20 % of the Customers Drink 80 % of the Beer

That version of the the 80/20 Rule is attributed to an English pub keeper. It’s an informal summary of the Pareto distribution, a power-law probability phenomenon that describes a great deal of human behavior. The Pareto distribution suggests it is usually the case in an organization with a statistically large population that a group about the size of the square root of the total population produces half of the organization’s beneficial work.

This tells us why Elon Musk is probably right and Robert Reich is probably wrong.

If Twitter had 7500 employees when Musk took over, something on the order of 87 were probably carrying half the real productive load. Firing only half the staff wouldn’t get rid of enough deadwood.

I’m looking forward to seeing how Twitter will be reshaped.

Cleaning House at Twitter

Elon Musk has announced Twitter 2.0 and is taking the company back into startup mode. At midnight PT, employees received an email telling them to expect long hours and high performance standards. They were given until close of business Thursday to either sign on to the new program or take three months’ severance pay.

A few dedicated hardcore engineers will generally deliver a better product than a large team of 9-to-5ers. Think of the Macintosh computer ecosystem versus Windows 95 or the reusable SpaceX Falcon 9 versus the finally flying SLS.

I’ve been on several the kind of engineering teams that Musk is trying to form at Twitter. I’ve even had the privilege of leading one. It can be exhilarating. It can be draining. And it’s for the young. I’ll be 75 on New Year’s Eve, and I’ve had to slow down a bit, but I still find myself working overtime to get things not just right but the best they can be.

Twitter is noticeably better since Musk bought it. I look forward to seeing what he can do with the deadwood out of the way.

UPDATE—Corrected the drop dead date for getting with new program.

Team Kimberlin Post of the Day

It’s said that you know you’re over the target when you’re taking flak. During the more active phase of my interactions with Team Kimberlin, I knew I’d hit a nerve when one of them, usually Bill Schmalfeldt, made me the subject of a Twitter account. This TKPOTD ran nine years ago today.

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@PFBROFL!

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It’s a bit of a surprise that this would up being one of the account Schmalfeldt abandoned rather than one that was suspended for a rule violation. In this case it would have been for impersonation. Note the “Westminster, MD • hogewash.com” tag.

Team Kimberlin Post of the Day

I’m so old I can remember when there was a reasonable chance of Twitter acting responsibly to deal with harassment. The TKPOTD for eight years ago today dealt with one of the enforcement actions they took against Bill Schmalfeldt.

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I wish to express my thanks to Twitter for suspending the sockpuppet/impersonation @wjjjhoge account.

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Fair enforcement of understandable rules by Twitter didn’t last long. In April, 2015, I became one of the first conservatives to be permanently banned from Twitter. They didn’t have all the bugs worked out on banning conservatives in my case, so they wound up reinstating the @wjjhoge account when the false charges filed against me by Brett Kimberlin were dropped.

Team Kimberlin Post of the Day

Just like all the other members of Team Kimberlin, Neal Rauhauser is a failure. He’s the author of the pro se litigation scheme that backfired so wonderfully against both Kimberlin and Schmalfeldt. While he had some short-term success doing social engineering for leftwing organizations, almost everything he has touched turned to lead instead of gold.

One of Rauhauser’s failed projects was a plot to get bloggers who were writing about Team Kimberlin thrown off of Twitter. His plan wasn’t well thought out and was poorly executed. It led to this post from eight years ago today which asked “Is #NealRauhauser Buying His Plans From Acme?

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Neal Rauhauser has tipped his hand on his formerly sooooper seekrit plan to get a bunch nefarious right wing nut jobs (including me) off of Twitter. He’s been recording and archiving our “offending” tweets. He taken my name 1861 times so far which amounts to just over 1/3 of the total bad tweets he’s logged.

I feel like such a slacker.

Stacy McCain LOLs about Neal’s silliness here.

UPDATE—Neal’s list was supposed to inspire “panic” and cause “massive deletions.”

Uh, huh.

He panicked and deleted his list within a few hours.

LOL.

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Rauhauser’s idea about using false accusations of targeted abuse did achieve a temporary bit of success a couple of years later when I was permanently banned from Twitter for targeted abuse. The ban was based on false accusations made by Brett Kimberlin when he filed a peace order petition against me in the name of his wife’s elder daughter. When the peace order petition was denied and denied again on appeal, the Kimberlin’s filed a false criminal complaint alleging the same set of facts. Because the facts couldn’t be proved to the preponderance of evidence standard for the peace order, there was no way the evidence could lead to a conviction under the higher standard required for a criminal case, the State’s Attorney quickly dropped the charge.

A few days after the charge was dropped, Twitter contacted me and offered me my account back. I’ve been back without issues for over six years, and Twitter is not as careless about what they say about suspended accounts or to whom they say it.

Team Kimberlin Post of the Day

Team Kimberlin’s campaign attempting use lawfare in the form of defamation LOLsuits and bogus criminal charges as a means of silencing their critics blew up in their faces when almost all of the defendants vigorously stood up for our First Amendment free speech and free press rights. Eight years ago today, I wrote this post, Blog It Now, about why we bloggers were pushing back against being cancelled.

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In an earlier post today I alluded to Edward R. Murrow’s 1954 See It Now broadcast about Senator Joseph McCarthy. Whether or not one agrees with Murrow’s conclusions, that broadcast is an excellent example of using someone’s own words as criticism against him. Given the various lawfare tactics used by Team Kimberlin over the past couple of years, I’d like to offer this paraphrase of Murrow’s closing words from that broadcast:

We will not be driven by fear if we dig deep in our history and our doctrine and remember that we are not descended from fearful men—not men who feared to write, to speak, to associate, and to defend their causes. This is no time for men who oppose Team Kimberlin’s methods to keep silent. We can deny our heritage and our history, but we cannot escape responsibility for the result. There is no way for a free citizen to abdicate his responsibility. As bloggers we have come into our full inheritance at a tender age. We proclaim ourselves defenders of free speech wherever it exists, but we cannot defend freedom for ourselves by deserting it for others.

The actions of the Cabin Boy from Team Kimberlin have caused alarm and dismay to some amongst our ranks and have given considerable comfort to the enemies of free speech. And whose fault is that? Not really his. He didn’t create a situation of fear; he has merely been used to exploit it. If we allow him to succeed, then Cassius was right. “The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, but in ourselves.”

Good night and good luck. Stay tuned.

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I’m beginning to believe that Kimberlin’s lawfare was a dry run for a proposed larger use of defamation lawsuits by the Left for the purpose of shutting down effective voices on the Right. The initial proposal for the lawsuits came from a minor-league Democrat operative named Neal Rauhauser. Rauhuaser, who appears to have connections to Democrats such as Anthony Weiner, was working with Kimberlin during the period when the first cases were filed. He theorized that the targeted defendants would be intimidated by the suits and would settle out of court. However, it turned out that while we were deplorable, we weren’t a bunch of Neanderthals, and we weren’t frightened and confused by the modern legal system. We fought back and won.

Lawsuits have been a favorite tool for the Left, but I believe Kimberlin’s rather spectacular failures have caused the Left to look for different means of stifling the Right’s free speech, and I note, for example, Twitter began seriously purging accounts of folks on the Right within days of Kimberlin’s first RICO LOLsuit being dismissed.

We won the skirmish with Team Kimberlin because we had the facts and the law on our side and because we were in a venue where the facts and the law mattered.

The battle over cancellation is now in a venue where neither the facts nor the law will matter. If we can’t move the contest to a more favorable venue, we will need to master the rules of the new battleground.

And soon.