Re: Stupidlity and rudeness on the list [Was:Re: Image of extropianism and tran
Mon, 10 Aug 1998 09:36:21 EDT

Let me throw my somewhat belated $.02 in here with a few thoughts and comments:

  1. PLEASE remember before you post that this list is archived on the web. Curious and potentially valuable new members of the transhumanist community often browse the web archive before making a decision to become more actively involved in transhumanist and extropian discussions and activities. Because of our evolved sexuality (more about which below), any thread title containing the character string "hot babes" is likely to attract disproportionate attention. Imagine the impact that such a title has on the perceptions of the people who may be inclined to CRITICIZE transhumanism and extropianism. And for you young men at the entry level of the mating market, consider the impact that such a thread title might have on the very women you would like to attract into extropianism...
  2. Related to the above is the observation that this list is "open", in the sense that all are welcome to come have a seat in our cyberspace salon, listen and contribute. However, PLEASE bear in mind that a text list such as this offers extremely low bandwidth for assessing the social sensibilities of other participants. We primates are first and foremost social beings and we are fundamentally visual and auditory beings, exquisitely evolved to send and receive signals about social receptivity and rejection. Before posting about a subject as delicate as sexuality, consider that you may well not know your audience very well. Would you say whatever you are about to post in a room full of strangers? If not, it may not be appropriate.
  3. We've had similar discussions before. The relatively low number of women in our ranks is lamentable, but can be remedied. We are a very young cultural milieu, still very much in the process of synthesizing a world-view from the best of what has gone before and the best of our vision of what is and should come in the future. In the spirit of dynamic optimism, let us work together to include as many people as can profitably contribute to the transhumanist agenda. In this endeavor, consider that one of our most powerful tools is DIPLOMACY. Diplomatic skills take time to develop. Consider this list as a place to hone those skills in a positive environment.
  4. For you young men who may be frustrated by the paucity of feminine company in the hard sciences, I highly recommend a book by Howard Buss called "The Evolution of Desire: Strategies of Human Mating" which contains a remarkable empirical analysis of human sexuality in the context of evolutionary psychology. This is one of the three or four most recommended books in my library.
	Greg Burch     <>----<>
	   Attorney  :::  Director, Extropy Institute  :::  Wilderness Guide   -or-

"Good ideas are not adopted automatically. They must
be driven into practice with courageous impatience."