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RYBICKI, ED ED at molbiol.uct.ac.za
Wed Mar 15 02:19:58 EST 1995

> As a representative of your "ignorant" general public, I would 
like to say the

You are probably taking things out of context: you must realise that 
this newsgroup has, as its mainstays, REAL virologists - people who 
are experts in their field.  And if they criticise something on the 
basis of its science, it is maybe as well to listen.  So if someone 
said "ignorant general public", it is meant in the sense of "people 
who don't know much virology" rather than "stupid people".

> It even prompted me to look up your pompous newsgroup, for what it 
was worth.

It's not really pompous - just serious.  Remember, this is not in 
fact a general newsgroup in the sense of sci.bio.microbiology or 
whatever; it is actually a forum funded and run by the NF primarily 
as a contact point for virologists.  It is only since the advent of 
commercial Internet access providers that the general public has had 
a look-in - and it has meant people who ask serious questions from a 
position of considerable knowledge being swamped by a flood of "I 
need to do a paper, tell me everything about AIDS/Ebola/cat scratch 
fever" type of questions.  So they get a little testy (I know I do). 
 It is NOT a forum for the education of the public at large, though 
if it manages to do some of that, then so much the better.  That 
help at all?

 | Ed Rybicki, PhD          |  (ed at molbiol.uct.ac.za)  |
 | Dept Microbiology        | University of Cape Town  |    
 | Private Bag, Rondebosch  |   7700, South Africa     |          
 | fax: xx27-21-650 4023    |  tel: xx27-21-650 3265   |  
 |       URL: http://www.uct.ac.za/microbiology        |

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