Re: What may new subscribers post?

Subject: Re: What may new subscribers post?
From: Matthew Stern <MAStern -at- PLATSOFT -dot- COM>
Date: Mon, 23 Sep 1996 10:06:00 -0700

I sympathize and agree with Melissa Hunter-Kilmer:

>In light of the recent brouhaha on techwr-l, let us consider the question of
>what is appropriate for new subscribers to post.
>Techwr-l is not an exclusive club. Each of us may post. We frequently
>disagree, and that's perfectly fine. But saying "You're wrong -- and you're
>new, so put a sock in it" is completely uncalled for.

I am also a new subscriber, and I'm surprised by all the flaming that's
going on here. In just the first week or two I've been here, I've seen
some pretty heated arguments over subjects as diverse as college
degrees, profanity in e-mail, and even splitting infinitives. We as
writers feel passionately about the language and our profession, so it's
natural that we can argue strongly over these issues. While arguing is
acceptable (and can be fun to participate in), attacking each other is

Aren't we supposed to be professional *communicators*? Doesn't
communication involve *listening* to other people's points of view, and
*respecting* others even if we don't agree with them? Doesn't
communication involve *expressing* our views effectively and clearly
without resorting to dirty, unfair, and ineffective tactics like insults
and personal attacks? Doesn't communication involve *including* anyone
who wants to participate, including those of us who have just joined?

Not only is TECHWR-L our forum, it shows others what our profession is
about and what technical writers can be like. So, let's set a good
example. Turn off the flame throwers and let's communicate like

Thanks for letting me put in my US$0.02.

Matthew Stern
Sr. Technical Writer
Platinum Software Corporation
mastern -at- platsoft -dot- com

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