Re: Scouts-L (multiple postings)
Sat, 31 Aug 1996 13:56:19 -0500
Leslie Fife wrote:
>I have read with some amusement Mike's multiple posts about why
>multiple posting isn't a problem.
Yeah, now that I've thought about it, it IS rather funny that I have spent
now three postings here explaining something that most folks don't "catch
on" from reading the WELCOME letter which is sent when you first start
Here, just in case you "glanced over it" on the way to reading the first
from the list, is what is said there, starting with the fourth paragraph:
>>WHAT DO WE TALK ABOUT ON SCOUTS-L?
(deletion paragraph describing whom we are)
>>We talk about a wide variety of issues and topics, from the silliness
>>of a "Woodbadge animal" to the very seriousness of child protection
>>policies that many organizations have recently installed. While we
>>don't profess to have the answer to EVERY issue or question, we do
>>spend a great deal of time answering as many as we can. In most cases,
>>we not only answer the "where it can be found in the literature"
>>question, but also give some practical applications of why it is or is
>>We tell stories of how our units or groups are doing, to inspire and to
>>just share with others our anxieties, our fears and our joys. We get
>>personal occasionally, because we have grown to be more than merely
>>people discussing youth programs...we've become friends. We care when
>>our fellow members are in the hospital, or when their new son or
>>daughter is born, or when we attended our first training session or
>>when we decide that perhaps our service is needed elsewhere.
>>And we are listened to, comforted, and encouraged to move forward by
>>the others here. We get lots of useful answers and suggestions and we
>>joke around with each other from time to time. Then, we move on to
>>another topic and the process starts over again.
>>As you can imagine, not everyone here is in total agreement every day
>>with all issues and resolutions of issues. We do argue, we express
>>ourselves with deep personal emotion, but we also remember that we are
>>in the company of fellow Scouters...people who understand that
>>disagreements are a part of being human; that the disagreement is with
>>the other point of view, and NOT the other person. Therefore, you will
>>NOT find here the outlandish language and ongoing discussions about
>>topics that have no real answer to them. We don't have time for such
>>nonsense...we're too busy discussing issues that CAN be resolved.
(the complete posting, in case you need it, is always available from our
listserver: send a command to LISTSERV@TCUBVM.IS.TCU.EDU and in
the signature-free body of the posting, state "GET SCOUTS-L WELCOME
SCOUTS-L" without the quotation marks)
It was Fred Weber's posting on Monday which started this string, Leslie, as
he decided to use the DIGEST feature of the listserver software to get one
Scouts-L email message a day rather than up to 50. It's a nice feature.
>The original poster had a very valid point, and as one who agrees,
>I would like to chime in - but only once on this topic.
>1. Yes we could someday increase our daily limit to more than 50.
> In my opinion, that would do more harm than good. We will lose
> folks. Even 20-30 posts is a large number for many people,
> 75-100 would move us into the noise category.
20 to 30 is a LARGE NUMBER, Leslie?? I'm glad you don't subscribe to
Arrow-L, where today I've recieved 41 postings. There are some days that I
have received 60 messages from that list (it has no daily limit). And yes,
I do read most everything from the four email lists I subscribe to in
addition to Scouts-L! This is why the DIGEST feature is available, again
quoting from the WELCOME letter, "For those of you who read SCOUTS-L only
once-per-day, HAVE TROUBLE KEEPING UP WITH THE VOLUME OF EMAIL POSTINGS (my
emphasis), or those who are only reading SCOUTS-L and don't intend to post,
the DIGEST feature may be what you need. Once set, you will receive ONLY
one posting per day that contains all postings consolidated into a neat
>2. Yes it is true that any post will eventually make it to the
> list. However, let's think about this. Last time I posted,
> there were about 600 people on the list (+ DIGEST FOLKS?).
> If everyone sent 1 (one) message in a day, it would be nearly
> 2 weeks before one days messages all made it out.
However, clearly, Leslie, not EVERYONE IS HERE TO POST. There is a significant
number of people, including many that use the DIGEST feature, whom are just as I
just wrote privately to someone else "wanting the information to flow from our
heads through our fingers into their computers and printers". They will
That's fine....*I* would want them to post and some do after a while....but
To them, Scouts-L is a additional "library resource" that they can "tap and
use" with no fuss, no muss.
> But really, it is even worse than that. If five people
> each send 5 posts a day (questions, responsive replies, friendly
> chit cat, whatever) then the remaining 595 share the remaining
> 25 posts a day. This is about 24 days of posts at the current
> fifty a day limit, and that is only one post from everyone
> on one day.
