Luis Villa compares mailing lists and parties
on his blog. He is reacting to a blog posting
by Máirín Duffy that mocks up a web-based mailing list interface that incorporates feedback for readers and posters. Villa sees the feedback as being essential to reducing "bad conversations" on mailing lists.
"First, the similarities. At most parties, like most mailing lists, most people want to have interesting conversations, and they understand the shared social standards and interests of the other people at the party. And at most parties and most mailing lists there are a handful of people are boors who probably dont want to spoil the party, but who violate those shared norms- some in very mild ways (boring, talking too loud, posting too much), or maybe some less mild (the guy who doesnt think hes a racist, but really is.) If youve got similar mixes of people, why then do parties usually handle boors well, while mailing lists often fail and flame out?
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