incubator-general mailing list archives

Site index · List index
Message view « Date » · « Thread »
Top « Date » · « Thread »
From Marvin Humphrey <>
Subject Bulldozing (was TL;DR editors)
Date Tue, 09 Apr 2013 14:31:45 GMT
On Tue, Apr 9, 2013 at 6:15 AM, Alan Cabrera <> wrote:
> The amount of email on this list has grown beyond ridiculousness.

> Thoughts?

We'd be fine if it weren't for a small number of participants "bulldozing" --
dominating a discussion by sheer volume of email.

IMO, it's time to enshrine this advice from Doug on the "email tips" page at

    Please do not feel obliged to answer every response to your messages here.
    That does not scale well. There are a lot of people who read this list.
    Each message sent is equivalent to taking the floor in a meeting with all
    of these people in the room. Please pause to consider that before
    responding or folks will start to leave this room.

    A best practice on a list with this many members is to respond
    thoughtfully on each thread just once per day. Try to keep your responses
    short, sticking to the points which are most important to you. Then wait,
    giving folks who might only read the list once a day a chance to respond
    to each of your messages.  Use this time to gauge the general response of
    the community. Then try to respond to the list as a whole rather than
    individually to each member of the list.

It would be an interesting experiment to run general@ on a listserv
which throttled authors to one email per thread per day. :)

Or to create a "bulldozer detector" tool which parses an mbox and prints
summary data for each thread:

*   authors ranked by message count
*   authors ranked by word count

Marvin Humphrey

To unsubscribe, e-mail:
For additional commands, e-mail:

View raw message