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Re: DML administrative message

Dear Anthony,

please re-read my messages, and get your facts straight.

1) "he was stating how China's fossils are all faunal (a mix of
unrelated Classes)."
false, I said many or most are fake, and of the rest many are mixes,
but I never said all. Are you a liar or unable to read English?

I expect a written apology.

2) "aren't there DML rules against slandering entire countries?  (the
Chinese Government runs the museums, doesn't it?)"

as I explained, the government runnign a museum does not mean that the
people in charge are competent. You are building a strawman argument
here, and I expect another apology, in writing.

also, as explained above and in previous emails, Chinese and Western
values differ. how can I be slandering a country when I obviously
respected and respect its cultural identity?

3) you called me impolite without any reason. I expect another apology.

4) you make this a matter of the list, but you fail to quote our
private messages. This is slander, because you imply insulting
behaviour by me without bringing fact. I demand an immediate, public
(i.e., to the list) apology. Otherwise I will have to ask the list
moderators for disciplinary action against you.

5) you sent my second-to-last reply, and omitted your own previous
message. This makes you a liar for sure. I will ask for disciplinary
action for this.

6) you keep implying that Western museums do not label fake fossils as
such. What is your agenda?

@Mickey and Mary, @list: sorry, I can't stand tought police, I can't
stand muzzles, and I expect to be allowed to tell of my
palaeo-experiences abroad truthfully and differenciated on the DML.
And I especially can't stand liars who mis-represent private emails.

@Mickey and Mary: if you wish I will forward you the full
communication between me and this person.


