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Ad Exec Suicide Linked to Anonymous Blog--could this happen here?

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by 21, Mar 3, 2008.

  1. 21

    21 Well-Known Member

    This caught my attention because really relates to what we do here (on SJ) and how we talk about people in our industry.

    Last week, a top ad agency exec jumped off the top of a Chicago hotel (40 yrs old with two kids). According to the Tribune story (below), some industry people think it was related to a nasty anonymous blog item about him, and the equally nasty comments that followed.


    Here's the Tribune story on the blog and the suicide, and industry gossip sites in general (quoted below).


  2. Ben_Hecht

    Ben_Hecht Active Member

    "One Degree More" . . .

    The next-door neighbor to: "Work harder, not smarter"

    Cliches, too-often spewed by those without concrete solutions of their own to offer, in an effort to make it look as if they're effective executives.

    The result, in this case, is indeed regrettable.

    But my favorite fable, especially as it related to modern business life, remains
    "The Emperor's New Clothes".
  3. Ben_Hecht

    Ben_Hecht Active Member

    Now, there are obvious, cheap (hilarious!) jokes that could be launched, here.

    The punchlines are obvious.

    I, for one, will resist.

    But in this business, the bulk of the Macy's Parade-sized targets are well-insulated, with more layers of protection that the POTUS.
  4. outofplace

    outofplace Well-Known Member

    I can't imagine 40-year-old adult committing suicide over anonymous comments online unless he was already dealing with some serious mental health issues.

    I make a point of the age because we have seen stories about such things with young people. Teenagers are often at risk to begin with and I could see something as silly as a message board turning serious with somebody that young.

    Yes, we have some awful things posted on this site and other message boards. I've been a target a time or two and I've written some pretty lousy things about other posters on here. But to think somebody would be messed up enough to commit suicide about such a thing. Sorry, I blame the person, not the medium, if a case like that were to arise.
  5. Norman Stansfield

    Norman Stansfield Active Member


    I hope RAMBO_WILL_BE_UNLEASHED_2007 didn't do the same thing after all the love he received on this site...
  6. Frank_Ridgeway

    Frank_Ridgeway Well-Known Member

    True. I've known four people who did it. I don't think it was any one thing.

    As for here, I think we've become better at waiting until someone does something to bring attention to themselves, rather than attacking someone for the hell of it the way it was on the old board.

    Unfortunately, we've also had some people who have never been in the business who seem to delight in taking shots at writers and editors they've never met and repeat whatever bullshit they've "heard." Or, rather, "herd." Know anyone like that?
  7. 21

    21 Well-Known Member

    Pretty sure it's spelled 'heard.' Happy to help.
  8. Ben_Hecht

    Ben_Hecht Active Member

    Tough crowd -- but we all knew that, going in.
  9. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    Hey Frank take the pipe - OK ;)
  10. 21

    21 Well-Known Member

    As this relates to SJ, I was thinking more about the lesser-known writers/editors who occasionally fall into the crosshairs here. The big name writers know that public commentary is an occupational hazard.
  11. Frank_Ridgeway

    Frank_Ridgeway Well-Known Member

    So it's OK to accuse a big-name sports editor of sexism (which was later debunked by two women who worked for him), but not OK if the sports editor works on a 10K?

    I don't think the problem is the status of the attackee, the problem is when people talk out their ass about people they've never met.
  12. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    Like much of what is written about Presient Bush
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