Teasing vs. the SCA and e-mail

I. Marc Carlson LIB_IMC at centum.utulsa.edu
Thu Dec 5 10:26:49 PST 1996

>First, let me say right off that I have no desire to begin a disagreement
>with Diarmuit on the matter of e-mail communications.  I would, however,
>like to argue a bit ("argue" in the original, Latin sense of the word:
>*ARGUERE*--to clarify).

If we disagree, we disagree.  You are unlikely to convince me that I'm
wrong about some of these things, and convincing you that you are in error
is the farthest thing from my mind.

>Well, yes and no. The medium is not conducive to expressions of body
>language, and modern Americans--as any writing teacher can attest--have
>learned oral expression as their primary communications mode...

I disagree that this has anything to do with the problems inherent in
electronic communication since, unless I'm sorely mistaken, *most* humans
learn oral expression as their primary commnications mode.

>>In other words, a simple misunderstanding.  Don't take it too badly, I 
>>really doubt that the original author (I haven't read any of the follow-up)
>>meant to disregard your levity, but rather used it as a stepping stone
>>to a more important (to them) topic.
>--clearly indicates that he also took Pug's meaning.  Diarmuit also offers,
>here, a rather harsh judgment on Crandall's response....

Excuse me?  How is suggesting that the author (I'll take your word for
it being Crandall since I don't have the original notes in front of me)
was simply using a joking comment as a means to move along to a more
serious discussion "rather harsh"?  It is a communication technique
that *I*, for instance, use regularly.

>Again, I think some clarification is in order.  Failures of type (a) and (b)
>are common among the best writers and readers.  Ovid's jokes got him
>banished from Rome....Misreadings will occur.

I'm sorry that you felt that I was unclear in my explanation.  I had
hoped that not pointing out the fact that MOST communications errors are,
in fact, someone's "fault" I might avoid having to express an opinion
on just *whose* fault it was.  Far better to fall back on the simple
nonjudgmental statements based on the premise that *all* information
transmission is based on the following model:

     A [Message Transmission]--->[signal]--->[Message Reception] B

>...If you inadvertently step into a debate of which you were previously
>uninformed, you're likely to draw unexpected fire.

You mean like now.

>...exactly the sort of thing Diarmuit's claiming.  People who ignore 
>content in order to address context--who ignore context in order to 
>address content--make us, as writers, feel used...

Yes, they do.

>...Pointing out that a misunderstood statement was merely a joke, politely 
>offers clarification.  Accusing someone who doesn't see the humor in your 
>joke of humorlessness is merely rude.

If you felt that this was what I was doing in this case, I would be 
*fascinated* to see how you came to that conclusion.


More information about the Ansteorra mailing list