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Re: Discussion Formalities
>I hope the fight between two people (now:5) won't
>expand any further. I really hope so. I hope Doctor
>Quarterman will take it over now and fix the
>discussions (if you can).
Actually, I don't have a Ph.D., so I'm not a Doctor.
Anyway, to the topic at hand.
The Internet is large and varied. People new to discussion
lists may not be familiar with long-established conventions.
One of them is that mail sent to private addresses is different
from mail sent to public lists, and that forwarding private mail
to a public list is a major violation of etiquette.
Perhaps there are lists where such bad manners are normal.
But this isn't the list for that.
All of you know already that personal attacks are not permitted
on this list.
Numerous people have asked that the recent spate of contention stop.
Yet it continues. People are unsubscribing because of it.
I have been asked by several people to act.
In the past day I have taken two people off the list.
I remind you all of the terms of subscription to this list, which are
included in the introductory information that all of you have seen,
and which I repost here below. The same information is visible at any
time through the web as
May I suggest that we return to civil conversation on interesting topics.
John S. Quarterman <email@example.com>
Sinclair Discussion List
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The only exceptions are messages which are too long, which bounce
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But, in general, once you send it to the list, it goes to the list.
Computers do all the work. Nobody intervenes. It's gone. It can't be
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Think before you post. Consider who you intend your message for.
=>> Look at your To: header <<=
to see who it will go to.
See also the web pages Margaret has prepared about plain text
electronic mail, sinclair.quarterman.org/mail/. As a subscriber said:
``It appears that you have unwittingly learned the beauty of this list
-- post and they will respond!''
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Whenever anyone sends a message to the list, firstname.lastname@example.org,
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email@example.com. This way list subscribers can discuss topics
of interest to the list.
Topics to Post to this List
The topics that are of interest to the list are determined by the
discussion in the list. Possible topics may include, but are not
* Sinclair family history,
* Sinclair genealogy,
* Sinclair organizations,
* Sinclair families.
* Notable Sinclair people.
* Sinclair pictures.
* Related publications.
* Events that Sinclairs are likely to attend, such as
* The 600th anniversary celebration of Prince Henry
* Places Sinclairs came from, such as Roslin, Caithness,
Orkney, Shetland, Argyll, England, Normandy,
* Information about religion can be helpful in determining where
or when to search for an ancestor.
I would like to encourage list subscribers to copy (Cc:
firstname.lastname@example.org) answers to such questions to the list, rather
than responding only to the person who asked the question. That way,
other interested parties on the list may find additional information.
Topics not to post to this list:
Certain topics are forbidden on this list.
* Do not send virus reports to this list (see below).
* Do not send chain letters to this list.
* Do not post lengthy excerpts (more than 50 words) from copyrighted
material that is less than 50 years old.
* Do not use this list to try to convert someone to your religion.
* Discussion concerning the immediate ancestors of living people is
not welcomed if it would discomfit the living.
* Subscribers use this list to discuss both genealogy and history;
arguments about which should predominate are fruitless.
* If you want to send pictures for all on the list to see, it is
often better to send them to the maintainer of the web pages
rather than posting them to the list.
* Even better, post your pictures in your own web pages and post the
URL to the list.
The list is archived, and the archives are available online. The
archives are searchable via
kingcrest.com/Sinclair/dList_Search.cfm, courtesy Paul
Sinclair. The archives are also available to list members through
Majordomo; for how, send mail to email@example.com with the
word "help" in the body (not subject) of the message.
Paul has also set up a GuestBook,
kingcrest.com/Sinclair/Guestbook.cfm, and he has arranged that entries
in the guestbook are forwarded automatically to the list. He has even
arranged for replies to guestbook entries on the list to be
automatically forwarded to the person who made the original entry.
There are numerous online compilations of etiquette guidelines, such
as for example:
Here is a compilation of etiquette guidelines that takes into account
various topics that have come up on this list.
The list is what you, the list subscribers, make of it, and in order
for you to make anything of it we must all get along.
* Be civil to members of this list.
* Never attribute to malice what can be adequately explained by
ignorance or unfamiliarity with the customs of the clan or of the
list or by bugs in electronic mail programs.
* Never assume a posting is a personal attack on you or slight
against you unless you're directly named the affront is specific
and unambiguous; and even then sleep on it first.
