Doggerel?

Subject: Doggerel?
From: StaffGuy <plicysci -at- FRII -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 12 Dec 1996 22:13:47 +0000


> Stephen Arrants wrote:

> > this list is turning into the
> > electronic equivalent of a mall courtyard.

> > My point (and I do have one, thank you, Ellen) is that the
> > list is serving so many different people with so many
> > different interests and

> My goodness, that's awful Steve. It is a public forum,
> however, and all are encouraged to participate. There is an
> option for private email, which will allow those who are more
> "selective" or perhaps, "discriminating," to avoid idle
> chatter? I've always felt that it was a place to freely
> exchange information and ideas. I'm curious if you are really
> capable of defining, or finding appropriate limits on
> discussion, and more importantly, why would you feel that is
> necessary? What are you afraid of?

> > Every mailing list has guidelines (or should)...probably
> > most importantly, what is and isn't acceptable to post to
> > the list.

> We've all agreed that TECHWR is for discussion of technical
> writing. That does seem a rather broad subject, however, and
> it has always attracted a diverse crowd with many levels of
> experience. If you are unable to cope with a range of opinion
> and issues, perhaps you should not venture out in public?

> > Every member of every mailing list has violated these
> > guidelines. Yup. Everyone.

> I wonder, frankly, if that is due to your own perception, or
> if the unwritten guidelines are too narrow? In an earlier
> post, you suggested that no rebuttal be allowed. That's a
> rather interesting suggestion...

> > And the list, being a community, has to regulate itself by
> > continually reviewing and changing guidelines, by enforcing
> > those....

> Communities must also be humane and understanding of
> diversity...no? There may be other values, in a community,
> such as discretion perhaps?

> > You are responsible for knowing and obeying those
> > guidelines, even if you've never read them.

> Yes, and there are those who will take great delight in
> pointing out the difficiencies of the new community members in
> an effort to establish some "status." The USA Nativists for
> example... Unfortunately, the guidelines change, and the
> community is expanding. The only guideline I'm willing to
> adhere to is "respect diversity," and "expect a range of
> behavior." It is called "tolerance." However, I don't
> "cotton" to bullies...

> > The first thing any new user should do, if he hasn't gotten
> > the guidelines when first signing on, is....

> I suppose that we all have differing opinions on what a newbie
> might do? Maybe even the newbie could have other needs?

> > ....to ASK the list. "Is it OK to post job openings here or
> > is there a better list for this?" "FRAME or PAGEMAKER? Or
> > am I coming in just after a month of discussing this?"

> > But when a member violates the guidelines...he needs to be
> > told that he violated the guidelines.

> Don't you think the newbies are smart enough to figure this,
> unwritten code, out themselves? Why do you, especially, need
> to point out anything?

> > Well, what's done is done, and I'm sure we all won't be
> > seeing that damned doggerel again.

> In your wildest dreams perhaps?

> > I think the list has grown too large and too diverse to be
> > effective....

> One reason the USA is so effective, not to be ethnocentric or
> nationalistic, is because it is a nation of immigrants.
> Diversity breeds progressiveness and invention. I'm not
> willing to limit myself to only certain ideas, or ways of
> thinking about those ideas.

> > I'm really not interested in the certification debate.
> > Others are. I'm more interested in....

> Of course, the uproar over your interests is deafening? Are
> you unable, or unwilling, to read selectively? Do you have to
> read the entire telephone directory when you try to find a
> particular number? I've been getting around 250 to 400
> messages a day, from listservers and email groups, for almost
> a decade. Do you believe I read every single message? If you
> choose to be selective, especially in a public forum, is it
> your choice Steve? Why do you demand the world submit to your
> tastes? Is it laziness?

> > I co-manage a mailing list with over 2800 members, and this
> > isn't as time-consuming or difficult as it sounds.

> So perhaps you have skills which could be applied....privately
> perhaps?

> I'm not willing to allow a "star chamber" to decide what I
> will read or discuss, with you, or a newbie. Do you think we
> are not smart enough to make our own decisions?

> > The list could also ask for subject area volunteers who
> > would answer questions...

> This method is used on a number of listservers, and it's a
> **very good idea!** There could be a "welcome wagon"
> committee who would be chosen by virtue of their insight and
> diplomacy.

> > But all this sounds a little too regimented.

> Who sounds regimented?

> > I don't know what the solution is.....

> Gee, at the beginning of your rant, you knew exactly what to
> do. So, Steve, what we've been watching, is you thinking
> about things? The whole world is watching Steve...have you
> forgotten?

> > ...but day by day we see more dross on the list. And it
> > ain't getting any better.

> Thanks for your exemplary posting. Note newbies, if possible,
> do your thinking off line...

> Wouldn't it be best if we just took responsibility for our own
> behavior? Wouldn't it be best if we trusted other members
> were smart enough to correct their own mistakes or adjust
> their behavior accordingly?

> With absolutely no remorse,
> Jim Talboy


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