LIST options change

Subject: LIST options change
From: Kim Ballard <ballardk -at- MACE -dot- CC -dot- PURDUE -dot- EDU>
Date: Mon, 14 Feb 1994 14:09:03 EST

The Technical Writing List has truly taught me a lot, and I probably
should have said thanks to Eric much earlier.

I hate now to say "Oh, no" in response to something Eric has done,
because he does so much right and for tons of people. BUT, geez, I
don't like the idea of setting Techwr-L up so that messages
automatically go back to the original poster instead of the list.
Here's why

1. I will wonder what I'm missing.

2. I think different notions of what's appropriate for public
posting and what's for private posting will mean that
some valuable resources will get lost.

3. I think this move actually makes Techwr-l less user
friendly and just downright less friendly. In addition to
interjection an official hierarchy of 'public' vs 'private' types of
messages (which has not been emphasized on this list before), this move
will make Techwr-l different from most lists (as far as I
know). 'Different' isn't necessarily worse, but in this case I
think it will be. Although I like Ken's posts nearly all the time, I
have to disagree with his growing dog analogy. This list has
one age, but individuals coming to it bring their own experiences with
lists and so their own network ages (so to speak). Seems to me the
logic behind Ken's analogy is that the list members all have the same
experience level with Techwr-l, because he focuses on the list's age
and not the experiences of the individuals subscribed. Those not used
to or in tuned with the difference in Techwr-l are likely to be
novices and folks who don't always pay attention to details (Oh, yea.
Now I'm responding to a Techwr-l post. I better do X). Even if the
welcome message will explain all this, I think new folks may miss it
because it doesn't meet their expectations and old folks like me may
simply forget.

4. Finally, yes a number of misdirected messages have been on
this list, but other than aggravation, I question how much
real time is lost in deleting those messages. It seems one of
the prices I pay for all the lists I read.

Having said all this, please note that I am sending this to the list
address rather than just to Eric. I assumed that this post is worth
the reading time of others, but I've several reservations already, and
I'm betting others will feel similarly reserved about sending posts to
the list address because they (as do I) don't want to bother people.

I'd vote to return the distribution options to their prior setting and
send personal notes (that is anyone of us, not just Eric) to those who
seem to breach netiquette or make errors.
Kim Ballard
Purdue University
ballardk -at- mace -dot- cc -dot- purdue -dot- edu

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