On Wed, Aug 4, 2010 at 10:42 AM, Anthony Docimo <keenir@hotmail.com> wrote:
> hello, sir.
> I was talking with heinrich.mallison@googlemail.com and
> we were discussing Chinese fossils and museums (and he seemed oddly reluctant 
> to say any of this in-thread), and he was stating how China's fossils are all 
> faunal (a mix of unrelated Classes).
> aren't there DML rules against slandering entire countries?  (the Chinese 
> Government runs the museums, doesn't it?)
> and I'm really confused as to how him offering to help, is impolite.
> I thought you should be informed; hopefully I'm overreacting, but better safe 
> than sorry.
> this is the latest reply he sent me:
> ----------------------------------------
>> Date: Wed, 4 Aug 2010 10:14:49 +0200
>> Subject: Re: real or fake skeletons (was re Tianyu Museum of Nature's "world 
>> record" dinosaur collection)
>> From: heinrich.mallison@googlemail.com
>> To: keenir@hotmail.com
>> > that sounds...unlikely.
>> >
>> > though, when you noticed what was wrong, did you extend an offer to the 
>> > museum in question, to help them correct what was in err?
>> >
>> >
>> unlikely?
>> have you ever been to China or some other place where vertebrate
>> paleontology is practically inexistent as a science, compared to the
>> size of the land, the people, and the number of finds? Amateurs do the
>> weirdest things.... also, it is a cultural thing: the message is moire
>> important than 100% authenticity to most Chinese.
>> No, I am German, but I was not that impolite.
> ----------------------------------------
>> Date: Thu, 1 Jul 2010 07:36:26 -0700
>> From: mickeyprowe@gmail.com
>> To: dinosaur@usc.edu
>> Subject: DML administrative message
>> This file was last touched February 2, 2010
>> The first part of this isn't quite correct since there are a few
>> changes I haven't filtered through the pages. Mainly the changes are
>> just fixes of addresses and URIs. If you follow our advice and enter
>> DML web pages via dinosaurmailinglist.org, then you didn't and won't
>> notice any difference between last month and now. Until farther
>> notice, dinosaurmailinglist.org points to
>> http://mprowe.heyup.me/DML.php
>> // Policy tweaking: You should be aware that whenever I make
>> // substantive changes to the DML's administrative web page, there is
>> // a link to the change here:
>> //
>> // http://mprowe.heyup.me/Administrivia.php#change_summary
>> //
>> // If you're new to the DML... we have implemented a filter designed
>> // to block all MIME or html coded portions of messages. We had to
>> // do this to prevent viruses from circulating through the list. In
>> // order for your messages to reach everyone, and more importantly
>> // in order for your messages to appear in the archive, you *MUST*
>> // send them as plain text only. If you have any doubts about whether
>> // you are doing this, please check the archives to see how your
>> // messages are appearing. If you do not know how to format your mail
>> // as plain text only, please see: http://www.expita.com/nomime.html
>> //
>> // For more explanation about the filter and MESSAGE TRUNCATED errors,
>> // please see:
>> //
>> // http://mprowe.heyup.me/MessageTruncation.html
>> //
>> // As I noted previously, I've added instructions on how to see the plain
>> // text alternative for a few programs: Pine, AppleMail, Juno, and Netscape.
>> // Check out the MessageTruncation page if you want to see those
>> // instructions or would like to add instructions for other mail readers.
>> //
>> // As always, comments on policy are welcomed as long as they are made
>> // to the list-owners and not to the list. -- MPR
>> Rather than sending the whole long administrative message each month
>> I'm going to give you only the table of contents and the two sections
>> that I expect to be the most popular. If you wish to see the entire
>> document you can visit it at any time at:
>> http://www.dinosaurmailinglist.org
>> -------------------------
>> Contents:
>> 1. How to unsubscribe
>> 2. How to subscribe
>> 3. How to receive the list as a digest
>> 4. How to access the archives
>> 5. What to do when you're going on vacation
>> 6. How to change your address for the list
>> 7. How to send messages to the list
>> 8. Things not to do and what will happen if you do them
>> 9. What to do if you're not receiving mail from the list
>> 10. Where to get more information
>> 0. Summary of changes from previous version
>> Modified some addresses and URIs to reflect a move of the
>> web pages to a new site.
>> -- MPR
>> 1. How to unsubscribe
>> In order to permanently stop receiving mail from the dinosaur list,
>> you should send an e-mail message to:
>> listproc@usc.edu
>> with a BLANK SUBJECT LINE (if your mail reader will not allow you to
>> send an empty subject line, just put "Hi" in your subject) and ONLY
>> the following line in the body (i.e. text) of the message:
>> unsubscribe dinosaur
>> You will know that you have been unsubscribed because listproc will
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>> mail from the list after that notification, please do not send in
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>> going that route. Frequently some mail will be on its way to you when
>> you send listproc an unsubscribe message, and thus you may receive
>> mail from the list even though you are no longer subscribed.
>> Why "unsubscribe" sometimes fails (or things to look for if listproc
>> sends you an error message in response to an unsubscribe request):
>> a) Misspellings
>> Please double check your spelling of all words. Misspelled words are
>> the most common reason that "unsubscribe" requests fail.
>> Unfortunately computer programs aren't very good at determining your
>> actual intended message if it's different from what you've typed --
>> listproc does not contain a spell-checker.
>> b) Alternate addresses
>> You must send the unsubscribe request from the same e-mail address
