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Home :: Archive :: 1996 :: March ::
Re: About This List
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 7, No. 0165.  Tuesday, 5 March 1996.

(1)     From:   Peter Herman <
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        Date:   Monday, 4 Mar 1996 21:07:26 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 7.0164 About This List

(2)     From:   Nora Kreimer <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 5 Mar 1996 01:21:30 ARG
        Subj:   Re: SHK 7.0164  About This List

(3)     From:   Louis Scheeder <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 5 Mar 1996 01:35:07 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 7.0164 About This List

(4)     From:   Heather Stephenson <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 5 Mar 1996 09:04:27 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 7.0164 About This List

(5)     From:   Harry Hill <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 05 Mar 1996 11:03:33 +0000 (HELP)
        Subj:   About This List

(6)     From:   Timothy Reed <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 5 Mar 1996 09:18:56 -0700
        Subj:   Two mailing lists (of Verona?)


(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Peter Herman <
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Date:           Monday, 4 Mar 1996 21:07:26 -0500
Subject: 7.0164 About This List
Comment:        Re: SHK 7.0164 About This List

It seems to me that Michael Saenger's suggestion is an invitation to elitism
and defeats the entire purpose of the 'net in general and these lists in
particular. Who is to decide what is chatter and what is not? And who is to say
that answers to neophyte Shakespeareans can't be of use to the rest of us?
Furthermore, what role will ideology and critical orientation play in deciding
who gets to play in the majors and who gets shunted to the bush leagues (and
Saenger's language certainly implies these value judgments)? Will John
Drakakis' witty, left of center attacks on empiricism or essentialism be deemed
less worthy than, say, the less exciting, more conventionally scholarly
discussions of feminine endings in the FE? If Saenger finds a topic
uninteresting or irrelevant to his concerns, then I suggest he avail himself of
the delete button and move on.

Peter C. Herman
Dept. of English
Georgia State U

(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Nora Kreimer <
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Date:           Tuesday, 5 Mar 1996 01:21:30 ARG
Subject: 7.0164  About This List
Comment:        Re: SHK 7.0164  About This List

I join ranks with Saenger and pluck off the red rose. I want serious academic
discussion on the one hand and a chat list for more frivolous moments. I'll
susbcribe to the other one, whichever that is, so that I get, like Shakespeare,
the best of both worlds.

(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Louis Scheeder <
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Date:           Tuesday, 5 Mar 1996 01:35:07 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 7.0164 About This List
Comment:        Re: SHK 7.0164 About This List

And dialogue, drama, conflict, and controversy would end.

Louis Scheeder

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(4)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Heather Stephenson <
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Date:           Tuesday, 5 Mar 1996 09:04:27 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 7.0164 About This List
Comment:        Re: SHK 7.0164 About This List

With English departments still debating the import of cultural studies (in
opposition to canonical studies... or so goes the debate), I have a  question
regarding Michael Saenger's request for two lists:

Who is going to get to define the terms "chatter" and "highest level of
debate?"

And will serious submissions be "put in their place" by the suggestion that
they belong on the "chat" list?  I have always considered myself one who was
all for elitism, but the thought of this "policing" bothers me.

Heather Stephenson
Georgetown University

(5)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Harry Hill <
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Date:           Tuesday, 05 Mar 1996 11:03:33 +0000 (HELP)
Subject:        About This List

But my dear fellow, garlic and sapphires in the mud, don't you know, and this
particular axle tree is not really clotted like the cream you desire, but
accommodates all sort and conditions of minds.

...even those who in their haste would mistype and thereby miss the odd plural,
the odder comma and often abjure through carelessness the dreaded semicolon. We
can hear here from the mute inglorious Miltons who don't pepper their notes
with quotations and echoes as I have, usually unnoticedperhaps, made my habit.
Quite a few of us rush to comment, and I have many times found this rather
stimulating.

*What* in me it stimulates is up to me.

(6)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Timothy Reed <
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Date:           Tuesday, 5 Mar 1996 09:18:56 -0700
Subject:        Two mailing lists (of Verona?)

Regarding your proposal to split the SHAKSPER mailing list in two:

As well intentioned as it sounds, trying to split the SHAKSPER mailing list
simply will not work. One person's definition of chatter is invaluable
information to another. I often am very interested in the replies to a request
for info...on the Pennington "Hamlet" book, for instance. There's a good chance
I'll be playing Hamlet this fall, and I would never have heard of the book
without this resource.

Your request sounds like one that is frequently made by those new to mailing
lists or newsgroups on the net. This is not meant as an insult, merely an
observation; if your experience is otherwise, I apologize. Self moderation will
not work. People are just too likely to reply to a message without thinking
where it should go. And new members need some time to get the feel of what goes
on which list. You'll run into the constant arguments of whether a particular
post is on topic or not, and wind up generating more noise than you've cleared
up.

Moderator intervention has its drawbacks too, not the least of which is the
burden on Hardy Cook's time. He has done a Herculean task in maintaining it so
far...give the guy a break, don't load him down with more to do. But given any
particular moderator, there are always people who are unhappy with his
decisions and who rant and rave about censorship, and they do have a point.
Would everyone on the two lists be happy with all the decisions he made?
Probably not. Hardy has done a very wise thing...he distributes the messages as
they come to him with virtually no editing. (I imagine that he discards
messages that have absolutely nothing to do with the topic at hand, but
otherwise we see what he gets.)

So how to solve the problem? Like this. I am writing this as an e-mail to you
rather than posting it to the list, because I feel that this message is more
appropriate as a direct communication than distributed to the list members. (I
am also forwarding a copy to Hardy Cook, because I believe the suggestions to
follow might help. If Hardy thinks it is appropriate to post this to the list,
I give him full permission to do so.) Perhaps Hardy should periodically post
reminders to the list that members should consider whether their posts to the
list are of interest many of the members, or just a few. Heated discussions
back and forth between two opposing members on some obscure topic are generally
not of interest to the masses; the members in question should relegate their
argument to private e-mail. I have always adopted the philosophy that if it is
of interest to at least a handful of people I'll post it, otherwise I'll carry
on private correspondence.

You're right that SHAKSPER is a list where one expects a high level of
discourse and scholarship. I think that most of the posts I have read have met
those expectations. If things are getting a little careless and sloppy, a
gentle reminder that what gets posted goes to over 600 people and to keep it of
interest to them is more than sufficient at present.

There are whole subject topics on SHAKSPER that are of no interest to me.
Thankfully Hardy groups posts together under a subject title and I simply
delete them without reading. Readers of mailing lists have to develop the
skills to separate what they want from what they don't.

Timothy Reed
The Upstart Crow Theatre Company
Boulder, Colorado
 

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