So, going with your reasoning and taking a EIGHTH of that figure (because we
can figure out easily enough that in a given year, only 125 or so DIFFERENT
post to the list, so if everyone sent 1 message in a day, it would take
about three days
(50 messages a day, divided by 125 people) before EVERYONE WISHING TO DO
SO can have their "say". Nah...let's double that number and say that
Scouts-L has had a TERRIFIC YEAR, and we have 250 DIFFERENT PEOPLE in this
It would take EVERYONE five (5) days to "weigh-in" on a question.
Five days. And we leave questions and issues "open" for at least ten days (two
weeks says the WELCOME letter).
The *numbers* to me is NOT the issue.
>3. So, it is clear (to me anyway) that this is a limited resource.
But it is only limited to those that make it so, and we've tried as hard as
to be as limitless in what we talk about, how long we talk about it, and whom we
talk about it with. The evolution of all of those other lists....the
like Arrow-L and Patch-L and the "side ones" like the one for Jewish Scouts and
Scouters, for Girl Scouters, for LDS Scouts and Scouters and for the
year...those came from this list, and the "self-policing" of ourselves to
conversations dealing with a specific issue to another forum.
Our "chit chat" and "friendly messages" are neither "ongoing" nor "limited
knowledge", at least we try not to make them so.
> Too many posts limit the usefulness of the resource.
You would rather see three postings answering questions and that's it. So
Doug Gentry's reply to Bill about "A Philmont Collection" (which I'm
ordering because of the posting) you would rather not see. Or Chuck Bramlet
using his own
family to reply to Grant, which again, could have been privately sent but as
he explains it, "After reading it over, I felt that there were points in
here that haven't
yet been considered - at least in the way that _I_ see them, here." Or you
would rather leave out Greg Gough's "friendly message" directed at Ellen
about the role of our
National Honorary President.
See, there *is* a role for "chit chat" and "friendly messages" if it has
to what we do here on this list. Without those three examples, Scouters
would NOT have known that the President's "theme" and one of the BSA's
themes" are one and the same; we would not have known about the availability
of songs about and reflecting upon the Philmont experience; and we would not
received another *real life* perspective on the costs and problems
"demanding everyone get and wears a uniform".
> While friendly messages and chit chat are nice, if they get in the
> way or make or make the list unusable for a large number of
> list members, perhaps the guilty should rethink the manner and
> frequency with which they post.
THIS is the issue, Leslie: "friendly messages and chit chat" that "get in
make the list unusable for a large number of list members" (that are, and I
RECOMMEND IT, extracting and printing information for their own usage). I'm
sorry that we're NOT making Scouts-L "Extractor-friendly" nor
But it's NOT that we didn't WARN YOU (everyone, really) about the "chit
chat" and "friendly messages". It's said right up there in that WELCOME
letter, oh, about in that third and fourth paragraphs. About being
"personal occasionally, because we have grown to be more than merely people
discussing youth programs...we've become friends."
> I know I will. In keeping with that pledge, I choose not to
> respond the flurry of "it's not me", "you don't understand",
> "you're a jerk" and similar posts that may be spawned by this.
>From the bottom of my heart, Leslie, I hope that you don't get a single one
kinds of messages, for your comments too are just as important as those
However, you didn't make any room for compromise when you said:
> I care nothing for your justifications and explanations. Some
> are being greedy and selfish in the way that they use this list.
But the list is being used EXACTLY as the WELCOME letter you and I and everyone
else received says....and when it's not, we have a listowner that will tell
us all so. I
don't see how if someone --anyone-- that wants to state a question, make a
rebut an answer or point that's in line with the ideals of this list....can
be either greedy
nor selfish. I think that those people should be COMMENDED for their acts,
WHEN THEY FEEL IT IS APPROPRIATE, and when it will CONTRIBUTE to the overall
essence and continuity of this forum.
So what if Chuck or Greg or Ellen...or me...decides that we should reply to
each posting with information of our own (not just "me too" or "yeah, I
agree" or "you
hit it right on the head, bud"...those comments are better sent privately,
and that same
WELCOME letter covers those things too). Why should those people have to WAIT
until such time that "everyone has had a chance to respond"?
No justifications. An explaination was done already, and it took up more
I really wanted to (after all, I wanted to talk about how American Boy
Scouts raise money here for summer camp and got "sidetracked").
(MAJ) Mike L. Walton (Settummanque, the blackeagle)
Deputy Public Affairs Officer, 21st Theater Army Area Command
Kaiserslautern, Federal Republic of Germany
"everything I say is "on the record"; speaking ONLY for myself unless indicated"
personal inquiries via firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
professional inquiries via firstname.lastname@example.org
-----FORWARD in service to youth and the nation-----
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City