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Re: Making it happen

__/ [ Jono Bacon ] on Thursday 30 March 2006 02:43 \__

> Hi all,
> For the last few months I have been keeping an eye on this group to see
> where the discussion is heading, and keeping tabs on what kind of
> advocacy people are doing here. Unfortunatly it seems that much of the
> discussion here is boiling down to pointless flamefests between
> different people.
> This seems such a shame. COLA offers so much potential for us to
> coordinate and develop our advocacy, but it is unfortunatly being let
> down by a few people who just want to piss people off.
> I am making the assumption that the vast majority of people who are
> reading this group are interesting in helping to further the spread of
> Linux and Open Source. Much of this audience will have reasonably
> limited time to dedicate to advocacy, and all of this extra noise is
> sure to get in the way. I have been doing Open Source advocacy for a
> fair while now, and I know there are not enough troops on the ground to
> help, and it seems that all of this pointless bickering is getting in
> the way of us doing really useful things.
> My point here is that this group offers a huge amount of potential.
> Just think of the great things we could all do. Imagine how we could
> share ideas, experience and thoughts to better optimise this limited
> amount of time that people have for their advocacy. I am really
> interested in finding more and more ways to make people get better
> results when advocating to others. No-one likes banging the same drum
> over and over again and not getting anything tuneful out of it - you
> want to get effective results from your advocacy quickly.
> Anyway, like I say, I think COLA offers a real opportunity for advocacy
> of Open Source and Linux, but we need to organise, plan and ignore the
> trolls who degrade COLA. So the queston is, who wants to get the
> advocacy machine rolling?

There will always be a few people who are just too tempted to reply to those
who disrupt [1]. In turn, these people allow the group to degrade to the
level which you perceive so objectionable. Roy Culley has my full support
for his so-called 'biassed' stats where he discourages what he refers to as
"Troll feeding" and at the same time humiliates and insult those who seek to
have discussion degrade in terms of quality. Sadly, UseNet is not a
moderated forum. While it's clear that many people are /not/ here to discuss
Linux, they are allowed to 'noisify' threads. This makes the threads longer,
off-topic, vulgar at times and overall quite repellent.

Trolls will probably continue to be fed, which will give them incentive to
return. So what gives? We probably have to accept their existence and set up
filters to have them ignored. But what about new readers who cannot discern
ham from spam? Or those who have no newsreader support for filters?

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_Trolls

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