[LINK] Maintaining the link list - as a mailing list

Robin Whittle rw at firstpr.com.au
Sat Feb 19 18:44:51 AEDT 2011

Short version:  Why I support the Link list remaining as a
                mailing list

It looks like once a critical mass of volunteers raise their hands,
they are in!  Three should be fine, but if there's anyone else who
wants to lend a hand on the Good Ship Link, then I would support that.

Generally, I think, web-forums have lower signal-to-noise ratio than
mailing lists.  There's a lot of overlap in this regard and there are
some spectacular exceptions where forums include pictures and very
thoughtful discussion.  I am not opposed to them as such.  Its just
that I am very happy with Link being a mailing list and I doubt I
would spend the time to pursue these discussions if they were in a forum.

I do not regularly use any forums.  I do find interesting things in
web forums and if I have something to contribute, I join and add
something to it.  But I don't regularly visit them, and if I do, I
typically have to fuss around to get my password via email before I
can write something to them.  With forums, unless I go to extra
effort, I have no record of what I wrote, or of what I am reading.

I am on dozens of mailing lists about various subjects.  I will write
in a separate message how I do this in a companion message: "Why I
like email, mailing lists, don't use forums regularly and don't like
Facebook, SMS, Twitter, IRC . . ."

The outcome is that I check my email (in Thunderbird) and instantly
see all the activity on every mailing list I am a member of.  This
includes some I rarely if ever post to.  I then use Expunge (compact
folder) to get rid of all the mailing list messages from my Inbox
(except any I what to keep, which I untag with the delete key), since
my server's mail filtering system has already tagged them for
deletion.  This is described in the companion message.

I would never be involved in these discussions if I had to look at the
latest postings in multiple forum sites.  Also, each such forum site
has a different page for each thread, so it would be extremely labour
intensive to keep an eye on multiple discussions.  To try to keep up
with those discussions, making contributions quickly, rather than days
later, would be impossible.

I guess RSS is meant to help with this, but I don't need another
protocol or mode of communication in my life.

In my companion message I list the various forms of electronic
communication which are available and how I like them.

It comes down to email, phone and websites.  Forums have their uses,
but there's no forum I regularly check.  I don't do Facebook, SMS,
RSS, Twitter or IRC.  I occasionaly read and write to Usenet.  Yahoo
Groups are an apparently unique combination of a robust mailing list
system integrated with forum-like web archives, which can also be used
entirely without email, via the web interface.  (Google groups doesn't
have such good moderation capabilities, last time I looked.) I am on
many Yahoo Groups and contribute to some.

I can search my own IMAP archives of mailing lists, going back years,
to find things of interest.  Search engines don't necessarily index
all the postings in a mailing list.

  - Robin             http://www.firstpr.com.au

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