West Wing
The U.S. Poet Laureate

Episode Report Card
Shack: C- | 4 USERS: A
The Truth, and Other Nuisances

Oh, where to begin. First of all, I think it's particularly galling and hypocritical for a person who sits at the top of a complex creative endeavor to summarily dismiss the people who keep any media forum running smoothly as "control freaks," either as himself or through his fictional proxies. The success of any web message board absolutely depends on an engaged moderator keeping conversations organized and inappropriate intrusions out. He should be fucking grateful that he found a site about him that wasn't full of racist screeds by neo-Nazis; lengthy, inarticulate rants as to why the United States should nuke everything east of the Black Sea; and ASCII drawings of dog poo. Because that's what you get when you don't have moderators. And just because there isn't a quarter slot on the side of your monitor, that doesn't mean that it's not costing anybody anything for you to blather away online. Maybe Sorkin should go ask NBC how much it costs to maintain their forums on NBC.com. Oh wait, he can't, because they don't have any. Maybe he should ask them why they don't. Because bandwidth isn't cheap, and the more popular a site is, the more important those "control freaks" become to prevent spam, to keep the discussions on topic so that people can, you know, follow them and contribute, and to prevent the kind of overwhelming redundancies and flame wars that causes a site to collapse under the financial strain of its own popular success. Oh, and if Sorkin thinks we get treated like South American dictators by our readers, I'm sure Television Without Pity can arrange for him to get copies of all the insults, hate mail, complaints, threats, and a few emails that, if they were sent to the president, would result in a secret service investigation. Do I think it's accurate for these characters not to know or understand any of this? Absolutely. ["Although Donna might want to revise her opinion of those wacky, unmedicated online people and educate herself a little bit before she accepts that dot-com job offer." -- Wing Chun] But does anybody involved in this storyline receive any enlightenment about it? Sorry if I'm spoiling it, but no. Is Charlie enlightened about Alaskan drilling? Yes. Is Tabatha enlightened about America's land-mine policy? Yes...but that's another rant. These people? No. And that was a decision by Sorkin and his petty way of trying to get in the last word after he was slapped down for thinking that he could visit a site about the show and be treated like a god.

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West Wing




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