Yesterday, we blogged about this — Breaking News: State Dept Does Not/Not Like Nipples Nor Damn ACLU Letter.
We can’t find anyone willing to talk on or off the record on what went on behind the blog roll snafu over there. So, below is how we imagined it went down during the brainstorming of some unnamed characters, obviously too smart to handle (adapted from Behind ‘Charlie’s Angels’ 2004 TV Movie):
The issue is nipples.
Actually breasts and nipples. She’s writing about nipples. Nipples come with breasts.
We’re reading nipples. We can’t put a blog with nipple blog posts in our blog roll. Too personal.
You think? We counted seven blog posts and nineteen instances in which nipples were mentioned. Also, word association? Nipples = Protrude. Not good.
We must stop nipple talk and protrusion on FS blogs. Godsakes, our readers are future diplomats!
Yeah, who cares about nipples in a Foreign Service blog, anyway?
Just to be clear, we were not hiding behind the desk eavesdropping, this is just imagination not hard at work. But we’re wondering if something similar transpired over there, and if we can now use this incident as an example of “groupthink.”
Today, WaPo picked up the story: Foreign Service spouse finds her blog no longer has a home on State Department Web site. Here is an excerpt:
Yesterday she received an e-mail explanation from a recruiting and marketing consultant for the agency.
“Hopefully, you can understand that some topics covered in your blog are very personal in nature, e.g. nipple cozies,” the employee wrote, “and wouldn’t necessarily resonate with the majority of potential candidates who are interested in learning about the FS [Foreign Service] life overseas.”
“Through our years of recruitment experience, we found that FS prospects want to learn more about the work that’s conducted, the people and cultures with whom they will interact, the travel experiences, and the individual stories our employees have to share.”
“It really shook me to the core,” she said in an interview from her home in Annandale, where her husband, Peter, is getting ready to move to Afghanistan for a year on an unaccompanied tour.
A State Department spokesman said Wednesday night he is looking into the issue but did not have enough information yet to comment.
Read the whole thing here.
Pleaasssee! Somebody please bring this up in the Daily Press Briefing!
Because they’ve done it now. They’ve put it in black and white — only happy talk blogs are welcome! They’re looking for the mini-versions of State Magazine’s Happy Post of the Month and mini-versions of DipNote.
Perhaps they should hire Foreign Service spouses and pay them to blog about their happy lives overseas instead of using them as “bait” for free. Then, State at least, can improve the job opportunities of diplomatic spouses, and the spouses will be too preoccupied with happy write ups, they won’t have time to think or blog about their real lives.
Yes, you may post this suggestion to the Secretary’s Sounding Board.
As I was posting this, one of our regular readers saw that Jen’s WaPo story is now in the Drudge Report. And there it is with the N-word.
Folks will be on strategery meetings for the rest of the day.
In the meantime — it turns out a lot cares about nipples and much more in the Foreign Service, most especially the bloggers.
Blog pal Kolbi of A Daring Adventure writes Too Little and Too Much (Regarding Blogging, the ACLU, and NIPPLES). She deserves special mention; she is the only FS blogger who had been clubbed twice by the Serial Blog Killer and survived to tell about it:
Being on The Official Blog List actually painted an even bigger bulls eye on my back. And not just on my back, but on the backs of other State bloggers on The List. To date, to my knowledge, at least three State bloggers (and perhaps even up to five) on The List have since been shut down. And there were probably, oh, I don’t know, only about a dozen or so blogs on that List when it began. So, you know, not the best odds of bloggy survival.
So, basically, to recap: The pro-blogging side of State puts The Official List together and encourages bloggers to write tons and tons of State-themed blog posts, and then the anti-blogging side of State goes and… shuts those blogs down because they’re writing about State-themed stuff.
And here are some more of them —
Tuk & Tam | What the Nipple?
Wanderings of a Cheerful Stoic | Nipples, Censorship, and Other Matters
Cyberbones | Nipples! Boobs!
Spectrummy Mummy | N is also for Nipples
We Meant Well | Mrs. Clinton, you have a problem.
Noble Glomads | Don’t tell us who is relevant to us
The Wandering Drays | “Nipped” in the Blog
Mom2Nomads | Nipplegate 2012
Four Globetrotters | Nipples, Nipples, Everywhere
We Meant Well | State Department Does Not Care for Breast Cancer Talk
Whale Ears and Other Wonderings | Not FS Enough
Sadie Abroad | Nippletastic: A Rant For FS Bloggers
Well That Was Different | It’s the Little Things
dp’s Blog | I Guess I’m Not As Important As I Once Assumed
Mom2Nomads | You’re Just Not Quite FS Enough…
Life After Jerusalem | What Makes a Blog an FS Blog?
Dinoia Family | Wanted: Stories of the ‘Real’ Foreign Service
Dinoia Family | Did you know?
And we hear that somebody is now trying to organize a “kick me off your official list” movement … and if successful, there won’t be anyone for show and tell on State’s “inclusive atmosphere and collaborative environment,” except maybe …. well, one of our alert readers write with a simple enough question:
Oh dear! There are official standards employed here, but obviously it’s hard to figure out.
- Breaking News: State Dept Does Not/Not Like Nipples Nor Damn ACLU Letter (diplopundit.net)
- Dammit! Which State Dept Tiger Ate This Diplomatic Spouse Blogger for Dinner? (diplopundit.net)
- State Dept v. Peter Van Buren: ACLU Gets Into the Ring Over First Amendment Right (diplopundit.net)
- ACLU Warns State Dept. Against Firing Worker Who Criticized Government (wired.com)