Creating Passionate Users Guru Cancels Due to Attacks

Kathy Sierra, a usability guru and phenomenal communicator, was forced to cancel her presentations at eTech because of threats against her personally in the blogosphere.

First and foremost – our thoughts and prayers are with you Kathy on a quick and just resolution.

From Kathy’s blog post (please click through and read the whole thing)

Death threats against bloggers are NOT "protected speech" (why I cancelled my ETech presentations)

As I type this, I am supposed to be in San Diego, delivering a workshop
at the ETech conference. But I’m not. I’m at home, with the doors
locked, terrified. For the last four weeks, I’ve been getting death
threat comments on this blog. But that’s not what pushed me over the
edge. What finally did it was some disturbing threats of violence and
sex posted on two other blogs… blogs authored and/or owned by a group that includes prominent bloggers.

These are not your normal attacks, there are actual death threats. It is one thing for someone to do a nasty blog post, it is another for a human to tip the scales to the really insane side. In this case, the attackers are certifiable. And unfortunately they are hurting Kathy. And the community.

I do not have the skills to articulate a next set of steps. And the Tech community rallying trying to find Jim Gray was not successful. Hopefully this time with log files and research, we will be able to nail the bastards with criminal charges. Some things are definitely not free speech. And this is one of those times.

Now lets see if those blogs, most of which are now shut down, cooperate turning over their log files. Please may common sense rule the day.

I am at eTech as I type this so I’ll update if I hear anything. This is beyond crisis comm, this is criminal activity that must be stopped.