to be part of the public face of moblog and will do a fine job of it, because they *love* interacting with people. However, if what you expect and demand is that every person on the back end be the same in that respect, it's at best an unrealistic goal and you will ultimately be disappointed.

The better part of customer service is about responsiveness, whether or not your problem can actually be solved immediately. I responded to you about your problem, up front an honestly in one single reply, in the space of five minutes from the time of your posting it here. My being more empathic(or for that matter, empathetic) would not get you faster or better service.

7th Sep 2009, 10:55

jc1000000 says:


You should know this photo has been my wallpaper on my touchscreen tastic HTC Hero for some time now ... just in case you ever feel like you are being watched :)

18th Sep 2009, 02:08

bronxelf says:

Hi. Have we met? I always feel that way.


18th Sep 2009, 02:11