List issues / moderation / new maintainer (was Re: obnoxious header)

From: J. Maynard Gelinas <>
Date: Sun Apr 12 22:09:31 1998

> From: Sam Ismail <>
> Subject: Re: Asshole
> Just to let everyone know, if I was the moderator here, these types of
> constant, pointless messages would have been obliterated from the get-go.
> Everyone who was scared to let me moderate can thank themselves now for
> Enrico's abuse of the list.
> On Sun, 12 Apr 1998, Enrico Tedeschi wrote:
> > Thank you for your comments. There is always something to learn from anybody

       [rant on]

           Oh come on, Sam. The only reason Enrico hasn't been tossed
       is because Bill is too busy to deal, we can't fault him for
       that. However, we _really_ could use a list maintainer who has
       the time to actually read the list and toss the occasional
       kook. My biggest issue with you becoming list maintainer is
       that you regularly attempt to control content by sending public
       flames. I _know_ you get frustrated when folks discuss things
       that you find off topic, I even agree _in spirit_ with your
       stated goals. But your interpretation of what's signal and
       what's noise, and how to deal with the noisier folks, leaves me
       unable to support you as list maintainer. This is called 'list
       politics' and is something which we must deal with. It's
       _annoying_, has nothing to do with classic computers, and
       because of that is something we'd all like to just forget.

           Unfortunately, the last big flame war nearly blew this list
       apart. I _really_ don't want to see that happen because there
       is so much useful stuff going on here that I would consider it
       a big loss if the list simply died from this garbage. My
       father is seriously ill, so I can't handle the job... and I
       don't think the majority of the people here want me in the
       seat, anyway. But it's clear that a large number of people
       here don't want you in that seat either.

          If the list votes - in majority - to make you list
       maintainer, I'll shut up. Until then we (as a list) have some
       unresolved issues of a _practical_ matter which need to be
       hashed out, publicly; and I think we should _ALL_ start
       talking it over. Is the list going to move? What software do
       we want to run? do we wish per post moderation to keep the
       content on topic, or can we trust the members to post using
       informal 'judgment' calls?

          It's currently running Tasos Kastonsis's (sp? - I used to
       work with the guy, _real_ nice guy BTW!) Listproc package.
       Both of these are capable packages, I'd vote for either
       majordomo or listproc on this 'cause I don't want to lose
       digest capability. I'd _like_ to keep the list right where it
       is, but if Bill doesn't want to give list maintainance
       authority to a complete stranger (and why should we blame him
       for that?) then we may have to consider finding a new server
       and host.domain address. And finally, even though Enrico has
       abused the list, and even though we seem to have regular flame
       wars now and then over what's 'on topic' and what's 'off
       topic', I think we're still _much_ better off using 'judgment
       calls' and 'personal censorship' rather than having a list
       moderator check posts before making them public.

          The last flame war was _different_ from what we're
       experiencing with Enrico, he just needs to be kicked off the
       list (IMHO). But the last one showed that we need to resolve
       inherent problems with list maintenance... someone needs to
       take on these responsibilities, I agree. I just want it to
       come to public vote and I want the list to remain free enough
       for Tim Hotze to post an occasional off topic thing without a
       public flame going into all our mailboxes, or a list moderator
       cutting it out because he/she finds the discussion out of

          Finally, Sam, please don't take this as a hostile flame.
       You often post knowledgeable and helpful materials. I
       apologized to you personally, and on the list, because of how
       helpful you've been both to me and others. It would have been
       a real shame to see you go (and at the time you hadn't posted
       for a couple of days so I seriously thought you might leave),
       and I didn't want to be in any way responsible for that. But I
       still don't think you're the right person to handle list
       maintenance, and I'll continue saying so until the issue is
       resolved through some consensus of the list participants.

       [rant off]

Received on Sun Apr 12 1998 - 22:09:31 BST

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