Re: PowerPoint considered harmful (was Re: Barely literate minutes)

"Joel M. Halpern" <> Sun, 02 December 2012 17:19 UTC

Return-Path: <>
Received: from localhost (localhost []) by (Postfix) with ESMTP id B517B21F85B4 for <>; Sun, 2 Dec 2012 09:19:56 -0800 (PST)
X-Virus-Scanned: amavisd-new at
X-Spam-Flag: NO
X-Spam-Score: -102.551
X-Spam-Status: No, score=-102.551 tagged_above=-999 required=5 tests=[AWL=-0.286, BAYES_00=-2.599, IP_NOT_FRIENDLY=0.334, USER_IN_WHITELIST=-100]
Received: from ([]) by localhost ( []) (amavisd-new, port 10024) with ESMTP id VnlR4tZ76u4f for <>; Sun, 2 Dec 2012 09:19:56 -0800 (PST)
Received: from ( []) by (Postfix) with ESMTP id 247F021F85FF for <>; Sun, 2 Dec 2012 09:19:55 -0800 (PST)
Received: from ( []) by (Postfix) with ESMTP id 081DFA6814 for <>; Sun, 2 Dec 2012 09:19:53 -0800 (PST)
Received: from localhost (localhost []) by (Postfix) with ESMTP id 87FA61C0D1A; Sun, 2 Dec 2012 09:19:51 -0800 (PST)
X-Virus-Scanned: Debian amavisd-new at
Received: from [] ( []) (using TLSv1 with cipher DHE-RSA-AES256-SHA (256/256 bits)) (No client certificate requested) by (Postfix) with ESMTPSA id 7F8071C07B5; Sun, 2 Dec 2012 09:19:48 -0800 (PST)
Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 02 Dec 2012 12:19:36 -0500
From: "Joel M. Halpern" <>
User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; rv:17.0) Gecko/17.0 Thunderbird/17.0
MIME-Version: 1.0
To: Keith Moore <>
Subject: Re: PowerPoint considered harmful (was Re: Barely literate minutes)
References: <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <00c001cdce7a$d9fa6490$8def2db0$> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <> <>
In-Reply-To: <>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="ISO-8859-1"; format="flowed"
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
Cc: John C Klensin <>, Randall Gellens <>,
X-Mailman-Version: 2.1.12
Precedence: list
List-Id: IETF-Discussion <>
List-Unsubscribe: <>, <>
List-Archive: <>
List-Post: <>
List-Help: <>
List-Subscribe: <>, <>
X-List-Received-Date: Sun, 02 Dec 2012 17:19:57 -0000

There is another unfortunate community habit that I have noticed.
It is, I believe, a consequence o their being simply too much stuff to 
look at.

If you have a working group that is considering new ideas (looking to 
recharter), you are more likely to get folks to read the draft, either 
before or shortly after the meeting, if you get a presentation slot in 
the meeting.  In particular, if the presentation sounds interesting, he 
odds of readership go up.

This is not discussion.  The odds of getting much discussion if the idea 
is competent are pretty low.  (I am putting aside the useful result 
where the participants go to the mike and bash the idea hard.  That at 
least is discussion, even if not the discussion the presenter wanted.) 
But it seems to be one of the few ways we have to get folks to pay 


On 12/2/2012 10:12 AM, Keith Moore wrote:
> On 12/02/2012 10:03 AM, John C Klensin wrote:
>> --On Sunday, December 02, 2012 09:53 -0500 Keith Moore
>> <> wrote:
>>> ...
>>> (Another way to put is that even if we provide such cameras in
>>> meetings along with colored pens and paper, we will continue
>>> to see PowerPoint being used as it is today unless there's a
>>> community-wide effort to change our entrenched habits.)
>> Sure.  But it is the now-entrenched habits that are the problem.
>> The overuse of PowerPoint for purposes of which neither of us
>> approve is merely a symptom, not, IMO, a cause (even if it
>> reinforces the behaviors).
> Agreed, though sometimes when changing habits it helps to focus
> attention on the most visible or tangible part of the habit.
> It's always been possible, and will presumably remain possible, to build
> small PowerPoint decks that consist of only a few diagrams, to leave
> some blank slides in the middle of the deck for the purpose of typing in
> comments made at meetings, etc.  -- all for the purpose of facilitating
> discussion.  I wouldn't have a problem with PowerPoint being used in
> that way, though I suspect that it will be difficult for people to
> restrain themselves to using PowerPoint in that way as long as that's
> the tool that they're using.
>> Anyone for incorporating a slide (!) into the Newcomer's
>> Presentation (!!) that says "a presentation in a f2f meeting
>> that makes extensive use of PowerPoint decks with many and/or
>> dense slides brands the presenter as either a newcomer, someone
>> who is trying to avoid an actual discussion, or a fool"?   :-(
> Yes, but first we need to get existing WG chairs to say that to their
> participants, and to push back on people who continue to do use
> PowerPoint in that way in meetings.
> Keith