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Re: [lewiscarroll] Re:Alice or Not?

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  • Arne Moll
    ... Well, I sure hope you re joking now! What about all the countless authors who, long before email started to exist, used irony, jokes and sarcasm in a
    Message 1 of 6 , May 16, 2000
      At 08:31 AM 16-5-00 -0700, you wrote:
      >Dear Karoline (and others),
      > This illustrates the problem of using humor in email. Without
      >adding that stupid little smiling figure [:-)] it seems very difficult
      >to convey that you're not entirely serious and I hate using that
      >figure.

      Well, I sure hope you're joking now! What about all the countless authors
      who, long before email started to exist, used irony, jokes and sarcasm in a
      brilliant way, without ever even thinking of using smileys and frowns and
      what not!
      Indeed, I have never seen Lewis Carroll use any, but I'm sure we all agree
      some of his ironic pieces are pure magic!

      > People WILL take you seriously. Unless any of you has a
      >solution, I will continue posting the occasion joke, sarcasm, irony,
      >etc. and will have my intentions mistaken from time to time and will
      >apologize frome time to time as Karoline just did. Any ideas?

      Smileys are for people who don't know how to write. Or how to read. And
      unfortunately, because more and more people are using email every day,
      there are more and more people who don't know how to write or read.
      But just write well, and no apologies will be needed. (By the way, I myself
      think that Karolines irony was pretty obvious.)

      Cheers,
      Arne
    • Melanie Miller Fletcher
      ... Oh, nonsense, Arne. I m a technical writer and a published fiction writer (SFWA member), and I use smileys. Emoticons are a good idea when it comes to
      Message 2 of 6 , May 16, 2000
        >At 08:31 AM 16-5-00 -0700, you wrote:
        >Smileys are for people who don't know how to write. Or how to read.

        Oh, nonsense, Arne. I'm a technical writer and a published fiction writer
        (SFWA member), and I use smileys. Emoticons are a good idea when it comes
        to humor for a number of reasons:

        1) Not everyone has the same sense of humor -- it changes radically
        depending on your culture, what country you live in and how you were
        raised. Something that would obviously strike someone as funny may
        unintentionally offend someone else. And a hell of a lot of people
        wouldn't know irony if it came up and bit them on the ass.

        2) Email and news posts are not always written with the detail and care
        that would be used, f'rex, with a doctoral dissertation (or a professional
        publication). We are, in essence, chatting here, not lecturing.
        Misinterpretations can occur that could be easily sidestepped with a :-).

        3) We often use tone and body language to interpret what is being said to
        us -- the phrase, "Nice outfit," can be taken in different ways, depending
        on whether the speaker is rolling her eyes or smiling in admiration.
        Using a purely text-based format removes this facility, and can make it
        difficult to 'read' ambiguous statements.

        Using emotions like a smiley is actually good netiquette, when used in a
        reasonable manner.

        MMF

        Melanie Miller Fletcher xanadu1@... http://www.io.com/~hoosier
        Expatriate Chicagoan * Babe Feminist * SFLAaE/BS

        Acting is for those who need to have people pay close attention to them.
        I write, which means I have a large ego best viewed from a distance.
      • Arne Moll
        ... Well, I hope this isn t going to be a tedious thread, but all I was trying to say was, how come noone ever needed smileys before in the past? Surely,
        Message 3 of 6 , May 16, 2000
          At 01:58 AM 17-5-00 +0200, Melanie wrote:

          >Using emotions like a smiley is actually good netiquette, when used in a
          >reasonable manner.

          Well, I hope this isn't going to be a tedious thread, but all I was trying
          to say was, how come noone ever needed smileys before in the past? Surely,
          people were discussing things over the mail too, or arguing things for a
          larger readers public, without immediately trying to write a serious
          dissertation. Surely, not everyone had the same sense of humor? And
          definitely, people haven't been handicapped at all because they couldn't
          use body language to express themselves in written documents since the
          invention of the alphabet.
          Remember the letters of Lewis Carroll himself, often so funny and ironic,
          and he wrote literally thousands of them, to everyone. He was, basically,
          'chatting' - I doubt he wrote them with a literary purpose. He just wrote
          well. And that was simply my advice to Bob.
          Besides, I myself like to see this discussion list as something more than
          just 'chatting'. I like to think that sometimes it actually *is* of
          'dissertation' quality, and useful to everyone, regardless of culture
          and/or sense of humor.

