Rise and Fall of a mailing list

Sid Harth BAKULA at delphi.com
Sun Apr 2 02:53:53 UTC 1995

On  1-APR-1995 14:15:28.0 dbradley said to BAKULA

   > Salut,
   > Bon, c'est en anglais.....delete(voir#6b) si ca te deplait.

     I would like to share with you very insightful posting:


   > Every list seems to go through the same cycle:

   > 1.  Initial enthusiasm (people introduce themselves, and gush
   >     a lot about how wonderful it is to find kindred souls).

   > 2.  Evangelism (people moan about how few folks are posting to
   >     the list, and brainstorm recruitment strategies).

   > 3.  Growth (more and more people join, more and more lengthy
   >     threads develop, occasional off-topic threads pop up)

   > 4.  Community (lots of threads, some more relevant than others;
   >     lots of information and advice is exchanged; experts help other
   >     experts as well as less experienced colleagues; friendships
   >     develop; people tease each other; newcomers are welcomed with
   >     generosity and patience; everyone---newbie and expert alike---
   >     feels comfortable asking questions, suggesting answers, and
   >     sharing opinions)

   > 5.  Discomfort with diversity (the number of messages increases
   >     dramatically; not every thread is fascinating to every
   >     reader; people start complaining about the signal-to-noise
   >     ratio; person 1 threatens to quit if *other* people don't
   >     limit discussion to person 1's pet topic; person 2 agrees
   >     with person 1; person 3 tells 1 & 2 to lighten up; more
   >     bandwidth is wasted complaining about off-topic threads
   >     than is used for the threads themselves; everyone gets
   >     annoyed)

   > 6a. Smug complacency and stagnation (the purists flame everyone
   >     who asks an 'old' question or responds with humor to a serious
   >     post; newbies are rebuffed; traffic drops to a doze-producing
   >     level of a few minor issues; all interesting discussions happen
   >     by private email and are limited to a few participants; the
   >     purists spend lots of time self-righteously congratulating
   >     each other on keeping off-topic threads off the list)

   > OR

   > 6b. Maturity (a few people quit in a huff; the rest of the
   >     participants stay near stage 4, with stage 5 popping up briefly
   >     every few weeks; many people wear out their second or third
   >     'delete' key, but the list lives contentedly ever after)

          Thanks to:

   > ------------------------------
   > |\^/|      Diane Bradley
   > _|\|   |/|_   Langara College
   > \         /   100 West 49th Avenue
   > <____ ____>   Vancouver, B.C. V5Y 2Z6, Canada
   > |        email: dbradley at langara.bc.ca  voice:(604) 323-5261

Sid Harth

`[1;34;43mRainbow V 1.13.2 for Delphi - Registered

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