Re: What kinds of exchanges???

Lois Shawver (
Sat, 29 Jun 1996 15:37:42 -0700 (PDT)

On Sat, 29 Jun 1996, James Mancuso wrote:

> It would seem, then, that anyone who participates in this net
> should expect that those of us who already are participating will expect
> that other participants will take it for granted that we are well
> acquainted with [or becomeing well acquainted with] this foundational set
> of ideas.
> Thus, I am not particularly sympathetic to the suggestions that
> we need to give much attention to someone who comes on to the net and
> begins to proseletyze without having done his/her homework regarding the
> foundational knowledge.

If you really want the list to work this way, then I think you need to
set it up differently. Lots of people set up lists for special interest
groups, but you have to toss out people that don't have these interests.
It has to be included up front how the list discussion is going to
limited. I believe in the legitimacy of such an approach, but it has its
disadvantages as well as its advantages.

You can imagine the advantages (I can tell from your post). let me
remind you of some of the disadvantages, that were perhaps behind the
reasoning that resulted in such an open list that would have allowed
posters to harass you before you were willing to elmiinate them from the

Tightly controlled lists have a much harder time gathering new audiences
who are not already convinced. This results in a certain insulation from
the zeitgeist and alternative ways of thinking. And this, in turn,
insulates the particpants from dealing with certain criticisms or (even
mistaken) misgivings people have when they first encounter pcp.

I think either way is perfectly legitimate, but that the list here is
trying to do both without defining what your list limits on subject are,
results, it seems to me, in the worst of either possible world. As
you have set it up, it is perfectly legitimate for people here to talk
about their systems that they think are better than "pcp". This is the
convention all over the net. Criticizing people who do it, when you have
set it up so it will work this way, just adds to the mood of provocation,
though, and makes it less satisfying for you than if you just waited out
each flood of "different kind of people" making their pitch for you to
abandon pct for their particular kind of system.

So, I think, you and the people who set up this list should consider
setting up the rules differently. Alternatively, we need to think as a
group (because then the list belongs to all of US) how to conduct
ourselves on the list to make it satisfying for all of US.

..Lois Shawver