Rather than complain about the quality of the list (which certainly varies over time, whatever your standards or interests), why not offer constructive suggestions?
We are currently considering the workability and details of having a moderated list. NOW--*before* we implement this--is the time to suggest creative possibilities for improving the quality. The NodeNet idea was one attempt to deal with it, but so far has not worked out.
Let's hear some creative intelligence at work. How can we have high quality, informative communications while maintaining a community? I have already suggested a group of bulletin boards lists, which would be more focused and where off-topic posts would be excluded (but would find a home on a cousin list). I still think this could work if we had the resources to commit (my model is the Motley Fool's message Boards, including their "My Fool" feature that allows customization). I would be delighted to see someone take on the research into this--what software is available for a simple system, how much admin it requires, cost, etc.
Moderation is an obvious possibility, but requires work on the part of one or more people.
More strict enforcement of more defined list rules is another possibility.
Simply breaking the list up into special purpose lists is another, perhaps with an "Extropians-Chat" or "Extropians-Social" list for general community discussions unrelated to particular topics.
Certainly the list as it currenty functions is not something I particularly want to show off to intelligent, mature, potential extropians. There is some excellent content here, but it's buried under piles of low value verbiage.
So, again, let's hear some creative suggestions, taking into account ExI's limited resources. Comments on the above possibilities or entirely different ideas welcomed!
Implications of Advanced Technologies
President, Extropy Institute: http://www.extropy.org EXTRO 4 Conference: Biotech Futures. See http://www.extropy.org/ex4/e4main.htm