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?sci.bio.micro passed vote?

the End jgraham at bronze.ucs.indiana.edu
Mon Dec 5 16:03:45 EST 1994

Una is correct about the source of votes "for" sci.bio.microbiology.
>   (2) As can be seen in the bionet.general and bionet.microbiology
>   archives on net.bio.net, "all levels of interest" were neither
>   invited or welcome in bionet.microbiology at the time when either
>  group was proposed.  

Not so. All levels of interest were expressly invited in forming 
bionet.microbiology by Dr. Latterich and myself at the time of the 
original discussion of both newsgroups, in which Una Smith was 
an active participant. I again posted comments to that effect during the 
RFD for sci.bio.microbiology. Una's search apparently missed 
at least these items.

In fact, all levels of interest have always been, and will continue to be
invited in bionet.microbiology. The numerous postings from high school
students, instructors, and other non-specialists are obviously quite
welcomed both "offficially" and in practice.

> (1)  The assertion that s.b.microbiology is "limited" to "non-specialists",
> either by intent or practice, has no basis in fact.

The "intent"  I think is quite clear from the very charter you include:

"This newsgroup (s.b.m) serves also as a place where lay readers
can ask biologists their questions about yeasts, fungi, and bacteria,
as well as health and environmental issues having to do with these
and any other microscopic organisms.  This group complements the more
specialized newsgroup bionet.microbiology".

Neither has  bionet.microbiology ever been "limited" to "specialists" 
nor discouraged the "lay reader" from participating. Without these
distinctions then, sci.bio.microbiology is precisely a duplicaton of the
existing newsgroup  "bionet.microbiology", a problem pointed out
frequently in the RFD's for sci.bio.microbiology and in the original
discussion which took place  concerning both groups.

>  Hostile comments of this type, which you have made repeatedly in both
>  bionet.microbiology and in sci.bio.microbiology, serve only to offend
>  and alienate readers.  

Hopefully they will serve to consolidate these discussion groups and 
perhaps resolve the duplication problem if there is sufficient interest.

> Such behavior has no place in Usenet, and does not reflect well on you 
> or on bionet.microbiology.

Those of us who have followed this discussion from the beginning  may
not find the proposal and creation of a second redundant microbiology 
newsgroup after the idea of where to establish such a group was resolved
by a resounding vote (ie. Una's first proposal encouraging a  "no" vote for
bionet.microbiology in favor of a sci.bio.microbiology) as a flattering 
reflection either. Personal inflexibility appears to have had a detrimental 
effect on the Usenet at large in this case.

As it is, I would suggest that readers of sci.bio.microbiology at least
cross-post in order to reach the entire interested readership, if not 
move their discussion to bionet.microbiology.

Of course, being flexible, I am now reading both groups and that 
may also be your preference .  :)

J. E. Graham
Biology Department
Indiana University Bloomington  

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