[Theforum] Inviting other people

Madhu Menon webguru at vsnl.net
Mon Nov 19 13:55:48 CST 2001


At 12:47 AM 11/20/2001, A. Erickson opined:

>My example was hypothetical as we have always evaluated articles before
>they go live. What I was speaking to was the reputation hit that we
>might take. I'm just comparing quality and quantity and what happens
>when quality suffers.

You're essentially agreeing with me, Amanda, but you present a hypothetical 
case with a very low probability of happening. The people who approve 
articles will surely ensure that quality is never sacrificed for quantity. 
Or am I missing something?

>Newbies are, by my definition, not merely people who are new or young or
>inexperienced but also tend to take and take and take without giving, to

Oh, you mean list newbies as opposed to skill newbies? I get it.

>         Newbie: I am not being unreasonable!
>         Old Curmudgeon: Yes you are because of x, y, and z.
>         List Mod: Can we take this offlist, this isn't appropriate.
>         Middlebie: I really think it is appropriate, and I think Newbie
>is being tortured and blah, blah, blah.
>         Newbie: Yeah!

Hey, whaddya know? That sounds very familiar, almost as if I'd seen it 
happen somewhere. Hang on, yes I did. Just this weekend. It wasn't here 
though :D

>I'm glad that these instances are very few and far between on thelist.

Gee, I wonder why ;)   (and thank goodness for that)

I'm not one to start a war about someone else somewhere else, but if 
there's one thing I've noticed on thelist, it's that there's no one walking 
around wielding a big stick and coming down on people once every couple of 
weeks for violating the sacred code of the list knights. :(

I'm sure *you* know what I'm talking about (though other folks may be 
scratching their heads), but conflict arises when people go into 
confrontational mode and start attacking people instead of opinions. As 
long as we refrain from calling others names, we should be fine.

In your example, it really depends upon how "Old Curmudgeon" and "List Mod" 
handle the original poster. If they immedately react in a "you don't know 
what you're talking about" manner, I expect LOTS of conflict. If you start 
telling him how little he has contributed to the list (though it may have 
nothing to do with the argument), expect to piss him off even more (and 
others too).

As pointed out earlier, we've kicked out only ONE person out in 3 years. Is 
it something magical about thelist that we don't encounter prolonged 
periods of meaningless ranting? Surely it's a stretch of the imagination to 
believe that only the reasonable people somehow ended up on thelist. I'm 
sure we too have, and will have, our share of people who only take, but as 
long as it stays a reasonably civil place, we'll be fine.

I think that people shouldn't be discriminated against because they know a 
little less than others on thelist. There shouldn't be an "eligibility 
criteria" for joining. Let people lurk. Let them take and take and take. 
We're not paying a per-person charge. I'm happy if someone benefits from 
something that I post. I do it with the hope that when I need help, there 
are people willing to return the favour without first checking how much I 
have contributed to thelist and then deciding whether I'm "eligible" to speak.

>All of this is just my own opinion on treading carefully into promoting
>thelist. We just need to think about the angles and evaluate the
>cost/benefit if we can.

Agreed. That's why I'm not saying, "let's buy some Google AdWords". All I'm 
suggesting is that we put up a description of thelist on our *own* site, 
which web development folks already visit. The other method is personal 
invite, which I suggest that we use sparingly and only for knowledgeable 
people. That too will ensure that we don't get a "parasite".

Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Amanda. I'm sorry if I've ranted far too 
much (and I know I have). I've just been feeling a bit annoyed over certain 
events on other lists and I needed to write about it. Writing allows me to 
let go of my frustration.


<<<   *   >>>
Madhu Menon
User Experience Consultant
e-mail: webguru at vsnl.net

Weblog: http://madman.weblogs.com

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