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eric.scheid at ironclad.net.au
Wed Jun 15 15:51:56 EST 2005
On 15/6/05 1:04 PM, "Russell Ashdown" <russell at ashdown.net.au> wrote:
>> until lurkers bother to participate, though, it's hard to see why the
>> preferences of lurkers should be prioritised over the preferences of
>> actual participants.
> I don't often agree with the ramblings of some Linkers, but in this
> particular example, Craig has made a powerful point. It has often
> intrigued me that Link has always appeared to have "more Lurkers than
> Linkers" (tm). I have sometimes wondered if that has been because of
> political sensitivities or for other reasons:
Lurkers are participants in training. It used to be common etiquette that
one lurked on a list before jumping right in and participating. It also used
to be good list etiquette to consult any FAQs or archives before
contributing, and that contributions along the lines of "me too" were
unwanted and discouraged.
The emphasis, evidently, was on adding value.
And now merely "participating" is enough? Feh!
Casting this question as a choice between "lurkers" and "participants" is an
example of framing the debate. Merely "participating" is not enough, one
must add value, or at least not subtract value.
One value a participant can add is by contributing to threads which match
the expertise or knowledge of lurkers (ie. be on-topic for the forum), thus
occasioning their de-lurking. Threads which are repetitive, vitriolic, and
veering wildly off-topic do not provide this value.
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