Saturday, May 22, 2010

public service message




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At 10:50 PM, Blogger Kea said...

LOL, OK. One just can't be sure if they really are a troll ... or an idiot.

At 7:42 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, so I'm a troll now? There's nothing I posted yesterday which was half as nasty as what you dish out on a regular basis. It seems pretty hypocritical to me, to constantly hurl accusations of incompetence and sexism against people who can't give their side of the story, and then turn around and act all traumatized over one person who questions if your resume is really as incredible as you insist.

You can still remain anonymous "Mrs. PhD".. and tell us how many pubs you've had in top journals... how many grants you've received... how many awards you've gotten...

But I guarantee the answer will be a pile of excuses, involving accusations of unfairness that no one will be able to verify.

If I'm a "troll", you're trolling the whole academic profession.

At 10:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

At the risk of having my head bitten off, if I may intervene...

Dear Anon 7:42, I think you probably have a point regarding Ms.PhD's qualification or parts thereof, and thanks for the bluntness.


1) It's MsPhD's life and she can do whatever she wants with it, and that includes not exploring alternative careers, choosing to rationalize her choices, and then whine to the world about it

2) This is MsPhD's blog and she can write whatever she wants, none of us have to read/participate if we don't want to.

3) I do find the tone quite abrasive, however, but, I do keep reading on. And so do you. And that tells something us, and about people in general -- like everyone wanting to take a look at a car crash. People like drama. Don't pretend you're above it

4) I think having a blog like MsPhD's is important because it is so extreme. It enables people to post their unadulterated, angry/emotional responses.
We don't have to be politically correct or polite all the time. It's exhausting and doesn't let you grow. I generally think that things that make one's skin cringe are the ones worth exploring (such as almost getting a stroke after one of MsPhD's more heated comments), if for no other reason but to thicken one's skin

Bottom line: MsPhD may be a whiner and a hypocrite, but it's her prerogative to be whatever she wants on her blog

At 11:21 AM, Blogger Science Gal said...

Haven't been commenting lately, but I do read the comments and sometimes I wonder if it's REALLY a troll OR a regular reader who went "anon" to spout their foolishness! The latter I think is cowardly.

At 4:01 PM, Blogger Kea said...

Sorry, can't help myself ... perhaps anon should take a more distant and intellectual view of such activities. Given that we do not know who YFS is, she nonetheless represents a well researched and well documented underclass of down trodden women who are excluded from science, latish along the pipeline. Now, anon can yell abuse for as long as he likes, but his determination to defend academia without acknowledging the known facts says a lot more about HIM/HER than it does about YFS and her associates.

At 5:35 PM, Blogger post-doc said...

Given that I've been attracted trolls lately as well, I've decided to pretend it's part of the end-of-semester stress that causes a lot of unhappiness that sometimes spews from the unfortunate souls that don't have suitable outlets. I very much hope you're not taking it personally and that you're able to respond by being quite happy with your life in general.

At 9:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon 7:42,

I am glad you had the courage to speak out the honest truth, at the risk of getting your head bitten off.

I have been a reader of this blog for the past few months, although I have never commented before. To me this blog has been a fascinating study. It is amazing how paranoid and hypocritical, deluded MsPhD is; more amazing is how intolerant she is of anyone who happens to disagree with her own paranoid notions even one tiny bit. (Just as an example, read her replies to geekmoomyprof in the last few posts.)

At 11:09 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You think this blog is 'extreme'?? what sheltered cave have you been living in...?

At 1:33 PM, Anonymous outlaw josey wales said...

MsPhD wishes the world was different than it is in reality. The PhD/post doc system is largely a scam. She has nothing to do with causing that.

It is hard to assess the extent to which her failure to secure the position she wants is due to the inequities of the system, or to her personal/professional failings.

MsPhD states that "I would describe myself as good at all of those things except the 'likeability' part and the 'whom you know' part."

Professional success is often built on at least three things in our control: 1) likeability, 2) connections, 3) actual knowledge/competence. 1 and 2 are often linked. MsPhD admits that she lacks 2 of these things, and we have no factual basis to assess #3.

Academia and industry are not meritocracies, and are not likely to be in the foreseeable future. It is not scientific to ignore reality.

At 1:36 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is anon 7:42 again.. To some of the responses: I'm not a regular on this blog, I don't troll blogs, nor do I have a blog of my own. I did look through the archives and it was clear it was pretty much uniformly the same stuff, maybe with a gradual decline in her emotional state over time.

To Kea: The "abuse" I'm yelling is nothing compared to the abuse she yells routinely to all those around her. And I haven't defended academia.

All I'm saying is that it is hypocritical for her to hurl her invective at those around her, making constant accusations of unfairness and incompetence, but being entirely unwilling to admit the possibility having substantial flaws of her own, either in her job credentials or her behavior towards others. She truly believes she is a victimized genius.

At 2:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

@Anon 11:09 PM

The Cave of Wonders

At 3:14 PM, Blogger geekmommyprof said...

Anon @9:05PM,

Thanks for being chivalrous. :)
Posting comments on YFS blog is not for the faint of heart.
But every time my head gets "bitten off", as someone said above, I grow two new ones, so that helps.

