Removing myself from Google Groups

Hi folks,

Those who know me know that I, like most people, did some silly adolescent screaming and kicking on USENET.

Specifically, All This Shit.

I want it removed because it makes me look silly, and I didn’t believe people when they said potential employers might look at one day… ahh, youth.

Now, Google’s got this form to remove, but I need message IDs.


I need to scrape Google for every single message ID where I’m the author. Any tips where I start? Google API? Anything I can cobble together on my PC with C# (my cobbling language of choice these days)?

From there, I can figure out which ones can be autoremoved, and which ones I’ll have to send 5000 message IDs to Google and tell them to remove.

If I wasn’t a programmer, I’d think it’d be easier to make a fucking time machine, go back in time, and punch myself until I didn’t use my real name to post stupid rants on the internet.

I thought about that once, then ran into the same issue and decided not to bother. Also, aren’t there other Usenet archives besides Google?

I put a dumb picture of myself up on a website or two and it ended up on the first page of Google Pictures when you search for my name. Thankfully, it appears to be gone.

I read there’s a service where you can pay people to work on scrubbing the internet of your young foolishness. Im not saying you should do that but it will be a problem for people once they graduate from college and all their college antics are on Facebook and Google for the world to see.

I know of only one piece of my own youthful Interfolly, and fortunately you need to specify a pretty uncommon word (plus my real name) to google it up. I still cringe to think of it though.

“Larry Lard” of course has always been knowing and world-weary…

I think you’re going about this the wrong way. What you should do is go post MORE messages on the Usernet in all the catagories that pertain to the job you are going for, so you sound like some enlightened master. In fact, you should create a fake account under an assumed alias and ask the most complex question you can think of an answer to, and then use your real name to answer the question in detail.

Obviously there’s some holes there, but I’d do it.

Good idea Kevin,

I used to worry about my QT3 postings being under my real name until I realized that nobody is going to read through thousands of postings just to find a few incidents of me saying something nutty. If I go into a job hunting mode I’ll just put in a couple week runup of making bland but professional sounding QT3 postings to obscure my older stuff.

Yeah, don’t sweat it. Bosses don’t google your name to find out what you do online. It doesn’t happen. No body is afraid of that. No one. :)

In that case…

Tim Elhajj Tim Elhajj Tim Elhajj Tim Elhajj Tim Elhajj
T Elhajj T Elhajj T Elhajj T Elhajj T Elhajj
Bull Bull Bull Bull Bull
Steve Canyon Steve Canyon Steve Canyon Steve Canyon Steve Canyon

Well, I’ve started hacking at. I’ve decided to learn something, so I’m doing it in Ruby. Looks fun so far.

First thing I learned is that the Google API doesn’t work for Google Groups.

Ok, so now I’m webscraping. So far it’s string concatenation, and an HTTP get, and I’m digging Ruby, all 26 lines that I’ve written so far.

Well, I got it working, and the Google decided that I was acting too much like a bot designed to scrape content from Google, and starting to ignore my automated requests.

I suppose that means I’m doing it right.

Maybe an arbitrary delay between requests of between 5 and 10 seconds? Set it up, leave it on overnight.

Hehehe. if you search for “steve canyon” qt3 in google, the top result is this thread. :-)