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ETIQUETTE: Re: Mis-Posting

Greetings unto Cheapside from Branwynn Ottersby, who understood
the gentleman's question a bit differently from the learned Earl.

On Mon, 24 Jun 1996 kuijt@umiacs.UMD.EDU responded to this
part of Lyon's letter:

> >I have never agreed with the idea that you cannot quote someone's e-mail
> >message to you. [...]
> >
> >If it is addressed to ME, not a list, not posted as publication, then
> >once it's in my mailbox, it's mine.

In another portion of his letter, Lyon writes
"It seems I inadvertantly posted something to this list that was
meant for the Alairians..." (any transcription errors are mine)

His Excellency's reply includes:
> This is simple courtesy.  You treat a private conversation as a private
> conversation, whether it is email or voice.  Which means that it is
> _always_ discourteous to broadcast a private message, regardless of the
> content.  If the content is inflammatory it has other disadvantages,
> but it is always discourteous even when the content is innocuous.
> You should always assume that if the sender had wanted to make the message
> public, he would have, and for reasons of his own he sent you a message
> in private instead.  You should respect his reasons, even if you do not
> know them.  If you wish to repost a private message, you should _always_
> ask permission first, and only do it if you get that permission.

I don't think the letter from Xavier was intended for public posting --
that was a mistake that Lyon apologized for. From what he said, he
intended to show it to some of his Alairian friends (which are a very
small subset of our public, you must admit -- in fact, there seems
to be only one in the intersection of the two groups).

Now, if Lyon means to the extreme of arrogance that anything I
write him is his to post in public (the forum to which we are
commonly subscribed), no matter the nature of the post or the
public, or how the public image I have crafted in that public
might be altered by having the private post made public, then
I would have similar feelings as Earl Dafydd as to the courtesy 
of such an attitude... and would never share anything intimate 
with that person.

However, if Lyon means what he said in the way *I* took it, which is
"Is it a breach of etiquette to show something cool that was written
to me to some of my friends?" My answer would be "not if use your best
judgment" -- if it is obviously something intimate and gushy or
in some other way would cause the writer to be held up to the
ridicule of those with whom you share the letter, I'd say resist
the urge. But if it is something that can only cause good will to
happen, I'd say go for it -- the most important factor in this
situation is how much you trust the person/s with whom you are
sharing the letter. 

If I am sure that sharing a letter that someone has written me
will not adversely change the image of the writer held by my
friends with whom I want to share it, and I have some good reason 
to share it, I have never felt a twinge of guilt in doing so
without asking permission first. And that seems to be how other
people in my world operate as well -- maybe we just need 
correction by all the rest of you who have NEVER shared ANY
private mail you've ever received: please enlighten me.

And if you are now thinking: WOW! I'm not sure I like having to
trust her judgment on things I send her way -- multiply that
thought by the thousands of people with whom you have interacted
in your life (if you think the people in my world share
written things too easily, you should HEAR how much conversation
is repeated!)...and then let it go, because you've been trusting
us all along. (Or don't talk to me anymore; your choice! ;^)

This personal opinion has been brought to you by
branwynn otterspur
klosky@ucar.edu (for all you differently-headered folks :^)
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