Except that I now spend all my money on hats. :)

At 7:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why is YFS pursuing a career in science if she hates it so much? That's what I can't get, but perhaps it would not matter what career she was pursuing - perhaps it is her personality (and yes, I know it is her blog). Or perhaps she would be better suited in a different profession. I've been in the business for 30 years and most days (not every day, but most days) when I come to work I am so very, very grateful to be doing science (I am a tenured, full professor, and female). I am privileged and I know it.

At 7:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You people might be interested in the following post. Here's the link. The title tells all


At 11:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a new blog on the PhD scam thing. It's actually a pretty funny read. Give it a look.

You have to type the http part in before the name for it to work in some browsers.

At 12:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Academia and industry are not meritocracies, and are not likely to be in the foreseeable future.

Exactly! At least in academia, once you have reached a certain stage -- say, a tenure-track job -- you don't have a boss. Even if you have a tt job, you still need to have connections and be likable to get tenure. In the industry, this is even worse. In most companies that I know of, you regularly have to kiss the boss's ass to get ahead or, these days, just to not get laid off.

It is foolish to believe academia to be this idealistic meritocracy, and then be bitter when you find out this is not true.

At 8:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This discussion would be quite funny if it were not so sad. Those who have academic positions think that MsPhD is a drama queen and those that don't tend to agree with her. It is quite incredible to me that assistant professors would spend so much time attacking a lowly postdoc and calling her paranoid, hypocritical, deluded... don't you people have better things to do??? If you do not like her blog then don't read it. It is really quite simple.

I might not always agree with MsPhD and her writing does rub me the wrong way at times, but I believe her experience is real. While I have been very lucky so far and had really supportive advisers, I have seen bad things happen to other grad students/postdocs and have seen careers of some very bright people destroyed (both men and women). The problem is that one person (your advisor) holds so much power over your career that when things go wrong for whatever reason it might extremely difficult to set them right and recovering your career might be impossible.

MsPhD, hang in there and do not stop writing. Your voice is important.

At 7:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is quite incredible to me that assistant professors would spend so much time attacking a lowly postdoc and calling her paranoid, hypocritical, deluded... don't you people have better things to do??? If you do not like her blog then don't read it.

Ok. I am one of those anons who thinks MsPhD is a drama queen. I do not have a tenure track position, but I do have what I consider a decent industry job. I do not publish, and I do not get to use all my bench training, but the expertise sometimes helps. So MsPhd would consider me a loser, and consider my PhD a waste of training. Which I don't; I consider myself lucky to have a job, and I do not think my job is waste of my precious training. (In fact, I even happen to make more money than the average tenure track biology professor. :-) )

The reason I read and comment on this blog is because in my years of grad school and postdoc-ing, I have seen too many people like MsPhD. People who are so deluded that they believe the sole destiny of a person with a PhD is to have a tenure track job. These are the people who on the one hand would sneer upon decent industry jobs like mine; on the other hand, they would spend years and years as postdocs, waiting to get on the tenure track.

And this is what seems to me to be such a gigantic waste of talent; so many of these people are so talented; if they just decided to do something else, they could do so much! With their talents, they could do so well in business, in management, in industry, many other places. Yet they just choose not to, due to what to me seems to be stupidity and false pride.

In the past, I have tried to convince many such people to give up hopes of the tenure track and get an industry job. I have succeeded with some, and failed with others. I guess with MsPhd, I fail. This is my last comment on this blog.

At 7:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon 7:17pm, I am anon from 8:05. In principle, I agree with you. I agree that non-academic jobs are not a waste of training and there are actually lot of interesting and challenging positions at private companies as well as in the government labs. Interestingly, depending on your specialization finding a job in industry might not be easy either.

The problem I have is when people call MsPhD names. You do not know her and her full story, what you see are the snippets she posts on the blog. We do not know how hard she tried to find a job in and outside of academia and what her specific circumstances are. And, calling somebody deluded and paranoid will not make them listen to you and accept your point of view no matter how valid it is, it will just offend them.

At 3:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anon7;17 - coming onto someone's blog purely to call the author deluded and paranoid and other things, IS being a troll. MsPhD writes her blog for an open audience, not aimed at any one person in particular. Addressing insults to her directly (which is what people who come onto her blog are doing) IS being a troll. If you are offended by her views, feel free to skip over the blog rather than coming back to it again and again.

that said, giving up one's hopes and dreams to settle for something which you really really don't want (initially) may be the best thing that ever could happen for some people, such as yourself perhaps and many people you successfully convinced to do the same. If it works for them, and you are truly happy, then great. There is a lot to be said for letting go and moving on and being open to new experiences.

But not everyone can give up their dreams and move on. the world would not have come this far if everyone gave up their dreams and settled rather than persisting despite overwhelming odds and frustration. The lightbulb would not have been invented, for example. And it is only normal to give voice to longstanding and deep seated frustration, which is what this blog does a lot of the time. what's wrong with that? You don't have to read this or any blog if you don't like what you read.


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