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Cross posting policy

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  • Didier
    Lambengolmor message #694 by Carl Hostetter was cross-posted by its author to (at least, to my own knowledge) four Elvish-related mailing lists: elfling-d,
    Message 1 of 2 , Jun 24, 2004
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      Lambengolmor message #694 by Carl Hostetter was cross-posted by its
      author to (at least, to my own knowledge) four Elvish-related mailing
      lists: elfling-d, tolklang, sindict and lambengolmor itself. That it
      is a cross-post is indicated on the copies, but not on the original
      message to lambengolmor itself (presumably sent before the cross-
      posting was made).

      While cross-posting to several groups of related interests is not,
      per se, forbidden, most Netiquette and Usenet rules tend to regard it
      as a somewhat poor practice, susceptible of being found 'rude' when
      persons are involved. It is, at least, a practice that should be
      considered with some care, as recommended in most formal Netiquette
      guides (1)(2)(3). In common practice, cross-posting is therefore
      often mainly restrained to informative announcements (e.g. one could
      possibly announce the availability of a new piece of software on
      several different computer-related lists, or the publication of a new
      book on several literature-focussed lists, etc.).

      Even in that particular case (sharing 'pure' information), restraint
      is often advised, in order to avoid spamming and what could sound as
      inappropriate advertisement. Some list policies do even try to go as
      far as forbiding cross-posting, or to enforce some naming rules in
      the subject of such messages (such as a [CROSSPOST] tag) so that
      users are immediately informed of the nature of the message. While
      this is hopefully not the case here (I believe in responsible conduct
      from members rather than absolute "rules"), I'd like to discuss the

      Cross-posting for information is fine, within the above-mentioned
      limits and rules of appropriateness.

      Cross-posting of criticisms and/or judgements of value is, in my
      humble opinion, a somewhat different issue, even if such criticism
      are basically welcome and encouraged. Especially when individuals
      mentioned in the message are members of the various list targeted the
      poster. In the case of message #694, I am suscribing to the four
      mailing-lists mentioned above (even if not participating actively to
      some), and I do find it a bit offensive to see the same message(4)
      being sent to several places. It is hard rather to follow when one
      does'nt have full free time to follow all these lists but would
      sincerely wish to address the issues mentioned in the message. As far
      as the claimed (and deserved) scholarship of lambengolmor is at
      issue, I do think that such cross-postings should be avoided, to
      allow better discussion in one place rather than scattering the
      information in several places.

      I still fail to understand why message #694 could have required being
      cross-posted, while other criticisms and comments haven't always been
      treated like that in the past. I sincerely don't believe that Carl
      wanted it to sound offensive, but I felt-ill-at ease regarding how
      (and where) to answer his concerns and to discuss the issues raised
      by his message, some of which I do think as important and actually
      true. If the information was really felt important to share on
      several lists (which I leave to others to judge), a simple link to
      the original message on lambengolmor would perhaps have been
      preferable, in order to ensure the discussion would be continued
      there and that readers coming across the message later could be
      redirected directly to that discussion. What I am questioning, in the
      end, is how to consider the practices of scholarship and cross-
      posting altogether.

      Again, I feel ill-at-ease, being involved, to address why such cross-
      posting 'hurted' me (so to speak -- nobody is dead, of course, and I
      don't have any hard feelings :). By posting here on lambengolmor-d my
      thoughts on this issue, please also understand that I do not want to
      look as wishing to restrain criticism, of course. I have always
      regarded criticism (even very harsh ones, which this one is of course
      not) as a path to progress. But I feel something could have been
      different, and I am therefore offering these thoughts about cross-
      posting issues on lambengolmor-d as a matter of reflection.

      Kind regards.


      (1) RFC 1855: Netiquette Guidelines
      "When sending a message to more than one mailing list, especially if
      the lists are closely related, apologize for cross-posting.", etc.

      (2) Google groups posting guide
      "A posting that is cross-posted (i.e. lists multiple newsgroups on
      the Newsgroups: header line) to a few appropriate newsgroups is fine,
      but even with cross-posts, restraint is advised."

      (3) MailTalk Guidelines on etiquette
      "Think before cross-posting, some people belong to more than one list"

      (4) Where some points do certainly call for a response, a
      clarification and possibly an open discussion, and where some points
      could be regarded, if I was of a more susceptible nature, as somewhat
      rude attacks on personal intentions (the "worse and even worse"
      statement and the argument of implication in Neo-Sindarin coinages,
      for instance)
    • Carl F. Hostetter
      I did indeed give careful consideration to the cross-posting of my message, and stand by it. The message had several different purposes, each of which was
      Message 2 of 2 , Jun 24, 2004
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        I did indeed give careful consideration to the cross-posting of my
        message, and stand by it. The message had several different purposes,
        each of which was served by the various forums posted into. One was to
        bring up the strictly linguistic matters covered therein: that was
        served by Lambengolmor. Another was to correct the widely held and
        mistaken notion among would-be "speakers" of "Sindarin" that _ned_
        means 'in' and is attested as such: that was served by the postings to
        Elfling-d (as a gateway to Elfling readers), TolkLang, and the "Council
        of Elrond", the chief places where I've seen this and other, similar
        mistaken notions held as true, and where the contrary message would
        have the most chance of having the desired effect by reaching the eyes
        of those most in need of seeing it (sc., the "speakers" that congregate
        in those forums). The third purpose was to point out some obvious
        errors in Didier's dictionary: that was served by the posting to the
        Sindict group. Given these somewhat orthogonal purposes, posting to
        multiple groups that cater to those purposes seems perfectly reasonable
        to me, and I would do so again in similar circumstances. Reading
        anything beyond these purposes for cross-posting into my decision is

        | Carl F. Hostetter Aelfwine@... http://www.elvish.org |
        | |
        | ho bios brachys, he de techne makre. |
        | Ars longa, vita brevis. |
        | The lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne. |
        | "I wish life was not so short," he thought. "Languages take |
        | such a time, and so do all the things one wants to know about." |

        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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