* Just because a mail message is brief that doesn't mean the writer
is being curt or insulting. Electronic mail has its own style,
which is not the same as face-to-face talking, the telephone, or
paper mail; brevity is the soul of clarity in electronic mail. Not
to mention that people often write electronic mail in haste, or
with two fingers.
* Remember that everyone's opinion is valid as an opinion, even if
you disagree with it, think it's stupid, and have facts at your
disposal that can demolish it. If you disagree about what you are
reading please do it in a polite manner.
* Ad hominem attacks (personal attacks) are not permitted on this
* Threats of bodily harm even off the list are not permitted by list
members against list members even off the list, and if evidence is
presented to the list owner of same, the person who sent them will
be removed from the list.
* Everyone makes spelling mistakes from time to time; there's
usually no need to remark on them in the list.
Spelling, Quoting, HTML, and CAPS
* If you use a spell checker on your postings, you won't risk
* Use the Subject: line to really tell what your message is about,
don't just use the previous subject line that might not be
* Quoting enough of a previous message for context is good.
* Quoting all of one or more previous messages is usually not good,
because it requires the readers to wade through old material
again. Trim quotations and old headers. Preserve only what is
needed for context for your new information.
* When it comes to mailing lists, HTML can cause a lot of problems.
Not everyone has the newest software; not all email programs can
read HTML; and the HTML sent by many mail programs is not very
good anyway. So, if you're on a mailing list, it helps to make
sure that your email is going out in a fashion that everyone can
read, and that means plain text electronic mail,
* Please DO NOT SEND MESSAGES IN ALL CAPS; people will think you're
* Similarly, don't end every question in multiple question marks???
It makes you look like an idiot??? And don't end every sentence in
multiple exclamation marks!!! It makes you look like a shouting
idiot!!! You may think it's cute and expressive, but it will cause
many people to ignore you entirely.
Etiquette for posting genealogical information to this list:
* Do some background reading on the web pages, especially the ones
on genealogy, which include links to many related web servers
* Join a clan organization so you will get a clan newsletter.
* It is best to post a genealogical query to the entire list,
because it is impossible to predict who among the many subscribers
may know something about your query.
* When you post your query, tell us all you can about dates or
approximate dates of your oldest ancestor, where they lived and
who they married. Include county names whenever you can. We hope
to be able to search on locality one day and having county names
will help to link up people.
* Keep trying periodically. The person that could help you with your
search might not not be able to answer you immediately or they
might not yet be a subscriber to the list.
* Also enter yourself in the web form GuestBook, courtesy
* Please don't just listen in and not let us know your information.
You very likely have something important to share with others.
Etiquette for posting historical information to this list:
* Do some background reading on the web pages, such as those on
history, the FAQ, and the Sinclair 2000 gathering.
* Join a clan organization so you will get a clan newsletter.
* Be careful with copyrighted information.
* Cite your sources.
* Speak up! Your historical tidbit may be just as fascinating as
anything about a famous historical personage.
Don't be afraid to ask; we're all learning here.
Do not send virus reports to this list. Most virus reports turn out to
be hoaxes, so forwarding a virus report without examination is like
shouting fire in a crowded theater. To find out which are real and
which are hoaxes, myths, and urban legends, try these URLs. But do not
send virus reports to this list.
real viruses http://www.datafellows.com/virus-info/
more hoaxes http://ciac.llnl.gov/ciac/CIACHoaxes.html
urban legends http://www.urbanlegends.com/
Related Web Pages
Much related information may be found in
* the Clan Sinclair web pages, sinclair.quarterman.org/,
* in Paul Sinclair's history and genealogy pages,
* in the Clan Sinclair Trust web pages www.clansinclair.org/,
* and in the Clan Sinclair Association U.S.A. web pages,
or through the many links they contain.
The list maintainer is John Sinclair Quarterman (jsq). Please
note, once again, that what gets discussed in the list is determined
by the members of the list. I am not a moderator; I do not decide what
gets posted or not. I merely set up and maintain the mechanics of the
list. The content of the list is up to you, the subscribers.
>From the List to the Web Pages
[Clan Sinclair] Messages posted to this list often find their way
into the Clan Sinclair web pages, sinclair.quarterman.org/. In
fact, the great majority of the material in those web pages came from
the list. The web page maintainer asks permission before using
material in the web pages, with the exception of brief anonymous
excerpts for use in the comments about the list and the
comments about the web pages.
[ This is the Sinclair family discussion list, firstname.lastname@example.org
[ To get off or on the list, see http://sinclair.quarterman.org/list.html