Re: [Last-Call] Last Call: BCP 83 PR-Action Against Dan Harkins

Keith Moore <> Sun, 02 October 2022 20:02 UTC

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To: Ted Lemon <>
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From: Keith Moore <>
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Subject: Re: [Last-Call] Last Call: BCP 83 PR-Action Against Dan Harkins
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On 10/2/22 15:08, Ted Lemon wrote:

> This is essentially an argument in favor of spam. That we don’t need 
> to and shouldn’t prevent spam, because people are just expressing 
> their points of view. A nice principle, but in practice it doesn’t scale.
> In practice, spam is very harmful, even when it’s well intentioned. If 
> I talk loudly enough and often enough, that serves to prevent those 
> who don’t have time to wade through my speech or are traumatized by it 
> from participating. It results in filters being created that mostly 
> filter me out, and in the process also filter others out as a side effect.

I don't think I'm arguing in favor of spam.   The usual problem of spam 
is not that the content is objectionable (though that certainly can 
happen and has happened) but that the sheer volume of completely 
irrelevant messages obscures legitimate messages. I don't think Dan is 
being accused of overwhelming IETF lists with excessive volume of 
irrelevant messages.

> This is a very hard problem, as we all know, but noticing that someone 
> lacks the ability to self-moderate—to be considerate of other 
> participants with whom they disagree—and moderating them is definitely 
> worthwhile. Communities that don’t do this die.
> Do we really want all the work we’ve done here to fade into obscurity 
> because the organization is so toxic that it dies with us?  I don’t 
> want that. I hope you don’t either. That is what is at stake.

To me what is toxic is the intolerance of the expression of alternative