My alias is JW Smythe. In my years of working with people, I've found it can be dangerous to give
too much information to the general public. There are just too many people of questionable mental
status out there to give my real name freely. It's probably nothing personal against you, and in a business
situation, you will receive all my real information.
I came to this decision a long time ago, after coworkers were harassed by customers outside of work.
What's it like to have a customer who is dissatisfied with the company you work for, calling you at home;
showing up at your house; sending threatening letters; making threatening phone calls? These were all
because that company didn't live up to that particular customer's expectations. That wasn't a gray-market
company. The product and services were clearly outlined, and provided in accordance to that. Still,
the same people who yell at cashiers in the grocery store because the line was too long, will take
unexpected measures in the professional world too.
Now, in this age of identity theft, the privacy of your own information is that much more sacred.
I may as well be using "BeerStud3" or "HoneyBee23". (kudos to anyone who knows where those came from)
Selecting my alias was a very careful process. Everyone should select their very carefully too. I feel
that mine is anonymous enough to give me privacy, vauge enough to be the "every man", yet it clearly
identifies me. As far as I know, there are no other "JW Smythe"'s running around on the Internet. At least no one has ever mistaken me for anyone other than me. It's a nice contrast. In real life, I've had people mess up my name, mistake my name for others, and assume family relations that don't exist. "Oh, your last
name is ___, you MUST be related to Steve." Even though I explain that I have no family within 1000 miles
of their state, and there is no Steve in my family, they don't get it.
Who Is JW Smythe
JWSmythe in the news
I am the owner, editor, and publisher of Free Internet Press. I came up with the original concept,
do all the programming, and technical maintaince for the site. Much of the actual content is edited by
the other editor, Intellpuke. I assure you, that's another individual's alias. Together, we make
Free Internet Press work on a daily basis.
JWSmythe at Slashdot
I am a freqent reader of Slashdot.org, and sometimes I'll even post. It depends on my mood, time
on my hands, etc. Slashdot, although a huge geeks club, is a great source for information (sometimes).
Through the journals, I've been able to meet some great talented individuals, and exchange ideas.
Sometimes, I forget how big the Internet really is, until in conversation our locations slip out. I
may have been talking about some higher level ideas with someone in Europe, or the South Pacific, and
not even realized it.
JWSmythe first site on the Internet
This site is currently down, pending the DNS change by the gen.fl.us hostmaster.
JW Smythe At Work
For the last 10 years, I have worked as the Senior Systems Administrator for two different Internet
companies. Most frequently, we are tagged for what we do. I am a high level guru/geek. That label
is usually dependant on what you need. "Oh Guru, fix this for me...", or "He's the geek that makes
People ask for what I know how to do. I try to explain that it's easier to go through their list
of expectations, and see if there's anything I don't know yet. Even the exceptions in my list are
far from a problem. I know what I do because I've needed to learn.