[stella] the problem with mailing lists

Subject: [stella] the problem with mailing lists
From: Glenn Saunders <mos6507@xxxxxxxxx>
Date: Wed, 24 Aug 2005 13:46:40 -0400
There are problems with mailing lists as a technology.

The problem is there is no subgrouping within
Stellalist.  You can't partition stellalist into a
bBasic and ASM subgroup.  You'd have to have seperate
lists which is clunky.

You CAN with forums.

Also, it's the nature of the beast that when you get
sent every message that gets posted to the list, you
can fall into this feedback loop where everyone on the
list starts to complain at the same time.  Then people
complain about the fact that people are complaining,
and people complain about the fact that people are
complaining about people complaining.  It explodes
like a freakin atomic bomb!!  I've seen this happen
more times than I can count.

This is a problem with the slightly delayed nature of
email.  With a forum, it's all centrally stored in one
database so it's harder for that to happen.  And you
can lock threads that get out of hand.

The big advantage to mailing lists is the immediate
no-hands-on-the-wheel nature of message delivery.

Personally, I think RSS is going a long way to solving
that problem, even though that's currently a one-way

If you want to post a reply you can always have a
comment link in the RSS message.

Right now, for instance, I've subscribed to all the
developer blogs on AtariAge via RSS.

What I don't like about forums is the tediousness of
manually navigating to the forums and seeking forward
to where the new posts are.  I think Atari Age's forum
software is getting better at providing shortcuts to
speed up the process of continuing your reading to
where you left off, but it will never be as convenient
as a linear mailing list or RSS feed streaming in.

So my opinion is that we should not attempt to replace
Stellalist with another mailing-list-only solution but
to offer a mailing-list or RSS gateway for the AA

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