What Is Happening to the TWN Website??!

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I have had hundreds of emails asking what was wrong with The Washington Note website. It hasn’t been loading properly. Some people get blank pages, partial pages, or notes that the site has been suspended and referring to “accounts payable.”
Let me assure everyone that there are no billing problems, but it does seem that my site has outgrown the resources and environment of a very generous host who has helped me build TWNthese last couple of years.
I do not know what has been wrong, and my host who manages the site has not been reachable for reasons I don’t understand. We have suspicions that my site has been hitting against some kind of bandwidth limitation in addition to having been the target of a serious spam attack, and has just been growing in terms of readership. There have been spikes in TWN readership that apparently overwhelmed the host server.
In any case, the site will be moving shortly. I apologize to everyone who checks in for the inconvenience involved. I’m just as frustrated — well more actually.
I’m writing this from Muscat, Oman now where I am speaking this morning at a conference on “The Challenges of Gulf Security” co-organized by the Stanley Foundation and the Institute for Near East & Gulf Military Analysis.
But in between sessions, I am working on getting this web hosting matter resolved.
Thanks again —
Steve Clemons

Comments

14 comments on “What Is Happening to the TWN Website??!

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  2. duda says:

    The web site came up fine for me this morning. I have dial up.
    It could be an open relay that allows tons of spam.
    The IT admin is supposed to monitor and correct this.
    There may be a back door.
    This sounds like someone is messing with the site.
    If a site is flooded with spam or some other data, it jams the works.
    Of course, this happens when you’re in Oman.
    http://janusg.free.fr/

    Reply

  3. jason says:

    steve,
    you should chat with jane/et. al. at firedoglake.com they faced similar challenges recently
    cheers

    Reply

  4. lugbolt says:

    TWN..good to have you back. Began to experience all the glitches last week after reading some sharp criticism of the administration. Seemed rather strange. Good to see you again.

    Reply

  5. Pissed Off American says:

    Arianna has made some good points and supported some interesting posters, but at the end of the day the site was all about feeding her ego. I can get enough of that on C-SPAN.
    Posted by Dons Blog
    AND feeding her pocket book. A large Pharma company has alledgedly paid six figures for a month of exclusive advertising there.
    Arianna used to have my respect. But her blog’s content is obviously being grossly manipulated by her staff. If she is unaware of the extent of the manipulation, than she is an idiot. If she is aware of it, than she is just another greedy bloodsucker, no better than that shrew Coulter. Either scenario does not bode well for THP.

    Reply

  6. Dons Blog says:

    I stopped posting at Huffington Post a while ago. The posts were obviously being manipulated from the start to create the story Arianna wanted.
    Arianna has made some good points and supported some interesting posters, but at the end of the day the site was all about feeding her ego. I can get enough of that on C-SPAN.

    Reply

  7. Pissed Off American says:

    You must not have researched the issue. The controversy at THP is far larger than the mere blocking of comments. It has to do with a site techie ACTING AS A TROLL, and actually HARRASSING GUEST BLOGGERS, as well as manipulating thread content. There are also credible accusations of viral advertising, as well as a suspicion, not entirely unrealistic, that a large pharma company was working with the troll to get Dr. Rost, (an industry whistleblower), banned.
    I followed the thing, closely, from its beginning, and can assure you that THP is activelly involved in a cover-up of what has occurred there the last three days, and has altered the site to conceal events, accusations, comments and actions.
    Vaugn, if you think such things are acceptable in the blogging world, than you are encouraging, through your minimization of such blog behavior, a blogosphere that will be no more credible, and no less beholding, to big business and political entities than the MSM currently is. What I saw unfold at THP completely exposes them as being something other than what the claim to be. If thats what I want, I might as well watch Fox News.

    Reply

  8. vachon says:

    Thanks for the update. I thought to myself, dang, if the man needs some coin to keep operating, I’m happy to send some. loL!
    I don’t know of any blogger who hasn’t grown and not experienced this sort of site meltdown so relax and take care if it when you get home.
    Enjoy your trip.

