Top Posting (from a digest subscribers P.O.V.)

From: Eric F. <>
Date: Fri Feb 25 21:43:32 2005

> The *only* reason for inline or bottom posting IMNSHO
> is to refresh readers memory about what has been said
> in the past, and to keep things in context if there
> could be doubt.

As a long time digest-mode subscriber, I'll chime in here briefly.

I find bottom/inline posting immensely easier on my chops than that of top
posting. While reading a ClassicCmp digest issue (and encountering a top
post), I find myself spending a good deal of time arrowing down and then
back up in order to draw the current message into context.

While this, in itself, is not such a chore, consider the differences when
doing it in individual message mode versus digest mode.

In individual message mode, you can often just hit a bunch of page downs
without having to worry about overshooting the mark. (If you do overshoot
it, you are automatically stopped at the end of the message.) After you
have absorbed the context of the quoted message, an easy hammering of
Page-Ups (or Ctrl-Home, etc.) gets you to the top without fail.

In digest mode, my last paragraph above is completely thrown out. One must
involve themselves in "precision" scrolling (both up & down) every time a
top-post is encountered.

Considering there are 20-50 or so messages in each digest, well, that's a
lot of screen jockeying.

Whether this whole discussion has a right or wrong answer, I don't know.
But my preference is for bottom/inline posting, far and away.

I also don't think this is a stupid discussion, as computers have taken on
a very important role in the arena of communication between human folk. It
is damn hard enough sometimes to appropriately communicate via the email'ed
word what is normally communicated in person. I think it worthwhile to
refine how we all go about delivering the mechanics of a typewritten
sentence to each other.

There is a certain etiquette in place when talking on the telephone, right?
Most of us say "Hello" at the beginning, "ByeBye" and the end, and engage
in multitudes of speech behaviors which communicate a ton of stuff without
even saying a word (pauses, deep breath, etc.). I think email (and mailing
lists, etc.) deserves the same attention to detail as the POT does.

OK... that's my $0.02 into the spittoon...
Received on Fri Feb 25 2005 - 21:43:32 GMT

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