Re: Hopefully the last message

Robert J. Bradbury (
Fri, 20 Aug 1999 20:37:05 -0700 (PDT)

On Fri, 20 Aug 1999 wrote:

> I think if you look at the archived messages below, it is pretty clear
> that the extropians list was in fact subscribed to the newbeginningskingdom
> egroup:

We don't know that for certain. [Since we never saw the original egroups subscribe list and don't have the source for the software to know exactly how it works!] "You have been added to the ... group" may simply mean that we were suggested as a "potential" subscriber.

I will agree that it is possible we were subscribed (some have indicated that their experience with such lists argues that), but we never received any messages from eGroups (to my knowledge) other than the original invitation. It is the rapid escalation that occured after a single invitation that I consider fairly unextropian.

> My thought at the time was that someone was trying to play a little prank
> and/or stir up trouble, subscribing the notoriously atheistic and
> Extropians to what sounds like some kind of New Age religious group.

If a person does something to stir up trouble, then we should be particularly on our guard not to overboard. If you think we have got people baiting us now, it is likely to get much worse as the organization becomes better known.

> Here are the messages which have egroups in the title, and IMO the response
> by extropians was entirely mild and appropriate, at least initially.
I have to disagree.

> (measured response)

Accusing someone of "harassment" and "theft" and suggesting "punitive action"

is a little more than what I would call "measured".

The other "flames" go even further. There were several private responses in my part in attempts to mediate the positions and provide some education.

I think we may forget that not everyone we encounter has 25 years of experience on the Internet. From time to time someone who doesn't know Netetiquette is going to appear and IMO we should try to respond to those situations a little more gracefully.

A long time ago I learned an approach that goes something like this: (1) The first time something happens, it may be a random occurence.

      You should look at it carefully to determine whether it is good
      or bad, represents a threat or not and raise your awareness
      regarding the conditions in which it occured.
  (2) The second time something happens, there is a good chance that
      there is an underlying habit or law involved and if the
      thing is a threat or undesirable you should work aggressively
      to prevent it from happening again.
  (3) The third time something happens it *is* a recurring activity
      following a "law" and if you don't like it or want it you
      should do everything in your power to wipe it out.

I would suggest that the flames were generated around level 1 when they should have occured someplace between 2 & 3.

After all the noise, I'm giving some consideration to joining Anders in that distant unused corner of the Galaxy waiting for the "Sandberg Era" which is likely to arrive quite quickly after SIs derived from a subset of the extropian list subscribers have finished throwing all the stars at each other. :-)