[Bioforum] Bionet public discussions future: please comment

BIOSCI Administrator biosci at net.bio.net
Thu Jul 13 17:44:29 EST 2006

Dear bio-sciences community,

It may well be that scientists, students and general public
interested in biology public news and discussion are not aware that
there is a new threat to continuing Bionet's public science
discussions.  This comes from the joint effects of Google and related
Internet search systems which make it easy to locate public
information on people, and a desire by some to control/remove access
to their publications.

As stated in http://www.bio.net/docs/biosci-termsofuse.html
the policy of Bionet has since 1992 been one of public,
open discussion.  This has been documented in many postings at Bionet,
and its web site documents.  Personal privacy has never been a part
of Bionet, nor an expectation for those using it to reach a public

Some people dispute this, to the extent of bringing legal action on
the issue of personal privacy, which likely will damage the ability of
Bionet to continue its function.

Those of you who use Bionet should voice your views here, on the
relative importance of public access to Bionet versus personal privacy
restricting public access.

Please discuss this publicly at bionet.general (Usenet)
or e-mail to bioforum at net.bio.net

Bionet policies should reflect the consensus view of bioscientists who
use and benefit from this system, and I will do my best to see this
happens as long as I remain the caretaker of Bionet.

I favor maintaining the more than decade-old public policy, including
public access to archived news and discussion, but will make any
changes needed to support the consensus view of the science community.

Sincerely, Don Gilbert

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