Friday, October 15, 2004

The Internet as I495:
Respect for those Not Present

jordon cooper references jonny baker:

the one thing i'll say now is that i was with alan and mike and we did quickly drop in and look at the blogs - they took it on the chin and were highly amused in particular by the banter in the comments on steve's. i was very impressed by them in that way. but i felt for them - don't know what you can do about it - it creates dialogue and it's out there to debate but it may help to imagine the human beings present who we are talking about and say what we would say in the way we'd say it if they were present?

On the Washington Beltway, because we are separated from one another by our cars, we might find it easier to become completely infuriated by our fellows and say all manner of horrible things. I am afraid that the same can be said by the fact that you are separated from me right now by this laptop in my Houston hotel room. And then if I don't imagine you're at the end of this electronic connection, I may imagine it's even less important that I show you respect.

Because someone is not present, we might make the mistake of collapsing them down only to the point they are making with which we virulently disagree.

This has become an issue in the faithmaps online community. We are a bit of an unusual group because there are no belief-requirements for joining. There is, however, one behavioral requirement: disrespect is not tolerated. And in the past, we've felt the need to extend this required respect to those not present.

We do not believe physical or virtual proximity is a prerequisite for respect.

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