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Andrew Konisberg Male, 51, France (7/1/2005 11:32:00 AM)

(This massage was posted as a reply to that message)

My posting has nothing to do with Collette's comments below, But I would like to take this opportunity to say something. Long-time members will know that the Poemhunter relationship between myself and Herbert Nehrlich has been acrimonious, to put it mildly. Initially, and in the days before Collette, our dispute was a classic case of 'chatroom flaming' whereby people who don't know eachother trade insults...I am aware that there may have been a bit of antagonism on both sides, but I never regarded the matter as serious. However, the matter became serious and very hostile when I received 3 e-mails that attacked the Jewish race in the most evil and juvenile manner that could have been dreamt up. One of these e-mails purported to be from 'Herbert Nehrlich' and the other two from 'Captain Envy' (I kid you not) . Needless to say, such was the level of filth contained within one of these e-mails in particular, my ire was raised and I made it known to the forum as to my contempt for the attitude of Herbert. I also sent these messages to management 24 hours before a rather public spat with Herbert which resulted in his writing the poem 'Jews'. For me, Herbert's authorship of the poem 'Jews' seemed to confirm his authorship of the 3 e-mails that I had received. However, I contacted a friend of mine to try and trace the source of these e-mails because Herbert was categoric in his denial of writing them, which baffled me, and I did not take kindly to being called a liar. This is only an internet chatroom, but I believe some comments are too perverted and serious to ignore; 'flaming' is one thing, and a bit of fun or personal insults are to be expected, but comments concerning necrophilia and members of Belsen are NEVER acceptable to my mind. The upshot of several weeks of investigation, has proven that there were flaws in the Poemhunter log-on process and failings in other areas as well, making it possible for one member to pose as another if they followed a certain procedure. A simple way of getting people to understand such a thing was possible is the 'My Friends' list. Formerly, one could bypass being on another member's 'BANNED' list and still send them a message. The way one would do this, as a few members worked out, is to put another member on one's own 'My friends' list. For some time, this action would over-ride being on another members 'banned' list.

Unfortunately, there were technical glitches in other areas as well. I was formerly unaware of them as I believe most people are/were. These 'loopholes' have now been tightened up and such corruption of the system is no longer so easily possible. I am glad to report that a lengthy investigation as to who sent me evil e-mails has revealed that Herbert Nehrlich was NOT the author of them. These e-mails were written by the member(s) who used the name 'Erwin Baxter' and I have been informed that some action upon the matter of this member's Ip address (independent of anyone involved with Poemhunter management, I hasten to add) has been taken. Never-the-less, all it would take is a new IP address for 'Erwin Baxter' to return to the site. However, we now are blessed with the presence of Collette as regards forum contributions and poem commentary. AND I can assure the people responsible for 'Erwin Baxter' that if they attempt any future nonsense that the matter will be resolved independently of Poemhunter, if again necessary.

And so, I am prepared to publicly apologise to Herbert, now the truth has come to light, for what transpired to be (unbeknownst to me for some time) a false accusation that he sent me 3 e-mails concerning Berger Belsen and necrophilia. I am sorry for any distress caused by this incorrect assertion. Herbert and I have exchanged private e-mails to attempt to sort this matter out and privately Herbert has accepted my apology for an inadvertent mistake on my part. I vowed to place a public apology on the forum, as I believe 'Erwin Baxter' caused unnecessary trouble upon this site which nearly resulted in bringing the site to its knees. Suffice to say, I have nothing but contempt for the people responsible for 'Erwin Baxter'. The only positive aspects of the actions of 'Erwin Baxter' are that Poemhunter has been forced to tighten up its security loopholes, and such flagrant abuses of the system should no longer be possible.
I offer Herbert the hand of reconciliation and I offer the opportunity that we may read and comment upon eachother's poems constructively. Herbert and I have both offered to end our feud in private e-mails of the last 24 hours. I will not get involved in the disputes between Herbert and other members because I can only deal with my own situation, in fairness. Besides, I have commented upon unfounded statements made against Michael Sheperd and others previously. So Herbert, I offer a complete apology for believing you were the author of 3 despicable e-mails and being, as I have recently discovered, incorrect in my belief. You have been vindicated, Herbert. I am only sorry that 'Erwin Baxter' chose to cause such chaos and acrimony on this site. And I offer that all my future dealings with you will be cordial and constructive, in lieu of the fact that a third-party was responsible for 99% of the trouble. Our previous disputes (prior to the Belsen e-mails) , I feel, had been a case of strong-wills and an enjoyment of a good row. But now, we have the opportunity to make this site a more pleasurable place for both of us.

all the best, Andrew.

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  • Rookie Herbert Nehrlich1 (7/1/2005 5:17:00 PM) Post reply
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    I like a man who stands up to be counted because he is one who can be counted upon. Perhaps not the most elegant English but the truth nonetheless.
    Andrew I have long suspected that there was a decent person hiding behind this situational chaos, the emerging end of the war gives me great pleasure and I look forward to reading your poetry again and perhaps make a few civil comments as well.
    I appreciate your apology, which feels a bit like overkill to me in light of the fact that my behaviour has been less than laudable. I take the opportunity therefore to say 'SORRY' for any discomfort, embarrassment and inconvenience that my actions have caused you. And, while I am at it, I want to add that I am truly sorry also about the unacceptable comments I have made about and to Michael Shepherd. Most of this strife originated in the heat of the battle, which in itself is no excuse but may help to explain why it got so terribly out of hand. I have a tendency to react to perceived attacks by shooting back with bigger and more noisy bullets and that is how things escalate.

    Again, I am pleased that the sun of civil behaviour is coming over the horizon and I look forward to a new era of life on P/H.
    Best wishes

  • Rookie Richard George (7/1/2005 2:18:00 PM) Post reply

    I think Archbishop Desmond Tutu may have the last word: 'It is large-hearted and courageous people who are able to say 'Sorry'.'

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