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Time for a Pledge Drive!

It’s time (past time, really) for a pledge drive! If you appreciate this blog and its unique perspective, please consider donating by clicking the button below.

donate button

You can also donate by Venmo at David-Futrelle-1.

There’s no other blog quite like this one and your donations are what keep it alive. WHTM is ad-free, and I don’t pester you with popups asking for donations every time you visit. (I try to limit my pestering to these pledge drives.) There’s no mysterious billionaire keeping me afloat. This is a one dude, two cat operation.

I know this is a difficult time to ask for donations; many of you I am sure are as strapped as I am at the moment. But if you can afford to donate, please do. And if you can donate a little extra to make up for those who can’t donate now, that would be even better. You don’t know how much I appreciate it.

And if you’re one of those who donates monthly or has donated a lump sum since the last pledge drive, thank you so much!

My financial situation is, I’m sad to report, pretty precarious. I don’t have the money to cover either my rent or my insurance payment at the end of the month. And I’m still struggling with medical bills. I had to cover several thousand dollars worth of emergency dental work this spring and at the moment I don’t have the money to actually get the job finished. So every little bit you can spare would help a great deal.

Thanks in advance for your support!r

–David Futrelle

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Naglfar
Naglfar
1 year ago

@Surplus
The site was down. David tweeted about it. I’m not sure why, probably a glitch at the hosting system or something. Anyway, it’s back up now so not a big deal. Servers malfunction sometimes, it’s just the way of technology.

Catalpa
Catalpa
1 year ago

@Surplus
I couldn’t access WHTM either. I got some kind of error page about a database failure or something. I’m pretty sure the whole site was down for everyone, not just you. And it was probably due to some server or database glitch, not the actions of a particular individual.

Just because something inconvenient happens, that doesn’t automatically mean it’s some intricately orchestrated plot in order to harm you specifically. In fact, I’d say that it’s almost never an intricately orchestrated plot to harm you specifically.

KindaSortaHarmless
KindaSortaHarmless
1 year ago

^Yeah, I got the database failure too. Something probably went wrong somewhere (you can tell I’m not a computer person).

Victorious Parasol
Victorious Parasol
1 year ago

Another person who got the database failure page. I refreshed, got the message again, grumbled, did something else, checked the page again, got the message again, grumbled, did something else, and now it’s working again.

Naglfar
Naglfar
1 year ago

Yep, database failure here too. Seems to be resolved now.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
1 year ago

Why was I subjected to this atrocious treatment?

What part of “database error” says “We are targeting Surplus for atrocious treatment” to you?

Moggie
Moggie
1 year ago

A database connection error can be a symptom of a denial of service attack. The database server will be configured for a particular maximum number of concurrent connections, so if an attacker swamps the site with traffic, it can max out this limit. If you’re using lower-cost hosting on a shared server, the outage could even be due to an attack on another site which shares the same database server. If anyone is being targeted, it’s David.

Naglfar
Naglfar
1 year ago

@Moggie
Do you think there are enough enemies of the site who would want to DDoS it? I know the manosphere doesn’t like it, but this site is hardly the biggest against them.

Ohlmann
Ohlmann
1 year ago

Unlikely to be an attack against David indeed. Also, while the outage can be a symptom of DDoS, it’s similar to saying that cough is a symptom of black death : technically true, but not the most likely option on rate.

epitome of incomprehensibility

The A.I. that genders writing is…interesting and frustrating at the same time.

I first used my “epitome of incomprehensibility” nym while on a creative writing site (started ages 16/17) and when I first referred to myself as “she,” someone wrote that they were surprised to find out “e_o_i is a girl” and had to reset their “gender calibration meter” or something 🙂

My theory, for what it’s worth, isn’t that my writing was particularly masculine, but that gender-neutral pseudonyms (especially if they’re not “name-like” words) tend to be recognized as male. It’s the male-default bias, similar to the “Dr.” example above (although in that case it’s also that there were more men than women in medicine up until…when, a couple of decades ago? fairly recently anyway).

Also, the possibility of someone being non-binary or otherwise gender-nonconforming just doesn’t occur to a lot of people.

Also, David, hope the pledge drive goes well! Unfortunately I can’t give as much as last year because my tutoring work is down this summer.

Naglfar
Naglfar
1 year ago

@David Futrelle
My knowledge is limited, but if there was a DDoS I think you’d see a massive spike in traffic immediately preceding the down time. If that didn’t happen, it probably wasn’t a DDoS.

Surplus to Requirements, Observer of the Vast Blight-Wing Enstupidation
Surplus to Requirements, Observer of the Vast Blight-Wing Enstupidation
1 year ago

If it’s sharing its hosting with other sites, and one of them was the target, you wouldn’t see a spike in your stats.

Has your hosting provider had anything to say about this incident? Even so much as an apology?

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