RE: ADMIN: Don't start down this road

Subject: RE: ADMIN: Don't start down this road
From: Michael Bryans <Michael -dot- Bryans -at- hummingbird -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 6 Feb 2003 10:32:16 -0500

Eric Ray,

I do not agree with your remarks that Thomas Eagles exhibited racism or
xenophobia in his posting within the [RE: The Lone Writer] thread January
27. These are serious allegations. The post does not convey belief in the
superiority of one race over another, nor does it accent in any way,
differences between races. There is no antagonism against the country
mentioned. There is frustration about exporting jobs. There is no hatred
or fear of foreigners.

Discussion about the export of jobs to lower-paying markets over the last
few years is valid. For example, free trade agreements have had major
effects on various sectors of the Canadian economy. Tom has pointed out
that such exports are starting to have an effect on the (North American)
tech-sector, something that we haven't seen in the past.

IMO, your response to Tom's post is over-reactive, and unreasonable.
Limiting certain discussions that might inflame the sensibilities of
subscribers is fair enough. However, your accusation goes beyond that, and
effectively is a personal slap in the face.

Obviously, there are list subscribers from other countries. We all know
there are sometimes tensions between nations, as well as within/between job
markets. You reinforce your argument with a reminder that people benefiting
from the export of North American jobs are trying to feed their families.
That is not relevant to Tom's post. I don't think he was trying to deny
anyone that basic need.

Perhaps, the post hit you at the wrong time or pressed a button. This is
not reason to censure someone in front of an international audience.
Despite this, I am confidant that Techwr-l is committed to promoting
discussion of topics that affect technical communicators without regard to
national borders, or the constraints of fickle political correctness.

I appreciate your administration and hosting of this list. I also
appreciate that such a role entails walking a fine line in keeping posts
(more or less) on track. No reasonable subscriber wants flame wars to get
started and get out of hand. I believe that your good intention is to keep
the list from descending into some sort of online hell. Perhaps you should
use a little more discretion before accusing posters of xenophobia and

Michael Bryans


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