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(22,047 posts)
Mon Aug 10, 2020, 03:32 PM Aug 2020

Meet the new boss, same as the old boss [View all]

Hi everyone,

If you haven't seen Skinner's announcement yet, I suggest you check it out before reading this. But here's the bottom line: I'm the new owner of Democratic Underground.

Back in the summer of 2000, David Allen was running a one-man design shop for local small businesses and the occasional Democratic Congressperson who needed one of those new-fangled "websites" that everybody was talking about. Having picked up more work than he could handle alone, he hired me to help out. Just a few short months later -- inspired by the Bush coup of 2000 and our discovery of FreeRepublic.com -- we came up with the crazy idea of trying to build an online home for folks on the left; a place to get away from the conservative propaganda and trolls that infested the message boards of the era, and fight back against the right-wing media machine. David and I launched Democratic Underground on January 20, 2001. He called himself "Skinner," I called myself "EarlG," and a few months later "Elad" joined the team, first as a volunteer programmer and later as a full-time employee.

I remember well a sneering post on Free Republic at the time they first discovered the new DU. A Freeper wrote, "Whatever. Go back in eight months time and they won't even be there."

Twenty years later, we're still here.

Sometimes it's hard to believe that DU has been around since before Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube. DU was even around before "blogs" were a thing -- heck, we're only two-and-a-bit years younger than Google! Many, many sites have come and gone over the last twenty years, but DU is still going strong. And that is all thanks to David's efforts.

I understand and respect David's decision to move on, and I know for a fact that he has never wanted anything but the best for DU. I have personally witnessed him agonizing over difficult, sometimes impossible decisions on how to run the place. He is literally the most fair-minded person I have ever met, and he always wanted to do his best for everyone who posted here -- even the people who hated his guts. He didn't make much money doing this, and a lot of people spread a lot of nasty stuff around the Internet about him over the years. Speaking as someone who watched him work every day, I can tell you that it was 100% garbage. David always had my back, and never let me down, and if I can do just one thing for DU, it will be to do my best to keep running this place the way he would want it to be run -- as fairly and equitably as possible. And I'm deeply grateful to him for giving me the opportunity to do that.

I'm going to miss working with David. He's taken me to some amazing places -- I'm sure you recall our reports from past Democratic National Conventions -- and he gave me the freedom to be creative in a way that I can't imagine any other boss would have. Honestly, if I wasn't doing this, I don't know what else I could do.

Hopefully, I'll be able to build on his legacy. Next year will be our twentieth year in operation, and I think that DU is due for a new coat of paint. So next week we're going to run a Summer membership drive -- one which old-time DUers may get a kick out of! -- and once we get past the election, our next project will be a visual refresh that, if all goes well, will keep in place all the things you love about DU, while making it a little easier to read and navigate -- and maybe even add in a few new features.

In case you're worried about any of that stuff, please don't be. Like you, I love DU -- it's the first place I go in the morning, and the last place I go at night, and I'm here all day in between. This is our home on the Internet, and my goal is to keep it that way. I hope you'll stick with Elad and I as we move forward.

Here's to Skinner, and to DU.

