[eDebate] a Slightly More Strongly Worded Suggestion About Forum Choice

Mariam Willis razianwillis
Tue Apr 15 22:28:37 CDT 2008

It's pretty easy to filter your edebate messages into a separate email folder to view at your convenience.  It's pretty darn simple to read the subject line and mark and delete messages that are not of interest to you and have only messages of interest remaining.  Takes approximately 2.5 seconds.  Seems to solve the personal problem and leaves dialog open.

Many people, who are not participating in the edebate discussion, ARE reading and discussing these posts in other venues at great value to every one involved.

Mariam Razian Willis
Appalachian State University
Co Director of Debate
828-262-7527 (office)

> Date: Tue, 15 Apr 2008 17:48:04 -0700
> From: antonucci23 at yahoo.com
> To: edebate at ndtceda.com
> Subject: [eDebate] a Slightly More Strongly Worded Suggestion About Forum	Choice
> Sorry to intrude.
> You should collectively conduct these Big Picture
> Discussions on a bulletin board.
> Two currently exist - Phil Kerpen maintains a college
> section of his high school site and Matt Stannard
> appears to host a college debate bulletin board:
> http://debatecooperative.net/
> I know that forum choice seems insignificant when
> compared with the Very Large Issues under Serious
> Discussion, but...
> Some large percentage (let's say 23.4%) of these posts
> contain caveats and metacomplaints such as "sorry for
> posting" - "I'll never post again" - "how dare you
> post" - "I postishly post the post Malkovich
> Malkovich" - "why must you post so much" - "I can only
> read 20 words at a time, you ****er" - et cetera.
> I attribute some small degree of overwriting to the
> feeling that Etiquette Demands That Every Post Must Be
> Tagged As My Last Post Ever.
> I attribute some of the absence of clash in these
> discussions to the instinct to write Massive Treatises
> instead of conducting conversations.  People lose the
> thread.
> Efforts to limit post counts partially stem from the
> common perception that overposting intrudes on the
> inboxes of subscribers - right?
> Firsthand, I hear a fair amount of generalized
> irritation and anxiety whenever the listserv
> predictably "blows up" post-NDT - in a number of
> different debate quarters.
> If you ported the discussion into a place where people
> could read or not read, as per their desire, and post
> to their heart's content, they'd all still read, but a
> significant undercurrent of crankiness and anxiety and
> awkward self-consciousness and Last Post Ever Folks
> grandstanding might disappear.
> Personally, I would really prefer to just scroll
> through discussions that I can read as continuous
> blocks of text.  Perhaps that's because I need aids to
> cognitive processing because I'm an idiot, or because
> I'm a competitor for Laziest Ever, but there it is.
> I know there's a stigma attached to a format that many
> of you associate with Phil's high school site, but
> honestly - whatever.  Crawl out of your very small
> nerd box...into a slightly larger nerd box.  Mailbox
> bombing is turning off possible listeners and creating
> unnecessary escalatory pressures in these discussions.
>  C'mon.  It's not 1998.
> I'm personally not that invested in either outcome,
> but you should collectively stop griping about The
> Huge and Irritating Volume of Posts That We Receive
> when you can collectively opt for a less intrusive
> system. 
> Pre-empts:
> 1. I'm not ripping on your long post, Mr./Ms. Long
> Poster. Many of these long posts are really
> illuminating; the longest anonymous post from
> XYdebater is a genuinely great essay by any standard
> of writing.
> I'm just dismissing the associated eyerolling and
> moaning.
> 2. Yes, I know they can just delete, but it still
> appears to irritate the stuffing out of lots of
> people, OK?
> 3. Attempts to attribute hidden political or elitist
> motivations to this technical suggestion will be met
> with more strongly worded suggestions.
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