My most widely distributed work

Here’s an unofficial list of the things I’ve written or co-written that have probably had the widest audiences.

I might have labeled this as a list of the things I’m best known for, except that the widest-distribution pieces mostly haven’t had my name attached.

I’m only guessing that these are the things that have had the widest distribution, but it seems likely. I suspect that each of these items has been seen by thousands or tens of thousands of people.

Joan Aiken article, plagiarized by the Telegraph
I wrote a Strange Horizons review of some of the short fiction of Joan Aiken (one of my favorite authors) in 2001. In 2004, Aiken died. The Telegraph ran an obituary which quoted and paraphrased extensively from my piece, without giving me any credit.
I wrote to them and asked them to credit me. I doubt that they ever did; they certainly never replied to my request.
“Stories we’ve seen too often” list, copied by Harper’s
The Strange Horizons fiction department had a list of “stories we’ve seen too often,” which I wrote a fair bit of, though not all of. Harper’s reprinted that list (with some changes) in their magazine, without asking for permission. They gave the name of the magazine, but not the URL. I was pretty unhappy about it.
Google developer docs style guide
In 2005, I created Google’s developer documentation style guide. In 2017, I made it available to the general public. By that time, I wasn’t the sole author of it—multiple other editors and writers had written various parts of it—and over subsequent years, even less of it was written by me. But as of 2023, when Google laid me off, there were still sentences in it that I had written, and pages that I had co-written.
Hartman’s Law
I wrote Hartman's Law of Prescriptivist Retaliation in 1999 as a joke-in-passing, but it got some traction, and is now even cited in Wikipedia, along with other formulations of the same idea/joke by other people.

I’ve also written bits of various Wikipedia pages that have probably seen a lot of traffic, but I don’t think I’ve ever written more than about a paragraph worth of text on any single Wikipedia page, so I’m not counting those for the purposes of this page.