-- EarlG

218 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
Highlight: NoneDon't highlight anything 5 newestHighlight 5 most recent replies
I'm good with it. FarPoint Aug 2020 #1
You got the key to the executive washroom, right? lpbk2713 Aug 2020 #2
And the parking spot. underpants Aug 2020 #5
As long as it's you wryter2000 Aug 2020 #3
Me too..a little heart flutter there.. mountain grammy Aug 2020 #76
Right?! ZenDem Aug 2020 #84
Yep. Me, too. calimary Aug 2020 #118
I'm still feeling the shock, but as long as it's EarG Hekate Aug 2020 #128
My heart just dropped at first, and then... "Whew! That's okay then!" crickets Aug 2020 #138
Exactly my spot today. Whew! We're in good hands. AllyCat Aug 2020 #169
Same here. highplainsdem Aug 2020 #181
So...where do I send my next donation? DU is my homepage irisblue Aug 2020 #4
😆 underpants Aug 2020 #6
LOL geardaddy Aug 2020 #24
As long as Grovelbot rejects any ties to Russian bots IronLionZion Aug 2020 #82
Grovelbot! wryter2000 Aug 2020 #162
Robb is a Dingbat jpak Aug 2020 #7
Made me laugh out loud! MuseRider Aug 2020 #46
Oh my gay stars! trof Aug 2020 #123
Kudzu - it's going places. GoneOffShore Aug 2020 #173
Don't tutch the butt. murielm99 Aug 2020 #198
Breastfeeding pitbulls with children in Olive Garden eating fried chicken with cornflakes. GoneOffShore Aug 2020 #199
Where is the door buzzard? murielm99 Aug 2020 #203
He's owed expenses and beer money! GoneOffShore Aug 2020 #204
OMG murielm99 Aug 2020 #205
The door buzzard told me that it was important. GoneOffShore Aug 2020 #206
Call Congress murielm99 Aug 2020 #208
I'm SERIES!!111!!! GoneOffShore Aug 2020 #209
We had kudzu already. murielm99 Aug 2020 #210
I remember waiting for 20 minutes for that thread to load completely. GoneOffShore Aug 2020 #211
You have to release the duck before you get your star back. GoneOffShore Aug 2020 #207
Congratulations, EarlG! Kid Berwyn Aug 2020 #8
Here's to the next 20 years, Cheers! n/t sazemisery Aug 2020 #9
Wishing you all the best! secondwind Aug 2020 #10
Congratulations! cayugafalls Aug 2020 #11
Congrats, EarlG SheltieLover Aug 2020 #12
That's funny because I learned of DU on FreeRepublic underpants Aug 2020 #13
Fellow old-timer bluescribbler Aug 2020 #34
Loved the top 10, that's what brought me to DU mdbl Aug 2020 #194
That's how I found DU also - someone posted the top 10 in a music forum TBF Sep 2020 #217
A cherry on top would be a return of the Duzys dixiegrrrrl Aug 2020 #103
Me as well, someone there gave me the URL. Throckmorton Aug 2020 #200
Hear, hear, and congratulations. DinahMoeHum Aug 2020 #14
Looking forward to another 20 years and beyond. cry baby Aug 2020 #15
We're in good hands with our new Captain! hedda_foil Aug 2020 #16
I'm looking forward to the fund drive! lunatica Aug 2020 #17
congrats EarlG IcyPeas Aug 2020 #18
Good LuckK Thank you for all you do!!! Pepsidog Aug 2020 #19
Good Luck! Thank you for all you do!!! Pepsidog Aug 2020 #20
Glad the site will continue and still have BootinUp Aug 2020 #21
We're in good hands bluescribbler Aug 2020 #22
Keep on keepin' on. democrank Aug 2020 #23
Here's to you, to Skinner and to DU! pandr32 Aug 2020 #25
:) Here's to the next 20 years. Thank you for taking on the future. Hortensis Aug 2020 #26
That's definitely news. Laelth Aug 2020 #27
Bwaaaahaha! Wawannabe Aug 2020 #72
Congrats, EarlG! PunkinPi Aug 2020 #28
