Date: Sat, 16 Sep 1995 00:28:34 -0400


Subject: length of postings

Robert Wachal wrote:

I get the ADS msgs in digest form, but I've stopped reading them because

of all the diatribes about "English only." If things don't calm down

soon, I'll probably quit the list. Yes, I know, I can go to NODIGEST and

then deal with screenfuls beclouding the stuff I want from other sources

as well as from ADS. I'd especially hate to miss Don Lance's thoughtful

comments and some others too.

I sympathize completely. In my mind, however, the problem is not the topic per

se--I think English only legislation, pro and con--is well within the

"charter" of ADS-L. Rather, the problem is the *length* of postings. For

example, in tonight's digest there were complete copies (at least, I think

they were complete, but I don't know, since I scrolled through them as quickly

as my modem connection will allow) of two pieces of proposed English only


Since there are clearly people on the list who are interested in such

things--the discussion clearly wouldn't be continuing if there weren't--can we

perhaps think of a way to shift the burden of such postings to those who *are*

interested from those of us who are seriously overwhelmed by them? I can think

of two ways to do this:

i) instead of posting something lengthy (say 100 lines), post a two

line summary, ending "email me if you want a copy".

ii) work out a way to link such things to the ADS web page, and

announce that they're there.

I think the first of these is preferable, since it wouldn't add to Natalie's

work load and it doesn't presuppose technological access and expertise beyond

what all ADS-L subscribers already have.

Perhaps some other subscribers can add to my suggestions. Note that I

*haven't* suggested that we convert ADS-L to something more like Linguist List

(moderated postings grouped together by topic [by an actual editor] and

circulated as much as 2 weeks after they're sent in); this option would

require a lot of volunteer work. And, in any case, another subscriber has

reminded me that one of the benefits of ADS-L is that any one of us can post a

question in the morning and have extensive feedback and response by the time

we go home for the evening (or the next morning, for us Digest readers).

Alice Faber