Originally posted by: "*NUL:A"@SU-SCORE.ARPA (A voice of sanity in the wilderness)
Posted: Mon Mar 10 15:25:46 1986
Date-Received: Wed, 12-Mar-86 05:45:41 EST
Reply-To: "Don't reply, this has gone on long enough" <"*NUL:A"@SU-SCORE.ARPA>
Organization: The ARPA Internet
This is enough. The messages in question were sent to the
two individuals ("freak" and "turner") who took it upon
themselves to repeatedly and publicly harass perfectly innocent
individuals who happened to send a message to what certain
individuals perceived was the wrong list. They contained a
(justifiably) angry demand that these individuals cease and
desist from further trashing an already overworked list.
Some of us have to worry about such things as the cost of
line charges to deliver garbage messages of the form "you idiot,
you should have sent this to info-atari-loonies, not
info-atari-nerds", or in keeping a mailer at a mail hub afloat
enough so that it continues to reliably deliver messages which
are reasonably important. It's perhaps understandable that
spoiled brat hackers who have never had to worry about such
things fail to understand these considerations. However, it is
important that the word gets out. Sooner or later the large bulk
of these resources -- paid by the US taxpayer at great expense --
will no longer be freely given away.
In any case, the messages were sent to only those
individuals and not to the entire Atari list. Simple etiquette
would have dictated that any commentary or replies would not be
directed to the entire Atari list, which presumably would have no
interest whatsoever in such matters but which presumably would be
interested in seeing the list return to strictly Atari-based
The result was a reposting of the message to the entire list
along with various slanderous commentary. You can say almost
anything you want privately, but when something is posted in
public it becomes slander or libel. Imagen's corporate lawyers
would probably have had a fit if they saw Turner's message;
someday somebody will send a public netmail message like this to
a less tolerant person who would persue litigation against the
sender *and* his employer.
The following ground rules should make the use of this (or
of any other) mailing list much easier:
. never send a message that a totally irrelevant to the mailing
list's purpose to a mailing list. This especially includes
any expressions of irritation at another list member.
. never forward a message that is totally irrelevant to the
mailing list's purpose to a mailing list.
. when replying to a message on a mailing list, reply only to
the sender of the message unless the reply is of interest to
the entire mailing list.
. never insert the message being replied to in a reply,
especially in a message going to a mailing list. This serves
no purpose at all other than to add further clutter. The
context of the reply should be clear from *your* reply and
from various mailer functionalities such as Message-ID. Why
the Unix mailer has introduced the ancient long-discredited
ARPANET mail misfeature eludes any rational explanation.
. when replying to an earlier reply that violates the previous
rule, ABSOLUTELY DO NOT make matters worse by adding your own
violation. Multi-nested replies containing the entire
conversation from day 1 are useless.
Perhaps if these rules are followed there would be some
semblance of order on this list. The Amiga list doesn't appear
to have this problem.