PittGirl preemptively outed herself today, so she's back, blogging, under her real name (Virginia Montanez, Ginny to her friends and family), now at That's Church. You can find it on the blogroll to the left.

I never added PittGirl / The Burgh Blog to the Pittsblog blogroll because that brand of snark -- snark for snark's sake, snark just to entertain -- didn't interest me. I have two teenagers in my family (well, I had two teenagers); I have enough snark for snark's sake in my life. And taking aim at things like Ben Roethlisberger and pigeons is like shooting fish in a barrel, even if PittGirl did it with enormous wit and verve.

So, now Virginia Montanez is out. That took some courage, even cohones, something rarely seen in Pittsburgh media. (Sound of two hands clapping.)

She's still got enormous wit and verve. And her fans call her Your Majesty, or a Pittsburgh superhero, or both. They love the snark.

But I'm hoping that she's got more than mere snark in her arsenal this time. What Pittsburgh needs is its own Stephen Colbert (the fictional Stephen Colbert, not the real Stephen Colbert): Snark directed at things that matter, as well as at the occasional thing that doesn't.

Is Virginia Montanez the one? Here's hoping.


11 Responses to "Out"

Matt H said... 8/19/2009 12:05 PM

What took courage? How was this courageous?

Mike Madison said... 8/19/2009 12:11 PM

She could have just shut the whole thing down. Or she could have started blogging anew under her real name, without connecting it to PittGirl. Instead, Virginia M. took ownership of PittGirl and whatever baggage that brings. Maybe all of the anxiety will prove to be overblown in retrospect, as anxiety over anonymity often is. But that doesn't make the decision any easier ex ante.

Matt H said... 8/19/2009 6:48 PM

I think it's all overblown. Most people at her work probably didn't even care about it.

Anna said... 8/20/2009 2:55 PM

She was fired this morning. Still think it's all overblown?

Anonymous said... 8/20/2009 9:34 PM

I almost got fired for using the initials in a blog post of company that did business with my employer. Mixing business and blogging can have serious consequences. Montanez had to almost expect this--you can't rant against someone who donates money to the NPO that employs you and get away with it. I'm sure if she's is worth her snuff as a marketing/communication professions, she knew it was coming.

Anna said... 8/20/2009 11:08 PM

Of course she knew it was coming. That's the whole point.

People accused her of being overly dramatic for saying that she would lose her job if her identity was discovered. She decided to reveal herself knowing that she would likely lose her job.

Pinto said... 8/21/2009 3:20 PM

Matt -- what is your beef with Virginia? You've been rallying against her on her blog and on other blogs like this. Just wondering what the problem is here.

Bram Reichbaum said... 8/21/2009 6:01 PM

I just want to reiterate what I wrote on 2PJs, and reiterate that it's NOT a slight against this one organization in particular: firing someone for blogging just isn't right. I don't care that it's acceptable for some reason.

Is it acceptable to fire someone for writing a letter to the editor? For wearing a button, or for affixing a bumper sticker to their car? How about for talking? For joining a civic organization?

I recognize freedom of speech applies only to the state and criminalization, not to the workplace and employment, but it's still wrong wrong wrong wrong wrong. As self-publishing becomes more and more a part of the culture, I don't know how it's going to be sustainable either.

Again, I don't want to take it out on this organization for a variety of obvious reasons -- but this "acceptable" inevitability needs to be opposed and overturned.

Matt H said... 8/21/2009 6:34 PM

"She was fired this morning. Still think it's all overblown?"

It was. She outed herself. If she would have just stayed quiet about it she would still have a job.

"Matt -- what is your beef with Virginia? You've been rallying against her on her blog and on other blogs like this. Just wondering what the problem is here."

Because it's nuts that is has received so much attention. I don't believe her motives in outing herself. She seems smart enough to have known that outing herself wasn't called for. Just because some news people thought they knew her identity doesn't mean they would have been able to prove it.

Anonymous said... 8/23/2009 5:08 PM

Bram et al:
What would you say if she got fired for BLOGGING ON THE JOB?! She posted 3 or 4 times per day, during work hours. Why is everyone overlooking the fact that she was goofing off on the job? Regardless of the subjects she wrote about, how would you feel if you donated your hard-earned money to a charity only to learn that the money you donated was going to pay the salary of someone who blogged all day long? Why is NO ONE addressing THAT side of the story?!!!!!

Bram Reichbaum said... 8/24/2009 2:13 PM

You know Anon 5:08, that facet occurred to me just last night.

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Pittsblog 2.0 is written by Mike Madison, a law professor at the University of Pittsburgh. Send email to michael.j.madison[at]gmail.com. Mike also blogs at Madisonian.net, on law and technology. Chris Briem of Null Space drops by from time to time.

All opinions expressed at Pittsblog 2.0 are those of their respective authors and of no one (and no thing) else, least of all the University of Pittsburgh.

Pittsblog 2.0 has a motto: "It's steel good in Pittsburgh." Say it aloud, with a Pittsburgh accent.

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