    Reply

  9. vaughan says:

    Good luck with the page–Don’s Blog seems like he has some good advice.
    And POA–I usually enjoy reading your comments, even if I don’t agree with them (I usually do agree), but re: the Huffington Post, in the world of blogs, it’s like someone’s house, or store. Arianna can run it as she likes. Just like if Steve wanted to block out any of our comments, it’s his right–although as we know he’s incredibly judicious and open about different points of view here.
    Very few sites have the ability to copy Kos’ community, and even in Kos, the spats and inter-site policing can get ugly. Kos has come down hard in the past when it suited him. I love TWN because it is run so well (I’m so glad it worked today! I’ve missed it). The quality of posts and comments is an order of magnitude better than most political blogs.

    Reply

  10. Bruce says:

    Let’s hope you don’t have too many enemies trying to sabotage your work at the NSA… 😉

    Reply

  11. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Any of you following the furor over at The Huffington Post??? It seems that Dr.Rost discovered that he was being harrassed by a troll that was actually one of the Huffington Post’s head techies. It really got heated, and there have been some interesting revelations about the staff at THP. I tried on over fifteen occassions to post my opinion about the whole mess, and not one of my posts appeared, despite the fact I have never had trouble posting there in the past. Dr.Rost was banned from blogging there, and there has been BLATANT content manipulation, through censoreship, on the various threads that have been posted about the matter. If you go back and follow it from the beginning, plus factor in the discoveries made by the Daily Kos and the Drudge Retort, as well as the comments by Rost’s followers on his blog, it becomes indisputable that The Huffington post has lost ALL CREDIBILITY. Now they have actually removed their “readers favorites” option, because it was quite obvious that the majority of the readership felt that the staff at THP was WAAAAAAY out of line. You can kiss THAT blog goodbye, its toast. I see NO WAY they can regain their credibility short of FIRING their techie, making a very loud and convincing APOLOGY to the posters there, and instituting a policy that guarantees we will not see a repeat of such obvious and blatant manipulation of thread content.
    Heres Rost’s blog address…
    http://peterrost.blogspot.com/
    Heres the Daily Kos account of it…..
    http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2006/6/23/02222/6466
    And you can go into the archives at the Hiuffington blog and find the threads about the issue. They are eye opening, indeed.

    Reply

  12. Dons Blog says:

    I can still see everything but the home page. If it was spam then I don’t think I’d be able to access any of the other pages. I get in by using a link to the archives from google.
    I don’t know what kind of code your home page is written in, but I’d look in there.
    The comments not popping up seems to be connected to some Norton (Symantec) code to prevent pop-ups. I’ve looked at twn.js in both firefox and IE and it’s the same, so I don’t think it’s a pop-up blocker unless it’s the google toolbar.
    In javascript window.open is being replaced by SymWinOpen, and the old window.open doesn’t do anything. Replace window.open with SymRealWinOpen in OpenComments and they should start working again.

    Reply

  13. Maude says:

    The web site came up fine for me this morning. I have dial up.
    It could be an open relay that allows tons of spam.
    The IT admin is supposed to monitor and correct this.
    There may be a back door.
    This sounds like someone is messing with the site.
    If a site is flooded with spam or some other data, it jams the works.
    Of course, this happens when you’re in Oman.
    Maude

    Reply

  14. Dons Blog says:

    Hi Steve,
    It would seem only your home page is missing. The archives and individual comment pages are working fine. Maybe the alias that tells the webserver what page to load when no page is specified? As in http://www.thewashingtonnote.com/
    Also, I’d guess that there’s a problem with the javascript that’s called with the “onclick” command when trying to get to the comment window. I haven’t stepped through it because I’d assumed your webperson was on it.
    I don’t see any indication that this is a bandwidth, but maybe your database is running out of connections.
    Let me know if I can help.
    -Don-

    Reply

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