          Cheers,
          Arne
        • Melanie Miller Fletcher
          ... God forbid. :-) ... Oh, please, Arne -- misunderstandings happen in writing all the time. Should we debate one of the reasons why Napoleon lost at
          Message 4 of 6 , May 17, 2000
            >At 01:58 AM 17-5-00 +0200, Melanie wrote:
            >
            >>Using emotions like a smiley is actually good netiquette, when used in a
            >>reasonable manner.
            >
            >Well, I hope this isn't going to be a tedious thread

            God forbid. :-)

            >but all I was trying
            >to say was, how come noone ever needed smileys before in the past? Surely,
            >people were discussing things over the mail too, or arguing things for a
            >larger readers public, without immediately trying to write a serious
            >dissertation. Surely, not everyone had the same sense of humor? And
            >definitely, people haven't been handicapped at all because they couldn't
            >use body language to express themselves in written documents since the
            >invention of the alphabet.

            Oh, please, Arne -- misunderstandings happen in writing all the time.
            Should we debate one of the reasons why Napoleon lost at Waterloo? The use
            of an emoticon is simply a shorthand way of expressing meta-meaning on a
            fast turnover medium of exchange like the Internet.

            >Remember the letters of Lewis Carroll himself, often so funny and ironic,
            >and he wrote literally thousands of them, to everyone. He was, basically,
            >'chatting' - I doubt he wrote them with a literary purpose. He just wrote
            >well.

            And even he was misunderstood on occasion, I seem to recall. I'll be happy
            to look up the references if you like.

            >Besides, I myself like to see this discussion list as something more than
            >just 'chatting'. I like to think that sometimes it actually *is* of
            >'dissertation' quality, and useful to everyone, regardless of culture
            >and/or sense of humor.

            And sometimes it is. But not always. I don't read this list for
            dissertation material or learned screeds -- I read it because I'm
            interested in Dodgson and like talking to people with similar interests.
            And to be perfectly honest, I'm not always going to vet my posts to make
            sure they're beautifully written -- I've got other things to do.

            Which is not to say that I don't enjoy excellent writing on this list -- I
            do. But not everyone is approaching it with the same intentions. Cut us
            some slack, yes?

            MMF

            Melanie Miller Fletcher xanadu1@... http://www.io.com/~hoosier
            Expatriate Chicagoan * Babe Feminist * SFLAaE/BS

            Acting is for those who need to have people pay close attention to them.
            I write, which means I have a large ego best viewed from a distance.
          • Arne Moll
            At 09:25 AM 17-5-00 +0200, you wrote: ... Melanie, I don t feel like continuing this discussion on the mailing list for ages, but remember, I wrote my
            Message 5 of 6 , May 17, 2000
              At 09:25 AM 17-5-00 +0200, you wrote:
              <snip>

              >And to be perfectly honest, I'm not always going to vet my posts to make
              >sure they're beautifully written -- I've got other things to do.
              >
              >Which is not to say that I don't enjoy excellent writing on this list -- I
              >do. But not everyone is approaching it with the same intentions. Cut us
              >some slack, yes?
              >

              Melanie, I don't feel like continuing this discussion on the mailing list
              for ages, but remember, I wrote my reply because someone asked advice
              whether to use smileys or not in *humorous* posts. I mean, if you're going
              to take the trouble of writing a humorous post, shouldn't you at least take
              the time to actually make sure it is a well-written post? Otherwise, what's
              the point of posting it anyway?
              And besides, isn't part of the fun of being ironic the possible
              misinterpretation for the non-initiated ? Or the initial confusion, which
              makes place for understanding? If there's nothing left to the imagination ,
              the intelligence and the creativity of the reader, then what kind of medium
              is internet anyway?

              Regards,

              Arne
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