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Deeker's Message of the Week

May 26, 2002

Getting the Red Out

If you look at the listing for the Contributed Stories there are noticeably far fewer Discontinued stories listed (the ones which are designated by a red marker ( ). While I wish I could say that the sharp decrease in the number of Discontinued stories is because everyone suddenly came through with finishing or at least continuing the stories they abandoned long ago, it is because I have made some significant changes to the way stories are listed and how I handle expiring the stories which are not updated.

As I had done before, the Discontinued stories are once again listed on their own page.. There are some changes, however, to be noted:

For Those Who Missed Last Week's Early Deadline

Last week I had a sudden change of plans for which I was not prepared to announce sooner that I would need to do an early update. As a result of this I updated my site before 8:00 AM mountain time and I did not include anything received the previous Saturday evening or on that morning. As I indicated that I would do, I have included these materials with this week's updates (mainly survey responses and diaper sighting reports.)

Shed a Little Light on the Subject Line

As some of you may know, there has been a rash of viruses and worms being emailed around. Because of this cyber-epidemic, I have received many suspicious emails recently. Some have even come from users with legitimate-looking names (i.e. words such as "diaper" appear in their username or email address.) Some have had innocuous-looking subject lines (some with a simple "hi") and some have been blank or just show "Re:". Others have been suspiciously vague or are even known subject lines which are indicative of a virus email. When I open these emails they are blank. There is nothing in the body and there are no attachments. I can only assume that these are attempted virus attacks. When they arrive they usually take a couple seconds to download (too long for an actual blank or short email to download), and the icon in my taskbar indicates that the email is being scanned by Norton Anti-Virus, which I religiously keep up to date. It seems that any such malicious code is removed from the email (I hope) before it gets to me. I have scanned for viruses just to be sure, and no viruses have appeared.

So why am I discussing this? I have come to realize that perhaps some of you sent me messages that I may have deleted without opening, thinking that they may contain a virus. If you did write to me recently but did not receive a reply, it is possible that yours may have been thought to be a virus-laden message. Specifically, I have avoided opening emails in which either nothing appears in the subject line, or the subject line message is suspiciously vague. To cite a specific example, I received an email with "hi" in the subject line. It turned out to be blank, and the sender's name was not familiar to me. A few days later I received another message with "hi" in the subject line. I kept it in my inbox unopened for a few days while trying to figure out how I could sneak a peak at it without possibly executing virus code which may bypass my NAV software. After downloading the latest definitions I opened it and it turned out to be a legitimate message.

Because of the uncertainty involved with opening emails with vague or blank subject lines, I would like to ask those of you who contact me via email, particularly first-timers whose names I may not be familiar with, to make your subject line more distinct, something that I will readily recognize as legitimate. This will increase your chances of receiving a response and not being falsely passed over as a possible virus carrier.

True Accounts

Once again I have received several True Account submissions which I am not going to post to my site because they are far too short to be worthy of posting. While I don't expect you to write a novel, at least provide more than a few sentences. Some of you probably have some fantastic stories to tell, but I don't want to encourage people to send me just anything, so I like to only post submissions which are of sufficient length to be worthy of inclusion.

If you are not inclined to write much, either post a short blurb about yourself in the Guestbook, or take the Survey and answer the questions there, as these questions will tell a lot about yourself (or your brother if you are qualified to take either the Sister or the Brother survey).

Also, somebody sent to me a "True Account", which actually turned out to be the first few parts of a fictional story (though it does not appear on this site due to content which appears later on.) As I was reading it I realized how familiar it looked (I had read it several years ago, up to the point that the content written into it caused me to lose interest). All I can say to this is, "nice try!"

Missing in Action

The following is a list of people whom I tried to contact this past week, but was unsuccessful in doing so due to bounced emails. If you are reading this, please contact me.

NameDate attempted to contactMessage
Jon M.05/16/02 I tried to send you some drawings, but your mailbox was full, so I tried to notify you of this in order to receive more drawings (assuming your mail could at least handle a short message). This, too, bounced.

Site Outages

There was another outage late Thursday night/early Friday morning (for those of you in western time zones). Please bear with me on these outages. The person responsible for running the servers is aware of this and has been tweaking things to prevent further outages (sorry, no technical details to share.)

Diaper Boy Drawings

A few samples of my diaper boy drawings are posted. If you want me to send you the entire collection of ../Images to date (over 800 .gif format ../Images, contained in 23 zip files), just submit your request here. The files will be sent one at a time and are, on average, about 550-600K.

Story Statistics

Due to the outages and other problems encountered with the servers this past week I did not receive any reports on the number of hits on each story. Sorry again. Hopefully by next week there will be some numbers in this section.

* * * * *

For those of you in the U.S., have a great Memorial Day weekend. For everyone else, well, have a great weekend anyway. I'll be gone camping until Monday evening and I will probably not answer any email that night. In any case I'll get back to you. Stay happy and thickly diapered!

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