Re: [NTLK] Fighting Complacency within the Newton Community

From: Matthew Surles <>
Date: Sun Jul 30 2006 - 18:21:45 EDT

First, I admit, I'm largely a lurker. I've lusted over Newtons since
the OMP came out when I was a high school junior or sophmore (can't
remember ;) ), and bought my first Newton (a 130) in 1999. This list
has been a great asset to me over the years, mostly by simply
following along the discussion and reading the archives.

I subscribe to two other mailing lists, and am working on a PhD. I
simply don't have a lot of extra time, which has largely influenced my
reaction to this idea. My feelings are, that while this a
well-intentioned idea, it would actually harm the Newton community, or
at least the way in which the Newton community is perceived in the
outside world.. Here's my thoughts:

Someone buys a Newton on ePay (or anywhere else, for that matter), and
needs some help getting it working. They are a complete nOOb, and
know less than bupkis about all things Green. If they run into a
problem that cannot be answered via the Wiki, then where are they
going to turn if NewtonTalk is "closed"? It may take quite a while
before they can answer questions themselves; are they to be turned
away until they've become proficient enough?

As developers and power users move away from the Newton, wouldn't you
rather them lurk on NewtonTalk "just in case" someone needs technical
advice, rather than turn them away, just because they no longer use
the Newton?

Wouldn't REQUIRING people to post just increase the number of useless
posts? If someone has something useful to add, or a question to ask,
just once a year, isn't that more useful, even if they lurk for the
other 51 weeks in the year?

If every mailing list required people to participate, than I would bet
that the overwhelming majority of mailing lists would be reduced by
80%. I have a feeling that most people in mailing lists lurk, simply
because there just isn't enough time in the day to participate in
forums, IRC, mailing lists, RSS feeds, email, instant messaging, and
actually get up from the computer and have a healthy offline life.

Just my $0.02; take with a grain of salt and all that...
-matthew surles

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Received on Sun Jul 30 18:23:17 2006

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