So glad you stuck with us! Will be glad to donate for that new coat of paint. octoberlib Aug 2020 #29
Well now you know BumRushDaShow Aug 2020 #30
Thank you seta1950 Aug 2020 #31
Good Luck! SallyHemmings Aug 2020 #32
All Hail EarlG!!! calguy Aug 2020 #33
OMG you just made me cry damn it! Sedona Aug 2020 #35
Hey, EarlG, even as Skinner is a hard act to follow, you have shown your mettle ... MFGsunny Aug 2020 #36
Congratulations on becoming the new boss of DU, my dear EarlG! CaliforniaPeggy Aug 2020 #37
I read Skinner's. Now this. Already feeling a pang. Solly Mack Aug 2020 #38
I know, right?! Delphinus Aug 2020 #51
I know. Solly Mack Aug 2020 #107
OMG. I was in my forties when I joined DU. Ilsa Aug 2020 #213
I joined in 2016. Delmette2.0 Aug 2020 #39
Congratulations on your new(ish) roll here! herding cats Aug 2020 #40
Congrats and best of luck. safeinOhio Aug 2020 #41
"Many Years In Health and Happiness!" eom sprinkleeninow Aug 2020 #42
Don't change it too much, too fast! You got a lot of geezers here. I'm still trying to get DU3 ... marble falls Aug 2020 #43
Thank you EarlG. A few minutes ago my wife told me DU was sold but all was ok. As you said, c-rational Aug 2020 #44
Does this mean Discussionist is coming back? Renew Deal Aug 2020 #45
Huzzah, Huzzah, Huzzah!!! IADEMO2004 Aug 2020 #47
Congrats EarlG and I have idea about new members Soph0571 Aug 2020 #48
I'm going to finis this paragraph for you mercuryblues Aug 2020 #49
Because freeperville is a money farm for RJ. Throckmorton Aug 2020 #201
True dat mercuryblues Aug 2020 #202
Way to go!! duhneece Aug 2020 #50
Congrats Earl G! kentuck Aug 2020 #52
Congratulations!! yowzayowzayowza Aug 2020 #53
My phone and inbox are filled with the demands for money. I am pledging 100 bucks for the fundraiser NBachers Aug 2020 #54
Nice. Good. Happy. lamp_shade Aug 2020 #55
Let's keep this long strange trip going! Roland99 Aug 2020 #56
I know EarlG and Elad will continue do a great job. I'm here to stay. judesedit Aug 2020 #57
Congratulations, EarlG! Heartstrings Aug 2020 #58
Aye Aye EarlG proud patriot Aug 2020 #59
Godspeed, my friend. Firestorm49 Aug 2020 #60
Glad DU stayed in the "family"... N_E_1 for Tennis Aug 2020 #61
Good luck, EarlG! Thanks for everything you do! pnwmom Aug 2020 #62
Sorry to see Skinner go. sheshe2 Aug 2020 #63
Looking forward to it! jorgevlorgan Aug 2020 #64
ONWARD AND FORWARD! BadGimp Aug 2020 #65
very cool. best wishes to you as you embark on ownership of this site SiliconValley_Dem Aug 2020 #66
Congratulations! I'm excited for you Alliepoo Aug 2020 #67
Congrats! peggysue2 Aug 2020 #68
EarlG Wawannabe Aug 2020 #69
Thanks for all you do! sarchasm Aug 2020 #70
Wow time marchs on...good luck Historic NY Aug 2020 #71
Re: Meet the new boss, same as the old boss... chwaliszewski Aug 2020 #73
This would be a more meaningful song by changing these four lines spike jones Aug 2020 #131
Thank you and Skinner for loving Democrats and this space where we love you back. ancianita Aug 2020 #74
I really like the current look and feel of DU. ClearSky24 Aug 2020 #75
We're with you all the way. Best of luck to you and Elad! Fla Dem Aug 2020 #77
I will be donating to Summer Drive on Sept. 3rd, when my next SS check comes. panader0 Aug 2020 #78
Glad we're still here. I'll be donating mountain grammy Aug 2020 #79
i will donate also trueblue2007 Aug 2020 #81
Nice send off to Skinner marked50 Aug 2020 #80
