I still get a lot of questions about Albany Eye. Here are a few answers.
Did you write Albany Eye alone?
Why was Albany Eye so popular and influential?
It wasn’t! Most people never heard of it. However, many of those who did read it worked in local media. If people in the media are interested in something, it gets attention disproportionate to its actual value. Why? Because they think if it’s about them, it must be important.
Has Albany Eye continued to be a problem for you, you know, professionally?
Sort of — but it’s also been a bigger problem personally. In the summer of 2010, the media took their revenge against me for making fun of them. Several reporters saw it as an opportunity to come after me.
You worked at one TV station and made fun of other TV stations. Wasn’t that unethical?
That’s a question worthy of a master’s thesis, not a web FAQ. I don’t think you can judge ethics without examining intent —and take my word for it, I did not use the blog as a tool to drive up ratings. If you think Albany Eye had the power to influence viewer behavior in the Albany/Schenectady/Troy market, I have a bridge you might be interested in buying.
Isn’t it cowardly to write under a pseudonym?
A local news anchor wrote in his ridiculous newspaper column that the way I wrote Albany Eye was “cowardly.” To him, I say simply, “Fuck off.”
Ben Franklin frequently wrote under pseudnyms, and coward is not a word we hear used to describe him. Like Franklin’s alter egos, Albany Eye was not just a name but a persona. The Federalist Papers? Anonymous. The Economist magazine? No bylines. If you think anonymous writing is “cowardly,” maybe you should go read a book, you dolt.
How many people read Albany Eye?
During November 2006, our last full month of operation, there were over 35,000 unique visitors to the web site.
Why did you take time off in 2005?
Some jerk was threatening to expose me.
Why did you come back?
I cared less about being exposed by some jerk than I did about writing Albany Eye.
Some people think you should have been fired.
That’s not a question, but I’ll answer it anyway. I certainly could have been fired. My termination would have been good for my readers, because they’d still be enjoying Albany Eye. Instead I kept my job and shut down the blog. Those who think I should have been punished more severely can take heart in knowing that the incident cost me money and caused me to give up something I enjoyed.
Speaking of money, did you profit from Albany Eye?
Oh, yeah…big time! I raised about $100 during my ill fated fund drive, $25 in Amazon partner money, and like $30 from running Google ads. Whooo-hoooo!
Why didn’t you allow comments on Albany Eye?
I did in the beginning, but the comment section quickly became a place for cheap shots, insults, and viperous personal attacks. Rather than edit the comments, I chose to forbid them. Some people have said that this violated the spirit of blogging; I say you keep a blog in your own way, and let me keep it in mine.
Will Albany Eye return some day?
Got a question you think should be included? Drop me a line.