Many science bloggers are asking why Blogger.com deleted a science blog, ERV (endogenous retrovirus). The blogger, Abbie Smith, is a graduate student in HIV research. She has shown herself quite capable of debating pesudoscience floggers such as Michael Behe, pointing out their mistakes and lies, demanding proof of their claims, and tapping her foot while they come up empty. For this Behe calls her “some woman” (not virus researcher, not grad student, not young scientist) who’s a Mean Girl.
And then last week her blog suddenly disappeared from Blogger. It isn’t full of links. It’s not spam. It had no ads. So what happened? Did some small-minded creationist complain about her? Did Blogger yank the plug without investigating? Inquiring minds want to know, but there doesn’t seem to be any place to ask that question. It sounds like persecution to me. Is there a creationist “mole” at Blogger? Maybe it’s another “brilliant” idea of a vengeful pipsqueak like Mark Mathis.
ERV is back on blogger for now with no explanation offered to her as to the breach of service. ERV is pulling up stakes and transferring her articles to Scienceblogs.com, where there’s a committment to actually supporting science bloggers. Scienceblogs hosts the most popular science blog in the world, Pharyngula, and I expect the site to attract much more traffic for ERV.
Blogger’s treatment of ERV has made me think that I’d better accelerate the transfer of my Random Thoughts blog to WordPress, especially since Blogger’s published procedure for blog backup is a kludge that backs up only the last 500 posts.