[erlang-questions] Announcing Erlang.org Code of Conduct
Fri Mar 27 16:14:33 CET 2015
It is very kind to suggest that there is some point to this discussion.
However, if it is to be about selective quoting in general I have to add
that my comments are only supposed to be about this practice in emails.
erlang-questions is not the right place for a general discussion of that.
The relative badness of heavy editing of quotes in emails is minor. Only
2 people on erlang-questions have expressed a dislike. Neither of these
is such strong wording as the top anti-top-posting sentiments that have
been seen. So perhaps it would be better to continue with inline
comments to avoid incurring that kind of emotions.
On 03/27/2015 08:37 AM, Richard A. O'Keefe wrote:
> On 27/03/2015, at 7:23 pm, Bengt Kleberg <> wrote:
> I think there is some point in continuing the discussion,
> but NOT as a discussion about top-posting vs inline
>> Given a background of no problems with heavily edited quotes and inline comments I understand that such an experience would make one like that practice. My experience is not one of those. I would prefer no editing of what I have written. It is therefore I top post. Do unto others etc.
> We are now onto something that has nothing to do with the
> mechanics of mail. This is perhaps the key question. One
> reason it is a key question is that Bengt Kleberg's
> position is one I find morally consistent but could never
> have imagined it possible to hold. If he's right about
> selective quoting being wrong, I have been doing bad things
> for a long time and need to change. So have I?
> It has been standard practice in the West, for about the
> last two thousand years, when you quote someone to quote
> only part. (I'm thinking not just of Augustine and Origen
> but Clement, Ignatius, Paul, the Evangelists, the fragments
> we have of the pre-Socratics that survive because they were
> quoted, ...) To be sure, the tractate "Ethics of the Fathers"
> (Pirkei Avot) says in chapter 6, verse 6:
> ... Torah is acquired with forty-eight qualities.
> These are: study, listening, ...., exactness in
> conveying a teaching, and saying something in the
> name of its speaker. Thus we have learned: On
> who says something in the name of its speaker
> brings redemption to the world, ...
> [Quoted from the English translation at http://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/2122/jewish/Chapter-Six.htm]
> This teaches the ethical importance of quoting accurately
> and attributing correctly. But Pirkei Avot is practically
> made up of *short* quotations. E.g., chapter 1 verse 12:
> ... Hillel would say: Be of the disciples of Aaron---
> a lover of peace, a pursuer of peace, one who loves
> the creatures and draws them close to Torah.
> For the record, I'm not a Jew and never have been,
> but I find Pirkei Avot edifying.
> If it was ok to make a tiny extract from Hillel's teaching,
> how can it be wrong to make an excerpt from mine?
> Or let's descend to the (deliberately) ridiculous:
> Lowering the Bar. (www.loweringthebar.net). The
> recent blog entry "Court: Obligation to Make Sense May
> Not Be Delegated to Client" quotes *part* of the
> petition it's holding up to ridicule. (And links to
> the whole.) Kevin Underhill also quotes *part* of the
> Court's response. The previous entry, "Minor Woodfoolery
> in Today's Supreme Court Opinion", quotes *part* of what
> Justice Kagan wrote and *part* of what Justice Scalia
> wrote. (There's a link to the full document, just as
> e-mail messages have message-IDs to track quoting.)
> Or for an example from our own discipline, consider
> That's David Walden reviewing the book "The Essential
> Knuth", "primarily an interview of Don Knuth by Edgar
> Daylight". In that review, David Walden quotes just
> *four sentences* out of 90 pages.
> If it's OK to extract one tiny point out of a book
> and comment on that, when it's *KNUTH* in question,
> how could it be wrong to edit my messages? Heavily!
> Seriously, I do not have a right to expect, and I do
> not expect, that anything I say, if quoted, will be
> quoted in full. The most I can expect is that the
> attribution be correct and the editing be fair.
> Éric Pallieau () already
> directed our attention to
> which is quite explicit. Section 2.1.1 says
> ... You may shorten the message and quote
> only relevant parts, but be sure you give
> proper attribution. ...
> This is basically the Pirkei Avot rule.
> So I have two questions.
> - For Bengt Kleberg: why do you desire e-mail
> quoting to be so different from quoting
> practice in other verbal media?
> - For the rest of us: if there is to be a
> code of conduct, is it generally agreed that
> * quoting extracts is OK
> * quoting in a way that distorts what the
> author meant is not OK
> * you should at least try to get attribution right
> or is Bengt Kleberg's position common?
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