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pornography : me again

Cathy Quinones quinones at orchid.UCSC.EDU
Mon Jan 31 14:05:55 EST 1994

In article <2iiqdn$ihj at mserv1.dl.ac.uk> frederic at engpub1.bu.edu (Tonya Frederic) writes:
>First I'd like to respond to Cathy Quinones and then I have some information
>regarding this incident for anyone interested.
>Cathy wrote:
>>Wow, you seem to be awfully preoccupied with what "Mike" keeps in his
>>directories.  I think that if he's been granted permission to have an account,
>>and permission to use the said account, he has the right to protect
>>whatever files he has in there, except for those that need to be accessed
>>by other users.                                       ^^^^
>In this research group we commonly use programs and files that belong
>to others in the group, and if someone is not around it is accepted that 
>people can go looking for something they need among his/her directories.
>On one of these occasions when I was looking for a program he said I could
>get from him, I discovered that I was unable to do so because he suddenly 
>had protected all of his directories.  Of course if one of us has something
>we don't want the others to read we protect it, and of course that is our
>right.  It was merely an observation consistent with the fact that he was
>obtaining pornographic pictures from certain news groups.

Personally, I prefer keeping my files protected (there's nothing in my
directories that anyone would need, and I'm semi-embarassed to admit most
of the stuff in my directories consists of recipies and pet-care

 > >
>>Just to play devil's advocate, how do you define pornography?  Would it
>>be ok to you if your officemate were to read sex-related newsgroups when
>>there is a chance you may stand behind him and accidentally read what he
>>has on the screen?  If not, then you should demand that your advisor just
>>ban all non work-related use of this computer (as people's definitions of
>>"unacceptable use of research equipment" may vary).  
>What people read and look at is their own business when it's in private.
>I'm certainly not going to strain my eyes to try to read what's on his
>computer screen, so reading sex related newsgroups probably has to be
>considered a private thing.  However, when I walk around the corner and
>there's a big color porno picture staring me in the face, I don't think
>it's unreasonable to voice my distaste and ask that such things not go
>on in a workplace.   
>I am fairly certain that my advisor would object to these machines being 
>used to view either written or pictorial pornography, but I am not going
>to bring it to his attention unless this continues to occur.  "Mike" is
>or will be aware that I object and that action will be taken if it happens
>again because he reads this newsgroup.  I had actually already decided
>how best to handle this before writing the first time, namely by writing
>a letter to this group describing the incidents and the actions I was
>considering taking.  I hope it made him squirm and I hope that some of
>the supportive responses I received made him understand that I'm not the 
>only woman (or man, for that matter) who considers this a serious issue.  
>Thank you all for your advice.  I was not really sure myself whether 
>others would take this seriously or consider me to be overreacting.

I wasn't trying to diminish the annoyance of being forced to deal with 
this type of crap in the workplace.  My point was that a much more direct
approach (vastly less time consuming) would be to tell the person that the
pictures were offensive, and one more "flash" would make you go and raise
major hell (as opposed to the "public embarassment" campaign you were
considering launching).  The thing I was most worried about was that
people resent public embarassment (however well deserved) and dealing with
things privately (yet ruthlessly and efficiently) would be better than
starting what could be a long-time feud.  

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