Anil Dash Joins Electronic Frontier Foundation Board June 24, 2020 1:50 PM   Subscribe

Metafilter's own, and proponent of the professional white background, has joined the board of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the group announced today with Anil confirming on his site.

Joining Anil as a new EFF board appointee is open source advocate, James Vasile, who to the best of my knowledge is not MetaFilter's own.
posted by terrapin to MetaFilter-Related at 1:50 PM (15 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite

Oh wow I know James! I've worked with him a bunch. Thanks for the heads-up, terrapin!
posted by brainwane at 1:54 PM on June 24, 2020

proponent of the professional white background

For those who came in late:
The Green Should Be White
posted by zamboni at 1:55 PM on June 24, 2020 [3 favorites]

13 years fly by, eh?
posted by Chrysostom at 2:02 PM on June 24, 2020 [3 favorites]

Thank you, zamboni.
posted by terrapin at 2:06 PM on June 24, 2020

I like that Anil points out in his statement that he's not 100% in agreement with everything the EFF's done and that's part of the reason he's joining the board. They are a little too free speech absolutist for my taste, but then again, I'm not American. Even so, I appreciate a lot of what they're pushing for.
posted by ODiV at 2:36 PM on June 24, 2020 [5 favorites]

Woo Anil!
posted by cortex (staff) at 3:02 PM on June 24, 2020 [2 favorites]

Yay this is nice!
posted by jessamyn (retired) at 6:33 PM on June 24, 2020 [3 favorites]

Wow zamboni that thread you linked. I mean ... don’t read the comments.
posted by hilaryjade at 7:02 PM on June 24, 2020 [2 favorites]

We've been getting better year after year but ya, the old days were pretty rough and tumble and that particular thread wasn't even all that far out there. I mean sure there were scurrilous rumours about a Cabal, racist jokes, someone made ThePinkSuperhero cry, jonmc called a three digit user a noob, and pitchforks were wielded but no one got banned and no one lost a hand or anything.

Also nowadays I wonder if it isn't the background that makes people question legitimacy but rather the low number and relative unobtrusiveness of the ads and the lack of paywall/auto-playing video/delayed popover.

Also, Also: wow there sure are a lot of prolific old timers who aren't around anymore.

posted by Mitheral at 8:51 PM on June 24, 2020 [5 favorites]

The shine has come off of Glitch and Anil quite a bit lately. "MeFi's Own" hopefully doesn't cause us all to bury our heads in the sand about it. From @nancy_hawa
Shortly after Anil Dash started as the CEO of Fog Creek, he announced internally that we’d be making salaries transparent and had the website changed to claim we already had. Now, 3.5 years later @glitch has laid off staff members without ever honoring the promise

They implemented salary bands, a disappointing half measure, 9 months after announcing salary transparency on their website. But the salary bands share internally were often inaccurate.

Some people had their years of experience knocked down if the experience wasn’t Fog Creek Caliber. So a person could have 7 years of experience and get paid as if they had three. I understand this practice was kept after Fog Creek changed to Glitch.

Fog Creek and Glitch have also claimed not to negotiate salaries. I’ve been told by multiple sources that this is flatly untrue.

Fog Creek also put a 4x cap on the ratio between the highest paid worker and lowest paid worker. Then changed it to 5x when they took VC. So it wasn’t a cap.

Anil literally says that it isn’t lying to present an aspiration of the company as if it has already been accomplished, and he does this all the time. The claims the company makes do not match reality.

When I raised issues about D&I at Fog Creek, Anil told me simply that there was no company in the industry that was better for D&I than Fog Creek. He said this multiple times. As a way of responding to a woman raising issues.

His aspirational truthing impacts the core business. Before he started, users visiting (Glitch’s predecessor) went straight to the editor. An app was spun up automatically.

All those users and apps were counted in usage figures for as long as I was there (and maybe still?) Of the millions of apps that Glitch tauts, I’d guess a significant percentage are either barely changed from the default or do nothing but return a 500.

And now there have been layoffs. After putzing around for years with a stagnant product while building a media arm of the company to promote Anil, the company released in 2020 paid features that were promised in 2018, I assume to disappointing results.

Eventually, I expect to hear that Glitch has either folded or been acquired for an undisclosed sum that’ll surely be less than the valuation the company got from their VC investors. Anil will laud the acquisition as a win. It’ll be a lie.

Others in the industry will blame the focus on D&I or the union, and it’ll be an excuse industry wide to avoid both.

Years of using ‘ethical tech’ as a marketing gimmick for a company whose leaders are staggeringly incompetent will set the industry back, not push it forward. That will be Anil’s contribution to “ethical tech”.

If anyone laid off from Glitch is reading this, hit me up. Etsy hiring. I’m happy to talk about my experience. I’ve only been here six months, but it’s been great. (This tweet replacing a now deleted tweet that I got some feedback on.)
posted by Space Coyote at 8:51 PM on June 24, 2020 [9 favorites]

Thanks, all. Was glad that EFF acceded to my demands about the color of their website! Hoping to be able to help with a mission that I care a lot about. And Space Coyote, there's no question there's been criticisms of me like that one and others; I appreciate being held accountable for the valid critiques and I think people can talk to our users, workers and community and fairly judge how we're doing.
posted by anildash at 9:09 PM on June 24, 2020 [6 favorites]

Also, Also: wow there sure are a lot of prolific old timers who aren't around anymore.


Not sure about active user numbers but, measured by posts and comments, the Metafilter community of 2007 was roughly 2 to 3 times the size it is now (source: infodump).

In other news, congrats Anil!
posted by matthewr at 12:23 AM on June 25, 2020 [3 favorites]

It really was a different place.
posted by Mid at 7:35 AM on June 25, 2020 [1 favorite]

yeah my thoughts align with Space Coyote.
posted by 922257033c4a0f3cecdbd819a46d626999d1af4a at 4:48 PM on June 25, 2020

anil, while we have you, can you disable the endless scroll on your blog too, kthx.
posted by terrapin at 9:53 AM on June 28, 2020

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