Alaska Democratic Representative Mike Doogan didn’t like the attention of blogger AKMuckraker – proprietor of The Mudflats Blog and a person who had become internationally famous as a source of local commentary and information regarding Governor Sarah Palin – so he chose to stalk this blogger and publicly expose her real name.
This, in my opinion, is a of breach of trust – not to mention an example of immature and vindictive behavior – which is so fundamental that it raises serious question as to whether Rep. Doogan should hold public office.
Here is the letter sent this morning to MudFlats uers such as myself:
You may recall that some time ago Rep Mike Doogan was sending some crazy emails to people who emailed him and AKMuckraker was one of the bloggers involved in exposing his craziness.
Apparently this did not sit well with Rep Doogan. He has been trying to find out who AKMuckraker was for several months now and he has finally managed to do it. He then sent out a message to people on his mailing list via his official legislative newsletter, advising them of the real name of AKMuckraker.
Whether or not people support AKMuckrakers opinions, it seems most people support her right to remain anonymous. We feel it is a right that everyone on the internet is entitled to – people make the decision for their own reasons, some because they have been cyber stalked in the past, some to prevent being cyber-stalked in the future.
This may be the first known case of an anonymous blogger being cyber-stalked by a politician determined to find out their real identity and out them, though!
We are not certain at this stage but it is possible that Rep Doogan has broken the law, and there may be legal action that AKMuckraker can take. Whether or not AKMuckraker chooses to do that is another question and one I am sure she will consider this carefully over the coming days.
You can read posts from bloggers on this subject via the following links –
We also have a thread on this on the forums, where you can feel free to add your comments.
Updates and possible calls for action will be posted in that thread, so make sure to check it regularly. We will also try and keep up with links to posts on the subject – and possibly media stories.
You may find it difficult to access the mudflats blog and forums over the next few days – especially if the mainstream media pick up this story – until we move them to a server with a larger capacity. This will cost us around $200 a month but we feel that the demand for accessing the sites over the next few weeks will make it difficult for the usual mudflats readers to keep up to date, so we are biting the bullet and hoping that people will assist with donations.
You can donate to AKMuckraker via the paypal buttons found on both the blog and the forums.
You can also email messages of support to AKMuckraker at firstname.lastname@example.org – be aware that a lot of people are doing so at the moment so you may not get a reply but we feel it is important to let AKMuckraker know that she is supported.
On behalf of The Mudflats Team.
Many of you may be aware that I am an advocate of Verified Identity in the political blogosphere. Verified Identity would be a set of mechanisms (which as yet do not exist) that would provide bloggers with the ability to prove that they are real individuals (such as using a driver’s license) and not sockpuppets. This would not necessarily be the same as using real names (though I encourage that as well), and even using this approach the real names of bloggers who choose to be publicly anonymous would be protected. Further, I would suggest that even on a theoretical blog where Verified Identity was implemented that truly anonymous users could still be allowed and readers could choose to view or not view these comments.
Regardless, AKMuckRaker is the proprietor of MudFlats and had chosen to maintain her own anonymity, a choice that has been negated by an elected official run, ahem, “amuck”. Rep. Doogan should face the strongest public scrutiny by his constituents, at the very least, legal consequences if at all possible and perhaps seek psychological counseling.