RE: ADMIN: Civility and content

Subject: RE: ADMIN: Civility and content
From: Tom Murrell <trmurrell -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 10 Jul 2003 04:46:29 -0700 (PDT)

Regarding a posting limit and issues of Civility & Content

I don't wish to support the notion of a posting limit, as I
don't think that addresses the problem; it addresses only a symptom.
One could still reply off-list to as many posts as one wants; a
posting rule could only be applied to on-list responses and
queries. Yes, the answer won't get into the archives, and that
could be a problem for some. Still, since so many of the same
questions get asked and answered repeatedly on the list, I doubt
that the archives will suffer from a lack of information in it.

The real problem is civility, or a lack thereof. I know there are
some who think I am as guilty as anyone of being uncivil. While I
personally question that assessment, I have to acknowledge that
others feel I am less than civil at all times. For that I apologize
and promise to do better going forward. I recommend that everyone
else on the list take a similar pledge, at least to oneself (you
need not make a public declaration <g>).

The problem that can be addressed is 'ad hominem' attacks and ripostes.
Make ad hominem attacks carry the same penalty as the unauthorized
posting of advertisements on the list. Immediate suspension of
posting privileges and a fine and apology required for reinstatement.
This would apply to the first offense only. A second offense by
the same person should result in permanent removal of the offender
from the list.

Eric and Deb might want to create a committee to review any complaints,
make a determination and recommend to them what, if any, penalties
should be imposed.

Throughout history, ostracism has been one of the most powerful
penalties a community could exert on its members. Ostracism has been
used for any variety of offenses, real and imagined. It might be a good
idea to try it on some standard of civility, and I recommend it be used
to eliminate the ad hominem attack. Posting limits 'punish' everyone
for the actions of a few. Personally, I've always thought punishing
everyone was a stupid way to deal with a problem of just a few, but
maybe that's just me. I happen to believe in personal responsibility
for one's actions rather than collective responsibility for the actions
of a few.

Tom Murrell
--Don't argue with an idiot. People watching may not be able to tell the difference. (Anonymous)--
@ mailto:trmurrell -at- yahoo -dot- com
@ Last Updated 05/26/2003

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RE: ADMIN: Civility and content: From: Jeff Hanvey

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