Learning-org Admin

Richard Karash (rkarash@world.std.com)
Fri, 25 Nov 1994 09:52:58 +0001 (EST)

Greetings to all. This is the Thanksgiving holiday here in the US and I'm
relaxing up in New Hampshire. I've really enjoyed the recent threads;
thanks to all of you for enriching the discussion!

Digest Format
We've always distributed to the list as individual email messages (up to
10 a day); this week I experimented by combining msgs into one daily digest.

I've received 25 feedback messages. It's clear that some people are really
inconvenienced by receiving several messages a day from this list. And
others *really* prefer receiving individual messages. From my end, making
the digests manually is too labor-intensive to keep up.

I'm going back to individual message format and will seek an automated
method that let's each person have an option to receive the list *either*
way. (If you know how to do this, particularly with a majordomo list,
please email me.)

If you have to drop out because of msg volume, email me and I'll let you
know when we have a digest option.

Other Feedback
Several said (in very nice ways) that sometimes the tone has been a
little argumentative.

Two objected to the list being moderated. ("Moderated" means that I see
each message before it is sent out to all of you.)

For those interested, I've included quotes from the feedback messages

Richard Karash ("Rick") | (o) 508-879-8301 | Mac * Flying
Innovation Associates, Inc. | (fax) 508-626-2205 | Systems Thinking
3 Speen St, Framingham MA 01701 | rkarash@world.std.com | Std Disclaimer.

Quotes from Feedback msgs received:

The content I have found most valuable and interesting so far
has been when people give concrete examples, rather than
assertions, of their positions or questions. Some of the introductions,
for example, give some particulars about an individual's application
of L-O ideas or their interests. Less interesting are debates...

In general, [the tone is] good, although there can be a bit too much
querulousness... The moment the discussion verges on to the
my-<approach><interpretation><theory>-is-better- than-yours, the spirit
suffers. You can feel the energy seep out of the discussion.

The learning-org list is so active that I'm concerned that it will overflow
my mailbox when I'm away for more than a week. How do I suspend (or
throttle back) the arrivals? (...by quiting and rejoining?)

I would like to see this maillist as an example of a "virtual Learning
Org.". That is, that we practice all the disciplines of a learning org. with
one another on this list. Otherwise it's talking without walking, so to
speak. So, the disciplines of inquiry, suspension, etc. would come in very

Just a small suggestion of the top of the head. Could we not
encourage a mixture of actual case studies/results/summaries
involving LOs. I'd like to see the background, what was done and
why, references, followup (how much) and maybe how much time and
organizational resources were provided. Finally, then, a long
term assessment. Maybe I'm asking too much!

Seems o.k. to me so far. Much more useful and cooperative than other
lists I'm on. Not as pseudo techie as Quality, or as MBAish as BPR.
Good as it is.

It would be more valuable and much more efficient (to readers) if
somehow all the messages could be compiled into one, maybe on a
daily basis, and sent out as one message rather than 10 or 20. The
large number of messages tends to clog up my mailbox.

I am overwhelmed by the volume of the mail I am receiving from this list. I
have not yet introduced myself... I barely have time to skim/track the

I was pleased to read the comments about being open-minded re: Tony Robbins.
(The system appears to be self-organizing...)

Re: Msg Digest


I am enjoying the bantering but would appreciate knowing what Tony Robbin's
theory is. In debate there is learning.

I'm using CC:Mail Remote... Unless someone specifically types in their
e-mail address, I don't have a clue where they are sending it from.

While most of the discussion on the list is in the spirit of the learning
organization, I become dismayed at times when some writers take positions
and defend them... I conceive the learning-org list as a virtual
organization whose mission is learning and whose vision is enlightening
the world about sharing learning.

Should the the issue of moderating this list have been discussed prior to
its implementation? perhaps items posted to it are not of interest to
yourself, but to others....well who knows. I was under the impression
that discussion lists enabled a free flow of ideas and that netiquette is
self moderating within the group (group norms theory).

I prefer separate mail messages -- easier to delete from
subject headings, easier to save for later reading. However,
its clear from comments on a mailing list I manage that
some people find digests very appealing.

Many thanks for experimenting with the digest form. Much easier to scan email
from previous 50+ to currently under 10.

Richard, I'm not convinced that the "batch" is better. I like to
read each message and either respond or delete as they come up.
Having a batch requires me to read and save everything, then go
to a word processor before I can respond and delete.

My vote is for individual messages, rather than the batch.

I prefer the non-digest version.

Is it possible to have either option ?

I find it difficult to scan through the messages as I lose continuity.

On a positive side. This list has taken off and I am getting great info.
and thoughts from it. I even enjoy the flamings that some of my
friends... send out

I really prefer separate messages to digests. Sometimes I choose not to
read particular messages, and I do not want to scroll through it all to
get to one I want to read. Non-digests make ignoring administrative
messages like this one an option. (Just my opinion)

[Digest] isn't much use! Whats the point of a subject line if you cant
use it to determine a messages content. By grouping all messages in
digest form you have to read the entire digest, its not the quickest

As for list moderation, without any prior discussion, or democratic
process, well I am opposed. I am sure my fellow list members are aware
of netiquette, and would be willing to inform new users of the protocol
if they transgressed.