On The Role Of Biocomputing Services {RE: structure of bionet}

Reinhard Doelz doelz at comp.bioz.unibas.ch
Sun Aug 28 04:20:35 EST 1994

Soaring  Bear (bear at helium.gas.uug.arizona.edu) wrote:

: There's probably a whole lot of agreement that we don't
: need immigration lawyer ads posted to all groups.   

Correct. We do not need Soaring Bears versus Doelz postings either.
As many mails crossed the Atlanic since then, I apologize that I 
followup this once again but I consider this posts as a positive 
contribution rather than a defense (which means that there is nothing 
to defend as I didn't do something wrong). Instead of answering my 
private mails Mr. Bear misquotes erraneous fragments from mails sent 
long time ago. The following is rather specific on the particular issue, 
follow the arrow for bionet-relevant issues if you are in a rush.  
\/    : A really good example of this controversy is with dibug
||    : mail reflector, for Biosym software users.  (It is an "unmoderated"
||    : mail reflector founded by Peter Shenkin on Oct 8 1990 and had its
||    : maintenance transferred to Dr Doelz a couple years ago.)
||    The DIBUG list has a charter what to post in there, and some of the 
||    postings did not quite follow that track after a while but ended in 
||    a mail exchange which wasn't honored by many subscribers, as 
||    communicated to me privately. They issued words like 'becoming 
||    boring' and 'too noisy'.
||    Upon warnings in February 1994, the list resumed normal operation. 
||    In order to reestablish its good reputation, it is currently paused 
||    and will be up again in September - no need to worry. And, it is up and 
||    open with WAIS searchable gophers all time, and on FTP. This service 
||    is free, complimented by our site to the community, as many other 
||    activities we are involved in. Sending Mails to hundreds of people (at 
||    least with the current PTT fees in Europe) isn't free either for the 
||    provider.
||    : But this situation has the added complexity of someone who
||    : took on the responsibility for an already existing group
||    : with a charter of "UNmoderated".
||    Again, I explained to Soaring Bear that his current activities are 
||    not freedom of speech but more close to 'libel'. The group IS 
||    unmoderated and STAYS unmoderated and WAS NEVER anything else. It 
||    is currently paused for reasons which were explained explicitly in 
||    detail to both the list and to Mr. Bear (I counted more than 15 A4 
||    pages last time I cleaned my mailbix from some letters).  

Can anyone recommend how to eduacte valuable discussion partners?  For 
the sake of realistic description, Mr. Bear has contributed reasonably 
to the community before. However, since two weeks this individual 
carries his personal opinion out to the world, quotes my letters in 
erraneous context, tries to convince the world that I am a bad guy, 
and misbehaves in netiquette. This has nothing to do with scientific 
discussion. It is a good example, however, how a good idea and an 
'ideal' intention to excnange information freely can be poisoned by 
some few topics. 

In bionet we have some of these 'runner topics' as well, as I have the 
feeling that 'Big Foot' project is not quite appreciated by all bionet 
readers - neither will be this campaign which was unfortunately raised. 
There is just a minor difference; as one is on a subject matter and one
is on personal matters. How can we avoid that subject matters turn into 
personal matters - isn't this a tolerance issue? I always thought
that scientists should be capable to discuss items in a 'ruleset' form. 
There was once the 'Ludwig Plutonium' posting series in another bio-related
group where someone just insisted that science is all wrong (well, it 
was not quite as strong but it was the idea that a topic which did not 
belong into the group was started to be discussed at length). Freedom 
of speech is fine and ultimatively necessary but we don't want to get 
too far away from a scientific topic if we are in a science group, right?
There is always alt.flame or a social group where chatting is more 
appropriate. Mailing lists, in particular, are more cruical as they carry
a different logistics. Mail exploders, in particular those where a large 
part of the community is plain science and reads only personal mail 
otherwise, are so much focussed that social chatting is inappropriate. 

So, how do we suggest to a free, unmoderated group that a charter is 
to be followed? 


 R.Doelz         Klingelbergstr.70| Tel. x41 61 267 2247  Fax x41 61 267 2078|
 Biocomputing        CH 4056 Basel| electronic Mail    doelz at ubaclu.unibas.ch|
 Biozentrum der Universitaet Basel|-------------- Switzerland ---------------|
<a href=http://beta.embnet.unibas.ch/>EMBnet Switzerland:info at ch.embnet.org</a> 

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