[MUD-Dev] META: Making the list public?

clawrenc at cup.hp.com clawrenc at cup.hp.com
Fri Jul 18 11:26:24 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

In <Marcel-1.26-0717181358-d07Ky&5 at Gryphon.knoware.nl>, on 07/17/97 
   at 08:24 PM, Marian Griffith <gryphon at iaehv.nl> said:

>On Tue 15 Jul, clawrenc at cup.hp.com wrote:

>Creating archives is a lot of work but making them accessible would
>be a good idea. Not because I feel that the average reader of r.g.m.*
>is that interested in them but because it might attract somebody who


Note that the current list software automatically creates (and stores)
monthly archives and daily digests.  Thus there is no extra effort
required to create and maintain archives of list traffic.  I've
back-filled the archives collection all the way to February of this
year.  The digest collection is quite a bit smaller.  At some point
I'll continue back filling the archives collection thru last year, but
its not a process that lends itself to automation (due to my disperate
storage and logging methods).

>> B)  Should the list be echoed (one way) to a newsgroup?  If it is
>> echoed to a newsgroup should that group be a private group on a
>> private newsserver, or should I create a moderated alt.mud.development
>> group?

>If time is a concern I wouldn't recommend creating a moderated
>newsgroup. You would have to read all posts to be able to approve
>them and handle the normal email traffic as well (like people
>demanding to know why their post hasn't shown up on the list).

The entire intention of a moderated group would be to flatly refuse
all postings to the group.  The group would only be for echoing of the
list traffic.  If others wanted to join in the discussions on the list
based on what they read in the group, they'd need to join the list

>> D) How should the list be publicised?  As part of this can the current
>> list invitation be extended as the publicity banner, and if so, how
>> should it be modified?  (Hey, Keegan!  How about that invitation
>> update for the introduction message!)
>Do you want the list publicised or do you want new members? 


>latter can more easily be achieved by starting a development oriented
>discussion on the newsgroup and see who responds to that. If a
>reaction makes sense and is contributing rather than flaming in
>nature you can invite the writer of that post.

This is the method I currently use to find new members.  I regularly
scan the groups and invite anyone I think would make a valuable
member.  FWLIW that's how I came to invite you Marian...

>> E) How should new membership be handled?
>>   Possible membership options:
>>     1) Publicise the list but only allow membership by application. 
>> ie New members would have to apply, stating *why* they should be
>> considered as members.  These applications would be posted to the list
>> as well as my decisions on them.  (I'm not fond of this approach for
>> the overhead it puts on me).

>I don't think it will work very well anyway. People who want to be
>member of this list aren't necessarily people you want as a member.

Good point.  However having the membership base of the list dependant
on the members proactively inviting new people does not seem effective
to date.  Of the current membership (say 50), only about a dozen were
not personally invited by me.  More interestingly, the vast majority
(guestimate) of the current active membership (ie regular high signal
posters) were invited by me as vs other members (yes, there are
exceptions).  This is not to suggest that I either have a midas touch,
or that I somehow have special insight into what would make a good
list member -- I think its purely due to the fact that I've sent out
far more invitations than the rest of the list combined.

<<No, this doesn't mean that I'm asking for an invitation storm. 
However I do expect members as a matter of course to invite anyone
they know who would make a good member>>

>I'm not trying to sound elitist here but I too have read the
>discussions on r.g.m.* Almost everybody who participated in those
>discussions in a open and meaningfull manner I've seen writing on
>this list too. 

Yup.  There's a reason that's true.  The r.g.m.* groups are my main
hunting grounds for new members.  

>There's also quite a few who can't seem to open up to
>different opinions and feel the need to flame/write derogatory about

Quite.  Not wanted here.  The more interesting (from a list
perspective) problems are the ones like Reese who are able to offer
high signal rates, but also get involved in mass noise attacks.

>>     5) Something else?

>I would recommend requiring a little more active cooperation from the
>members of this list. If you start a subject you also become
>responsible for it. This means that you have to provide a summary of
>the discussion on the archive site (should there be one). Summaries
>are more easily accessible and can be used to cut out debates that
>have been held on the list before. Or if somebody thinks of a new
>angle for an old subject she can refer to the summary.

Excellant idea.  I don't think it would be wise to mandate such, but
I'm definitely up for actievly encouraging it (especially once I get
the web site up and running).

>Of course behind the summaries there should be the original posts
>available as well so if there is doubt about the conclusions in the
>summary there is still access to the literal text.

The archives should handle that.

>If there's enough interest and
>the whole thing doesn't grow too big I'll offer space on my own site,
>which already has information about (roleplaying) game design. 

I have the diskspace (I've got another 20Gig sitting unused), I'm just
lacking a good fast connection.  That is being worked on, but is
unlikely to resolve soon.  Aside: One of the side features I'm
thinking offering is web hosting for MUD pages by list members.  Of
course the connection speed (currently 28.8) doesn't help here.

>> Note:  None of this means that the list will become a flame-fest or a
>> counter part to the r.g.m.* newsgroups.  I would continue to actively
>> moderate the list.  Only the publicity and subscription methods of the
>> list would change.  

>The more open the list becomes the harder it will be to moderate it,
>up to the point you will have to approve posts -before- they reach
>the list.

Note: we're dealing with two contextual definitions of "moderation"
here.  I currently moderate this list with my various postings as list
owner, direct emal etc.  Traditionally list moderation is defined as
requiring the moderator to individually approve every posting to the
list before it gets posted.  The text below uses this latter,
traditional definition.

One thing I can do trivially is to make the list unmoderated for all
members who have been members for at least (say) a month, and have the
list moderated for all less-than-a-month-old members.  This would
allow a probation period for new members.  (I could also make the
probation period not time based, but explicit, so that I manually
promote certain members to unmoderated status)  

I have a many more tools available to me as list owner with this list
than most.

>I'm not that concerned about the incidental flames but about the
>general noise level. 

Ditto, tho I also have a low flame tolerance.

J C Lawrence                           Internet: claw at null.net
(Contractor)                           Internet: coder at ibm.net
---------------(*)               Internet: clawrenc at cup.hp.com
...Honorary Member Clan McFUD -- Teamer's Avenging Monolith...

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