20 Things This Mother Will Probably Never Tell Her Son

[Editor's Note: This week, BlogHer learned an important internet lesson: Memes are people, too. BlogHer stumbled across the post below, written by Joella at Fine and Fair, in a Facebook link, and we were intrigued by the core idea of it—20 Things To Say Or Not To Say To Our Sons—and by the fact that the meme/post had been shared what looked like millions of times, and that hundreds of people had been responding and making their own lists in response. So we decided to syndicate Fine and Fair's post, as we knew it would kick off an interesting and passionate conversation. But in these days of hyperconnectivity and the all-seeing Google, even anonymous memes eventually link back to their creator. When Joella was alerted in comments that there was an actual author of the post, she responded by revising her post, naming WerdyAb as the author and linking to the original post within the BlogHer.com post, thinking she was righting a wrong. Of course! All of us in the blogosphere believe that crediting people for their work is of utmost importance. But the simple act of attaching a real live author -- a person -- to formerly faceless meme utterly changed the tone of the post, and made its humor seem sharp, its jabs more cruel, than how they'd appeared in the original version. And truth is, it took all of us a BlogHer a few days to understand and even SEE what had happened to tip the apple cart on the post as the comments were mounting. So we want to publicly apologize to Werdyab for the hurt she felt and all the attention, much of it negative, that was focused on her. We deeply regret that series of events. At BlogHer, community, respect and a sense of safety in expressing our opinions are traits we treasure, and we don't want to do anything to threaten that. We want to thank the many who spoke out on Twitter or sent us emails, which helped us focus on the unfortunate and unintended series of events. And we'd like to acknowledge Joella's honorable responses and efforts to make this right, as well. She is not to blame for how this played out.We work hard to be sure that everyone feels welcome; we value this above everything -- especially above page views. And that is why we are making this public explanation today. --Stacy Morrison, Editor-in-Chief]Last night, after a lovely and heartwarming evening at an annual fundraiser for my place of employment, I settled in with a cup of tea and my laptop to wind down before bed. Several friends had shared a list entitled "20 Things A Mother Should Tell Her Son." I thought to myself, "I am a mother! And I am going to have a son! I should read this!" I took a sip of tea as I clicked and prepared for even more loveliness and heart warmth to round out my night, but found my heart filled with...something other than warmth....more
@fineandfair and I am from the south and my boys have respect for their elders by calling them ... more