Mailing list

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ProjectVRM has an active mailing list of more than 600 participants. You can see the archive and subscribe here. Because the archive is exposed on the Web, it is public. Bear this in mind when you post to the list.

Our main frame is VRM. But subjects can be anything.

On the subject of etiquette, there is lots of good guidance in the world. Nearly all of it is for (and by) organizations that provide many more rules than we have here, and they are all worth reading. Here is ours:

  1. Seek first to understand, and then to be understood. (Thank you, Stephen Covey. Note that all of what Covey covers in his "7 habits are good advice for mailing lists.)
  2. Don't characterize other people. Nobody likes to be called anything, even if what they are called is accurate. Implicit in any characterization is reduction to a label, or something less than the whole person each of us are. We are all more and other than than any characterization. Being characterized nearly always makes people defensive. And once we start defending ourselves from characterization, the conversation goes sideways to the characterization itself and away from whatever the real subject was in the first place.
  3. Don't use "you" statements. These put people on the defensive as well.
  4. Don't flame. This includes baiting. It's a subtle thing. Usually it's saying something you know is going to piss people off. We've had relatively little of this; but it's still worth bringing up.
  5. Write in plain text. If there is not need to format what you write (e.g. bold, italic, links, bulleted or numbered lists), writing in plain text assures that what you write won't be hard for others to read. There are so many ways that formatted (aka "rich") text in one mail client will look wrong in another (e.g. looking too small, or failing to wrap), and only one way that is always easy to read. That way is plain text. Sadly, all major email clients today (e.g. Apple's Mail, Gmail, Outlook) default to "rich" text. But it's worth setting up your email to default to plain text, and switching to rich text when you need it. Find out how to toggle those, and you'll make life easier for yourself and everybody else.