You're bringing back Grovelbot next week, aren't you? ms liberty Aug 2020 #83
The return of Grovelbot would be the icing on the cake! Glorfindel Aug 2020 #89
Congrats, and thanks for keeping this place going! GreenPartyVoter Aug 2020 #85
On we go.... StarryNite Aug 2020 #86
Pic of DU's first server klook Aug 2020 #87
Congrats, EarlG, on your acquisition of DU! Wishing you many happy (and not too contentious) years Mrs. Overall Aug 2020 #88
El pueblo unido struggle4progress Aug 2020 #90
Congratulations, EarlG! greatauntoftriplets Aug 2020 #91
Wow. I feel the earth move under my feet. Sorry Skinner is going. Thankfull applegrove Aug 2020 #92
Thank you EarlG! I for one am grateful that DU is in such capable hands. chowder66 Aug 2020 #93
Here's to you both... Mike Nelson Aug 2020 #94
Congratulations, EarlG! Glorfindel Aug 2020 #95
Thank you for taking over, EarlG, and keeping this placed going uppityperson Aug 2020 #96
DU has been my refuge hibbing Aug 2020 #97
Good luck! LanternWaste Aug 2020 #98
Hey Boss. JudyM Aug 2020 #99
Happy to support you and I love DU. phylny Aug 2020 #100
Welcome, Boss! lillypaddle Aug 2020 #101
Congrats EarlG & big thanks Skinner. A great home, DU's the best! appalachiablue Aug 2020 #102
Thank you, EarlG, for all of your hard work! Sloumeau Aug 2020 #104
Love this place alphafemale Aug 2020 #105
My first stop in the morning, & off & on all day. GentryDixon Aug 2020 #106
Thanks for continuing this refuge from the insanity. peacebuzzard Aug 2020 #108
Thank you for the past, and thank you for the future chia Aug 2020 #109
Congratulations, EarlG. So glad for you and that both you & Elad are staying! hlthe2b Aug 2020 #110
K&R ismnotwasm Aug 2020 #111
Cheers to you, Skinner, and DU! spicysista Aug 2020 #112
Congratulations cally Aug 2020 #113
... Yonnie3 Aug 2020 #114
I found you guys in 2004 when the John Kerry chat board shut down and I've been Vinca Aug 2020 #115
Pretty sure I don't have to say this, but... TygrBright Aug 2020 #116
+1...nt SidDithers Aug 2020 #184
Thank you, EarlG. gademocrat7 Aug 2020 #117
Thank you for continuing the hard work that is running the DU. I look forward to applegrove Aug 2020 #119
Congrats! JDC Aug 2020 #120
In this case, it's a really good thing. Welcome Boss Man! japple Aug 2020 #121
Let us know how to help Chicagogrl1 Aug 2020 #122
Carry on. The Wizard Aug 2020 #124
I for one welcome our new EarlG overlord. tanyev Aug 2020 #125
Congrats and looking forward to the next chapter of DU onenote Aug 2020 #126
Good luck EarlG and Elad, and long live DU! ucrdem Aug 2020 #127
Hard to believe it has been twenty years already PatSeg Aug 2020 #129
We knew you were the power behind the scenes all along Maeve Aug 2020 #130
Congratulations & all the best! DU is in capable hands & what you do is important Hekate Aug 2020 #132
Congratulations! MuseRider Aug 2020 #133
Skinner? Throckmorton Aug 2020 #134
Keep Calm and Carry On! k8conant Aug 2020 #135
Good luck with your new endeavor. ooky Aug 2020 #136
Congrats! Wish you good things marlakay Aug 2020 #137
Congratulations EarlG! Still Sensible Aug 2020 #139
CONGRATULATIONS to the New Boss! 👍🙂 nt Raine Aug 2020 #140
You rock! Kitchari Aug 2020 #141
Cheers to you! Wednesdays Aug 2020 #142
Congrats Earl tiptonic Aug 2020 #143
And cheers to you as well, EarlG. warmfeet Aug 2020 #144
Carry on! DownriverDem Aug 2020 #145
Wishing you all the best! Marthe48 Aug 2020 #146
