Photographer James Rhodes Thinks It’s Ok to Threaten People With Violence on the Internet
I was deeply troubled by comments made in a Flickr forum that I admin by Photographer James Rhodes. His Flickr account is here where he goes by thevikingjames. He’s on Facebook here. For some reason Rhodes seems to blame me for internet harassment that he feels he’s suffered on the internet for admining an uncensored group on Flickr. He claims to have stalked me at the Dream Machines Show this past year in Half Moon Bay and has written that I didn’t know how close I came to being mugged by him at that event.
Note. This is someone that I’ve never met in life and had no signficant interaction with on the internet prior to him making these sorts of threats. He’s made threats against other people in this internet forum as well. I’m not going to get into the details of this specifically, other than to say that I found it offensive that he’d suggest that he was stalking me at a public photographer event. And that he’d threaten physical violence against people over differences in photography in an internet forum. I’ve posted a few posts of his below so that for the record (and Google) they can be associated with his name.
I did give James an opportunity to try and de-escalate this situation prior to blogging about his behavior on the internet. When somebody threatens people physically however that is totally inappropriate. When somebody claims to have stalked me and almost mugged me I take it personally. Whatever qualms James may have about an internet forum, threatening violence is not the answer. Below are the quotes attributed to him. I’m happy to give him ample space in this same blog post to justify his position or provide a response to why he felt it necessary to use these words.
“Must be the Sicilian in me, just can’t let things go…. still have yet to pay a visit to EA, and TH doesn’t know how close he came at the dream machines event at that airport on the coast…. and TH never really did anything… I just wanted to make an example of him… good thing I realized that he never said or did anything… I would have felt horrible afterwords….”
well to be clear I never threatened you, I just watched you from a distance. You never knew I was there, and you would have never know why someone would have “mugged” you in the parking lot…..it would have all been a strange coincidence…
Here’s another threat he made against another member of the same forum:
“I’m with you Hyp. just begging for this piece of shit to dig his hole deeper. Fuck in South Africa, I bet I could hire someone to do whatever I want to his family for less than $5k US. Its amazing what can happen if you have enough money, I don’t even have to see or meet the people who do it. That will be pretty hard to prosecute….”
Yea you never claimed to be anything, because thats exactly right , you are nothing, and never will be for that matter. You hate on people who live the life you wish you had but can never afford. You are honestly the most pathetic person I have ever met, and I have met alot. The simple fact of the matter is you don’t know what I am capable of, and you think you are safe and secure in South Africa, but believe me one day you will see my face. I know where you work, and I don’t think it would be to hard to find out where you live, and who lives with you. Don’t think I’m above bringing this to your loved ones, I will make you regret every fucking word you write, with interest.
I’ve been threatened with violence on the internet in the past and it’s not very much fun. I find it deplorable when people seem so willing to suggest violence and very personal when it’s directed at me. Hopefully people who engage with James in the future will have the benefit of reading his words here themselves to gain insight into his character.
I really truly honestly wish I did not feel the need to blog this post right now. But I’m very upset over the threats of violence suggested by James.
Update: More from James: “Well Tommy, I am “warning” you that you are a over-bloated douchebag ego maniac, and the next time I see you, wether it be late at night, walking to your car, in public on one of your photowalks, or even outside your house. I’m warning you that you are going to need a good set of dentures when I’m done with you.”
If you piss me off I will bring reality to your doorstep, see its what men used to do before we had web anonymity to hide behind. You say shit about me I feed you my fist, very simple….
Update #2: Although I don’t normally censor comments on my site, I just chose to delete some comments on both my blog and Flickr photostreams where James was referencing my daughters by name who are 5 and 6 years old. In one reference he talked about looking up my 5 year old daughter’s dress. While James may be the type of person that is full of hatred, I find it deplorable that he would extend his threats of violence towards me by referencing my children by name in posts about them, innocent parties and young children to make it worse. Further, the perverted remark he made about looking up my daughter’s dress paints the picture of a truly troubled individual who would choose to sexualize someone’s child as a way of spewing hatred out against them.