abusive e-mail from Litch

R. Michael Litchfield litch
Tue Feb 28 14:02:31 PST 1995

> The subscribers to this list are people with an interest in the SCA.  And 
> I have no more tolerance for obscene e-mail than I have for obscene phone 
> calls.  The number one standard for participation in SCA activities is 
> courtesy.

This list is patently not an SCA activity. It is related, but can hardly
beconsidered to be within the pale of the society any more than drinking
beer with  friends who might be members, or dating someone who might
be a member. This is a form of social activity SEPERATE from the

> Michael, I'm no computer-saavy net surfer, but my understanding of Internet in
> general, and Usenet in particular, is that it is anarchy.  Why are you treating
> the "Netiquette" file as a governing document?  If we choose to expect a higher
> standard of courtesy on this list than in the Usenet, we can do this.  This is
> not the Usenet.

Your understanding is incomplete. It is not an anarchy it is a very loosely
organized oligarchy in which one's social position (and resultant power) in 
largely determined by skill at electronic communication. While this looks 
a lot like an anarchy in practice it is not, there ARE checks and balances.

You are correct this is not usenet, it is however much closer to usenet than
it is to a formal business meeting or a high court. In fact the only reason
I did not actively advocate the creation of a regional newsgroup instead
of the list was that doesn't fit well into the regional lists. In view of
that fact it is clear that the expected standard of behiavior should
be closer to that of usenet than what one might find elsewhere.

> I might turn your argument around and ask you if you can't deal with 
> hearing about computers and computer-generated controversies at SCA 
> events, how do you expect to get by in the real world when your employer 
> calls you on weekends, or interupts your vacation?

[72 columns is the typically accepted standered, it is rude of you to force
 people to reformat your text into a readable response]

I would expect them to pay through the nose for that sort of intrusion on my
time. Shall we then have pitched battles in court about modern political
disputes? Shall we argue cars in bardic?

> Finally, neither the SCA nor the Internet are places.  Each are groups of 
> people who are doing what they most like to do.  People behave in the 
> fashion that they find most rewarding.  Unprovoked private e-mail of such 
> an intimidating nature as what I and others have received, hypocritically 
> claiming to be concerned about what new people might think, should not be 
> rewarding.

The email you refered to was clearly not "unprovoked" it was a response to
a publicly demonstrated behaivior. It was done in an approriate setting in
a relatively mild tone. If you don't believe that try it on a newsgroup or
on a volatile newsgroup. People occaisonally behave in fashions which are
not clearly rewarding to an outside observer because that observer lacks
a complete understanding of the motivations of the actor.

> "Flaming" people, like beating them up physically, is an ability, not a right.
> On this list, we don't think it should be done with impunity. 

Awfully liberal with the use of that we arn't ya son? I think flaming is an
art and a tool, I am not alone in this.

> - Viscount Galen of Bristol


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