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Re: [tlug] Better to have "bottom-posted"?

On 2009-11-10 07:57 -0800 (Tue), steve smith wrote:

> One big difference between this group and others I belong to is that 
> members on this group know about threads and threaded email readers.  

Apparently not, given the amount of text some people include here.

I'd argue that top-posters understand threads quite well, and
additionally, at the very least, their lack of threaded mail readers.

> With top posting the entire text is carried in each email but the thread 
> tends to be lost.

I'm not clear how this is the case. You simply read straight down, or,
with only marginally more difficulty (since you can easily use the depth
of the markers at the left to determine where things start) up the
thread of this particular message.

It's particularly convenient because you just keep scanning forward (a
familiar operation) until you get to something you remember, and then
you work back from there. (Though I suppose how comfortable that really
is depends on how much you liked--or could stand--the Christopher Nolan
film _Memento_.)

Well, no, real convenience is that you can stop far, far before the end
and know that ass hasn't snuck an important comment down amidst way too
much quoting.

> In bottom posting only the context you are replying to is in the
> email....

That, unfortunately, is not true. In *well-edited* postings, only the
context you're replying to is there. And I find it pretty interesting
that you're using the passive voice here, since if it's the context
that *you're* replying to, it was you who did all the work to delete
the other stuff. Why do you imply, immediately after you actively did
it, that it just sort of happened? (Probably because you didn't do it,
I'm guessing, and were hoping that the moderation fairy would. Ok, I'm
cynical. So sue me.)

No, the typical bottom post is a top-post with the single line of new
text placed, instead of before 800 lines of full quotes from every
message this thread has ever seen, to after those 800 lines of full
quotes from every message this thread has ever seen.

> ...and you can see the logic of the whole thread with 
> your email reader.

No need, it's all in the one message. Assuming you can wade through it.

What you're really thinking of, when you hear "bottom-posting," is
"well-edited posting," where just enough context is provided for any
particular response that you can either remember what more you need, or
go back and find the whole thing in the archives (or in your threaded
reader, if you've not deleted the messages).

True bottom-posting is like top-posting, but with the new bit at the

Curt Sampson       <>        +81 90 7737 2974
           Functional programming in all senses of the word:

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