North American Network Operators Group

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Re: recap of nanog-futures on "on topic" and proposed compromise

  • From: Fred Heutte
  • Date: Sun Sep 24 23:06:22 2006

Creating consternation around boundary conditions and then
proposing artificial self-serving "compromises" is one of the oldest
games there is on mailing lists, going back pretty much to the
invention of Usenet.  At the risk of playing a small role in this
instance, as a longtime lurker I simply point out the predictable
failure pattern here.


>Basically, there is a crowd that says only network related stuff, say,
>trasnit ISP's (as an example, not to say them alone) would be interested
>in, is on topic.
>Others say there are other issues which are oprations related and
>of interest to them. We are split.
>A compromise has now been suggested (by me). The only thing both sides
>agree on is that in fact, the replies and flame wars on what is on topic
>or isn't, and who should speak of what, are disruptive.
>Thus, the compromise idea is that for now and for a predetermined period
>of time, we start with one small change. Debugging is done one step at a
>time rather than in earthshattering moves.
>How about we, for now, only change one thing about NANOG - the specific
>off topic posts that tell others to be quiet, or that they are
>off-topic will be disallowed. This is really a concensus and a good way to
>start making progress rather than escalating a conflict between people
>who just want to get things done and see the NANOG community as a home.
>I believe it's a good temporary solution which will take us ahead, to
>measure how things go, as well as be able to find out what we all agree
>on afterwards. As well as increase the value of the list almost
>This re-cap is from my perspective, naturally. We can keep arguing over
>who said what or what's on or off topic forever. Consolidating on what we
>all agree would be a change for the better and starting there sounds like
>a good idea to me.
>Solving this in a civil fashion just became so much more attractive.
>	Gadi.