Re: DNS: Can we do something about noise on this list

Re: DNS: Can we do something about noise on this list

From: David Keegel <djk§>
Date: Mon, 22 Jun 1998 11:40:18 +1000 (EST)
] I would like to initiate a _serious_ debate about ways in which this list
] can "moderate" itself without causing concern about "freedom of speech" or
] "censorship".
] I think that there is a critical need to ensure that this list sticks to
] the important topics at hand. I have no idea how the issue can be resolved,
] but there seems to be a consensus opinion that the work of this list is
] compromised by side issues repeatedly raised by individuals who clearly do
] not have a professional and cooperative approach to participation.
] My feeling is that there are important issues to debate on this list and
] that this list is crippled by posting from individuals that the majority of
] this list find vexatious or at least boring and irrelevant. The only reason
] why this situation is allowed to continue is that the will of the majority
] of list members is not heard.
] Is there a cooperative, non-"big brother" means of ensuring that the
] attention of the list is directed to debating and moving forward rather
] than endless noise? Can we achieve that level of cooperation?

I have an interesting suggestion along these lines, which involves
minimal change and (at least IMHO) to "big brother" involvement.
I don't know whether it would work, but I think it's worth a try.
If it doesn't we can always a new list or a moderated approach.

My suggestion is that if you see postings which are off-topic (and I'm
happy to leave that up to individuals' discretion or somebody else to
define) THEN DO NOT REPLY.  Especially where the author is repeating
something (s)he has already said.

In the real world, flames need three things to survive: heat, fuel and
air.  My suggestion is the equivalent of withholding air from off-topic
sparks, before they can grow into fully-fledged flames.

Every reply gives another chance for another off-topic counter-reply.
It also shows that you read the original posting, and took it seriously
enough to bother replying.  It also propagates the author's words to
people who may not have otherwise seen them (filtering).

There are a few people posting on this list who I think should not be
taken at all seriously.  I would like to metaphorically turn my back to
them.  The first level of this is not to reply to them.  The second level
(for those who wish to take it) is not to read their postings at all
(which makes the first level rather easier).

Some people on this list reply (with good intentions) to this rubbish
to correct mistakes.  This makes sense if
  (a) you care about educating the author, or
  (b) you think other people will take the author seriously

I think there are a few authors on this list where neither of these
apply.  If they don't understand the DNS, I don't care.  And I very
much doubt others take them seriously.

Anyone on the ti-ops-contact list will have recently found out what
can happen when people reply, rather than just holding their tongue.

I suggest that others who feel the way I do, join me in NOT REPLYING
to posts to the DNS list which are off topic, by people you don't take
seriously, who are repeating themselves.
 David Keegel <djk&#167;>  URL:
Cybersource P/L: Unix Systems Administration and TCP/IP network management
Received on Mon Jun 22 1998 - 12:11:45 UTC

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