Saturday, November 15, 2008

Overstepping My Bounds

Today I received an e-mail from a William Tipton. I don't know Mr. Tipton personally, but I assumed that at one time he sent me an e-mail or an inquiry to one of my Tipton family web sites. All Tiptons that I receive e-mails from I add to my mailing list for Tipton genealogy assuming that they would also be interested in our common family genealogy. Each time I update my "Tipton Tales and Trails" blog, I send links to these e-mail addresses, assuming they would be interested in reading a blog about our family research. Since the evidence is abundantly clear that we Tiptons are all descended from the same common ancestor, a Jonathan Tipton who immigrated to this country in 1692 from Port Royale, Jamaica. Well, it appears that I have overstepped my bounds. William Tipton requested that I remove his name from mailing list, equating my e-mails with spam. If William Tipton intended to hurt me by his sarcastic and dismissive e-mail, he succeeded. I will honor his request and remove him from my mailing list. In fact, I'll do him one better. I will no longer send links to my postings on Tipton Tales and Trails to anyone. I understand that he does not want to be bothered and that is fine with me. I have encountered this attitude before among some Tiptons during my research on our common family tree. They do not want to be bothered. However, what I did think was unnecessary was his need to insult and dismiss me as a "genealogist" in parenthesis and a spam producer. But, be that as it may. It isn't the first time I've been slapped down for being altruistic. Probably won't be the last time either. On occasion in the past, I thought I would change the way I operate. However, I found it very difficult to be self-centered, selfish, and dismissive and hurtful to others. It's not in my nature. I will honor William Tipton's request and not forward links to my blog postings any more. However, I do have a suggestion for William Tipton. The next time if you just request to be taking off of a mailing list, just send an e-mail saying "Please take me off of your mailing list. Thank you." Sarcastic and hurtful words only add to the negativity that is all too abundant in this world now. Below is the content of William Tipton's e-mail that he sent to me today.


As a fellow Tipton "geneologist" I can certainly appreciate your interest in all things "Tipton." It should be noted, however, that we comprise a very large tree with some branches being so far removed one from the other that any two particular branches may have no closer a blood relationsip than if we randomly put a finger down on a name in the phone book and compared that blood relationship to our own. Such is the case with your branch of the Tipton tree and my branch of the same, large tree.

I would hope you're a considerate guy, so I have one kind request, please:
Remove my email address from your periodic Tipton Trails notice. It's of no interest to me and I've grown more-than-tired of receiving the same message from you, sir.

Like most of us, I've lived with spam only because I must. We Tiptons really have no business adding to the problem.

Thanks for not replying and for taking me off your email list.

-Wm. Tipton


nitewrit said...


Yes, perhaps a bit harsher than it needed to be. Maybe he get hit with a lot of stuff. It isn't hard to delete and you can have span filters and blocks on unwanted material. Yes, a simple please remove me would have been sufficient.


Ron said...

He was mean spirited. No need for that. However, I will stop forwarding my links to other Tiptons. He has a point, if they're interested they will look for it. Ironically, I only had his name because he had sent me an e-mail about my blog. Maybe my blogs weren't providing enough information for him. By his use of the parenthesis "genealogist" I suspect he didn't consider me a genealogist. Well, I am the expert genealogist on my family as you are on your family. During my genealogy research I have encountered snobs like him who can't see beyond their own selfsih needs and give nothing in return. Apparently he was frustrated for some reason and felt it necessary to strike out and hurt someone. Maybe he feels better now.


Hi - sorry to hear about your experience.

Funny thing happened to me too - I sent a contribution to the web-site called Smirking Chimp - and sent a composite e-mail recommending the site to friends of mine. Instead of this 'editor' thanking me for 'spreading the good word and the money I sent', he told me to remove me from my mailing list.

So, as Wayne would say, 'and so it goes'...some people are just so DENSE AND RUDE.

Dont' let it bother you; we all appreciate what you do, and I am not even REMOTELY CLOSE to being a Tipton. Regards, Diane

nitewrit said...


Rather than just summarily stop sending your emails to those others, why don't you email and ask if they would like to continue receiving them. If this is the only person who has complained, perhaps the others want the information.


Ron said...

Thanks to all of you who have expressed your support to me as a result of the rudeness of one of my Tipton Tales and Trails e-mail recipients. Who knows what other things are going on in the life of someone who feels the needs to inflict hurt on others they don't even know personally. It is heartening to know that my efforts are appreciated by many, if not all. Since 1994, when I began my genealogy research, I have traveled thousands of miles, spent way too much money, taken thousands of pictures, and spent countless hours researching my family history. My goal is to share the information I have discovered with other members of my extended family. Along the way I have encountered the occasional speed bump. That is what happened recently when I received the rude e-mail asking me to remove him from any further mailings of updates to my "Tipton Tales and Trails" website. I will take the advice of my friends Caroline, Diane, Robert and Larry. I will continue to share.

Anonymous said...


I agree with the other posters who encourage you to continue sending your Tipton Trails. I'd only add the suggestion of writing something at the bottom saying if they want to be removed, feel free to write and request. Some emails offer a link that you only have to click in order to be removed. Perhaps you could fashion one of those. I'm not sure how difficult that is to do.

As far as the "Wm. Tipton" email -- obviously this person is a perfect example behind why the colloquial term "prick" was invented. He easily could have asked to be removed from your list or easier yet just blocked you. Simple. But nooooo. For some reason he felt the need to get out the knife. Yes, feel true empathy for such a bitter and caustic person.

Unfortunately most of us only write or call when we have something to complain about. Likely there are many who receive your Tipton Trail missives and appreciate them but never write to say so. For example, I get email from companies all the time that I like to read but I never send them a note thanking them or saying how much I enjoy it. Stuff I don't want I block. Simple.

I think you said it best: "Sarcastic and hurtful words only add to the negativity that is all too abundant in this world now."

My advice, for what it's worth: never let other people determine much what you do. Whether they're for you or against you. But especially if they are against you. Only you are the final judge of what you do, and what is right.

Keep up the good work!

p.s. your music is always great

Ron said...

Thank you again for your kind and thoughtful comments. Your advice is well taken: never let other people determine much of what you do. Because of the number of favorable comments, most direct e-mails to me and not reflected on my blog, I decided to continue forwarding new posting links to those Tipton related e-mail addresses that I have accumulated. However, I am more careful now as I review each e-mail address before I send it. It is not my intention to bother anybody. Recently I saw a quote that expresses my feelings exactly:

"To rescue from oblivion the history of a large and honorable family is a praiseworthy achievement. Somebody must begin the work. It is to be hoped that someone will complete it."
Joseph Woodruff Bozeman, 1885

Anonymous said...

I'm sorry your feelings were hurt, Ron.

Maybe someone should explain to William that if he didn't want to receive email from you, he could've simply added your address to his spam folder/catcher thinga-ma-bob and problem would've been solved.

I guess some of us are still learning how to be good net-citizens, and others are falling short.

Ron said...


Thank you for your kind words. I admit that the venom of William's request did catch me off guard. I wonder what is the cause of all that anger?