Wally: As someone who shares The Common Ills with everyone I know, I appreciate Michael's passion for and love of the community. But I think the boycott idea was a mistake for all the reasons outlined.
I'd also add that if Michael's wanting to keep it real, the easiest way is not to say 'Don't link to them!' but to e-mail in something to link to. You don't like site A well go to another site and find something you like and e-mail that in to share with the community.
When the petition landed in my inbox today [Wednesday] I deleted it and assumed most other members would as well.
If you want to make a difference, forget trying to get someone to link to the site and focus instead on sharing it with people you know. Word of mouth from someone you know always means more than anything else.
Michael's right that no 1 wants to talk about the "night letter." That's their loss. It's one more reason to be a member here.
On the left right now, you've got blogs dissin a woman's right to choose, you've got people writing up entries on Michael Jackson, and other nonsense. So ask yourself, "Do you really want one of those sites to link to the community?"
We're a community and we don't survive or fall by the links. I think Michael's a recent member and I do understand his feelings because I was a lot like that too back in January. But with time you'll figure out that all we need is each other and that the community was built on that.