Associated “Content Producer” Delete-Happy with Reader Comments

February 8, 2009 at 8:57 pm | Posted in Cancun, Internet | 11 Comments

Mexico’s drug carteles are no joke.  Neither is President Felipe Calderon as he attempts to hire the best and brightest to combat the horrifyingly violent and incredibly pissed off elements of organized crime throughout Mexico.  It’s sickening how quickly the narcotraficantes pick off Calderon’s appointed crime fighters, often within days of starting the job.  The most recent assassination occurred in Cancun, where Retired General Mauro Enrique Tello Quinonez was found mutilated alongside his aide/bodyguard and driver. 

But what I find sickening is Julia Bodeeb’s assertion in an article she wrote for Associated Content (and which is subsequently being reposted around the Internet) that tourists should stay far, far away from Cancun:

 If you are looking for a lovely beach vacation, I would recommend you avoid Cancun.  It does not seem therisk with organized crime murdering so many people.  Find a safer place to vacation at.  Cancun, Mexico needs to solve their violent crime problem before tourists return there. 

To read the entire “article,” click here.

I will leave the grammatical errors, torturous syntax, and accidentally omitted words for another tirade.  But this is clearly an opinion piece, no?  And Associated Content allows for comments.  One would think that such a strong editorial, urging tourists to stay far away from Cancun (and indeed the entire country) would be followed by a rousing dialogue on whether such an extreme stance is warranted.  Alas, this is not the case, as the author of this article, Julia Bodeeb chose to continually delete comments that respectfully disagreed with her position. 

Several members of the Cancun Care forum attempted to post in response to her article.  Their comments were almost immediately deleted.  None used profanity, all were respectful, and all were immediately deleted.  Julia Bodeeb then posted a link to a site which discussed accidental deaths in Cancun over the last few years.

One intrepid Cancun lover, Vegas, wrote directly to that siren of journalistic integrity, asking what her problem is and why she is not allowing any discussion about her article if the comments disagree with her position.

Julia Bodeeb’s response? It’s a good one, and one that Vegas posted for us all to marvel at:

VivaLasVegas,

Another Content Producer, Julia Bodeeb, has sent you the following message on Associated Content:

When you are a writer here feel free to expect your comments to stay.  otherwise, you blow.

Julia Bodeeb, are you really a writer?  Because, despite the great publications you seem to have been published in, it seems that you are missing the point of what good Internet writing does.  It provokes thought.  It engages people so that they want to respond.  It starts a conversation, especially when the platform for a conversation is right there in the form of a comment box.  It brings to light different opinions that may even enable the original writer to re-examine her original position.

But Julia, why do you keep deleting comments?  What do you know about Mexico beyond what you’ve read on CNN?  Is it possible that you are so uninformed about the incredible complexity of Cancun that you are threatened by those who possess more knowledge about this dynamic city of almost one million?  Is that why you refuse to engage with them?

And why, oh why, would a freelance writer, one whose Internet reputation is their bread and butter, tell someone “you blow.”  Fo’ real? 

Perhaps you should stick to articles like your Gift in a Jar Ideas for Valentine’s Day.  You TOTALLY rocked that one!

But we all still really want to know: Julia Bodeeb, have you ever even been to Cancun?

To the Cancun Care community: feel free to post here your comments that were deleted from her article.  I promise not to make them disappear.  Unless, of course, you tell me I blow.  But I know you’re all too classy to say that!

Computerless and Bereft

December 10, 2007 at 10:16 am | Posted in Blogging, Internet | 4 Comments

I’ve been engaged in a battle of wills with Gateway for the last six months over the sorry state of my laptop.  I’ve been losing miserably.  I spent four hours on Thursday night on the phone with Gateway when I could have been: doing my lengthy homework for class, blogging, cooking and eating dinner, exercising (yeah, right), playing tug of war with Mr. Puppers, or watching 12 Corazones with Homeboy.  Instead, I spent it on the phone with Gateway tech support alternately whining, bitching, wheedling, and insulting the fine folks at this behemoth of uselessness.

Alas, I am computerless, hence the silence on the blogging front. 

But I’ve got things to share, and am looking forward to doing so on Orale, Pues once I have a computer that works!

Immigration Grrrls Rock!

November 22, 2007 at 2:03 am | Posted in Blogging, Immigration, Internet, Marriage | 6 Comments

The idea of forming friendships and making acquaintances online has long made me twitchy.  Pretty ironic, considering I am the consummate lurker and do love to post my snark (and occasional advice) on forums.  And it makes me feel slightly uneasy when I’ve followed someone’s blog or forum posts and then meet them in person.  In fact, at an expat gathering in Cancun last Xmas season, I admitted sheepishly to Rivergirl that I followed her blog and therefore knew about the parts of her life that she chose to share in posts.  I felt as though I was admitting to something bizarre like collecting panties from Japanese schoolgirls but Rivergirl took it in stride. 

Imagine my surprise when, after embarking on a long visa process to get Homeboy here, I started bonding with women on immigration forums.  This bonding led to emails, text messages, phone calls, and in one case, in-person visits!  All with women I’d be thrilled to suck back cups of coffee with on my lunch break or share some beers and fried goodies with after work.  And what connects us is the fact that we all went through the immigration process (some much more arduous than others, and others still unresolved) for a Mexican. 

There’s Stephanie, who lives too far away to meet for a weekend, but is from an area enticing enough for me to fantasize about a double-shot of adventure: meeting her and her Mexican in person, and taking a road trip through Baja.

There’s Candace, who I “met” on the Ciudad Juarez forum.  It turns out that she and her husband own a house in the same fraccionamiento in Cancun that Homeboy and I first lived in. 

And Laura in Wisconsin, who filed a hardship waiver to get her once undocumented husband legalized.  A fellow writer and wonderer, yet she seems much more productive and less lazy than I.  Maybe she’s faking it, but perhaps she’s not and she’ll post some inspiration for me to get my butt in gear.

I’ve saved Monica for last, since she holds the place of honor as the only woman I’ve ever met in person after connecting online.  Of course, it was inevitable that we’d get along: our Mexicans share a name, they’re both from the Yucatan Peninsula, they both worked in restaurants and bars in tourist regions, and they arrived in the US for the first time ever within a week of each other.  And they’re both currently cold ALL THE TIME. 

Perhaps for others, meeting online and then in person is normal.  For me, not so much.  But it’s added another fascinating layer to my life. 

So thanks, immigration grrrls for changing my mind about online friendships!

And adelante, chavas! Or shall I say, ñoras!

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