Ya know skinner is due beer and travel money and many experiences. dmr Aug 2020 #147
+1 LiberalLoner Aug 2020 #148
thank GOD you were all able to keep it in the family orleans Aug 2020 #149
You guys have both been great to me for 14 years running. StrictlyRockers Aug 2020 #150
Thanks!! relayerbob Aug 2020 #151
Welcome aboard newb ornotna Aug 2020 #152
Congratulations! radical noodle Aug 2020 #153
I'm a late comer ( Dec 2004) sellitman Aug 2020 #154
Cheers, EarlG! cp Aug 2020 #155
Congratulations and good luck going forward! Totally Tunsie Aug 2020 #156
Thank god, when I saw David's OP I thought the board was done. Carry onward and upward! Eliot Rosewater Aug 2020 #157
We should never fear change....and I am delighted this big change went the way it did! NRaleighLiberal Aug 2020 #158
I'm right here, big guy. MrScorpio Aug 2020 #159
Thank you both for being here Catamount Aug 2020 #160
Thank you both for being here Catamount Aug 2020 #161
EarlG, congratulations on your new acquisition! Dem2theMax Aug 2020 #163
You and Elad are going to be great, EarlG! blogslut Aug 2020 #164
Thanks for sticking around, Earl G! BComplex Aug 2020 #165
I, for one, welcome our new Overlord. LudwigPastorius Aug 2020 #166
Good luck EarlG CatLady78 Aug 2020 #167
Congrats, EarlG and Elad. I came here from the Horse and Bartcop. That was a looooong time ago. Stinky The Clown Aug 2020 #168
Best of Luck ! Captain Zero Aug 2020 #170
Congratulations and Best of Luck! Lady_Chat Aug 2020 #171
Thanks, EarlG; elleng Aug 2020 #172
I am so pleased that you are willing to continue DU . Thank you. I am on board and will do my best Demsrule86 Aug 2020 #174
Thank you! Looking forward to the new adventure. All the best. ❤ lmsp littlemissmartypants Aug 2020 #175
EarlG, a HUGE THANK YOU for taking over the reins! Also feel like this is my home & tribe! Illumination Aug 2020 #176
Cool. n/t denbot Aug 2020 #177
We know that we are in good, safe hands with you and Brian, so we rest easy on that score, niyad Aug 2020 #178
I've been here since it was DCForum and we traded hacks with Dave Choi Blue_Adept Aug 2020 #179
Congrats, Dave! And thank you for taking on this responsibility and keeping this highplainsdem Aug 2020 #180
Congratulations EarlG!.... SidDithers Aug 2020 #182
Thank you, Captain Earlg. dreamland Aug 2020 #183
Wow, I just read Skinner's post.... Spazito Aug 2020 #185
Congrats! woodsprite Aug 2020 #186
Carry on, wayward soldier. malthaussen Aug 2020 #187
I am so glad that you are the new owner of DU. Doreen Aug 2020 #188
What I want to know DFW Aug 2020 #189
To Skinner, Earl G., and Elad. Thank, thank you, thank you. argyl Aug 2020 #190
Congrats! CrispyQ Aug 2020 #191
been here since almost the beginning.. SoCalDem Aug 2020 #192
Sorry to hear you're losing a partner but glad we're not losing you. discntnt_irny_srcsm Aug 2020 #193
Wise decision for all! Cheers! FailureToCommunicate Aug 2020 #195
Are you still going to post? AmyStrange Aug 2020 #196
Congrats on taking over the lead. Fancier digs than I thought...I pictured wooden crates, barrel Frustratedlady Aug 2020 #197
Cheers blueseas Aug 2020 #212
Best Wishes to you and Skinner..Today and Everyday!! Stuart G Aug 2020 #214
When my fist clenches, crack it open Harker Aug 2020 #215
Congratulations to you, EarlG for taking over DU. generalbetrayus Aug 2020 #216
coming back after a long absence Scout Jan 2021 #218
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