>> that you used to subscribe. If you submit an unsubscribe request and
>> listproc tells you that you are not subscribed, please try to verify
>> that you sent your request from the proper address.
>> If you only have one address and your first unsubscribe request
>> indicates that you are not subscribed, you will probably need the help
>> of the list owner in order to have your address removed. This is
>> frequently a problem when helpful system administrators re-arrange
>> your system in such a way as that your outgoing mail carries an
>> address different from what it carried at the time you subscribed.
>> There is essentially nothing you can do for yourself in this situation
>> except to ask for help (although I usually notice the error messages
>> and will investigate even if you don't ask).
>> If you can't get listproc to take you off the list and you're
>> convinced it's not your fault, the person to go to for help is one of the
>> list owners, (tha-that would be me): Mickey Rowe
>> (MickeyPRowe@gmail.com) or Mary Kirkaldy (MKirkaldy@aol.com).
>> Feel free to misspell words when you write to me. I'm a little bit
>> friendlier than listproc when it comes to dealing with such things! I
>> don't recommend that you misspell words when you write to Mary. She
>> might make fun of you.
>> 8. Things not to do and what will happen if you do them
>> Currently the DML is not moderated in the technical sense (the
>> list owners do not ordinarily see messages before they are distributed
>> to all subscribers), but that does not mean that the list is a
>> free-for-all. We at DML management are strong proponents of free
>> speech, but this list was created for a purpose -- to give people a
>> forum for the scientific discussion of dinosaurs. If your messages
>> are counterproductive to that purpose, your privileges to submit
>> messages can and will be revoked.
>> When the list owners feel that contributions from particular
>> participants are in some way counter to the purposes of the list, we
>> will notify those participants privately. If said participants do not
>> change their behavior, we may choose to revoke at least temporarily,
>> their privilege to submit messages to the DML.
>> If you feel a participant should be cautioned or disciplined please
>> let us know by writing to Mickey or Mary with your concerns. We
>> generally handle such things without public discussion, so the only
>> way to find out what we are or are not doing is to ask us. See
>> http://mprowe.heyup.me/KinmanIncident.html for
>> further discussion of our views on this subject specifically with
>> regards to an incident in which we chose to go public.
>> In addition to what you might glean from any private correspondence
>> directly from the list's owners, there are several specific
>> infractions that may cause you to lose some or all dinosaur list
>> privileges. The rules formalized below have been and will continue to
>> be shaped by the list's evolution. Their primary intent is to provide
>> participants with guidelines indicating what we expect of their
>> behavior and what they can expect from us. We use these rules as much
>> as possible to decide how to treat potential "infractions", mainly
>> because we wish to be fair and (if you put in an honest effort)
>> predictable. We welcome feedback (provided it is not sent directly to
>> the list) about these rules and their implementation.
>> a) Attempting to use the list for advertising fossils
>> The first such infraction is using the list as a means to aid in the
>> selling or buying of fossils. All of us involved in list maintenance
>> feel quite strongly that the list's resources should not be used for
>> that purpose. We will not tolerate messages that directly help
>> buyers and sellers of real fossil material find each other. If you
>> advertise a fossil for sale (even if you're not the one who'll be
>> collecting the money) you may be removed from the list without
>> warning. If you pass along a message that is not explicitly an
>> advertisement but serves to alert others of a location where an
>> advertisement can be found (for example, giving a uri to the site) --
>> even if you're mentioning the advertisement only to lament its
>> existence -- you will be warned not to do so again. The warning
>> you are sent will include a one week suspension of your privilege to
>> submit messages to the list because we want to underscore the
>> seriousness with which we view offenses to this policy. If you
>> repeat such an infraction and we have even the slightest suspicion
>> that you did so in willful disregard of the list's policies you will
>> be permanently removed from the list. In administering this rule
>> we broadly interpret "advertisement" to mean anything that reports a
>> fossil which is or will be up for sale. This includes but is not
>> limited to announcements of fossils that will be made available for
>> auction, and we do not draw a strong distinction between "journalism"
>> and "advertising" in this context. Commercial fossil dealers can be
>> quite good at generating publicity, so the fact that a news
>> organization such as CNN writes a story will not prevent us from
>> judging the story to be an advertisement sensu lato. In short,
>> if you are considering sending a message that a) has anything to do
>> with a real or potential exchange of a fossil for money or b) contains
>> a URI to a story with content such as described in a) you should send
>> it to the list administrators first and ask whether or not it would be
>> appropriate. If you send such a message to the list without our
>> pre-screening we're not going to be very receptive to arguments about
>> why you thought it was acceptable. We would prefer to have that
>> argument ahead of time so that there's no need for us to consider
>> disciplinary action.
>> Please note that the above refers explicitly to the sale of fossils.
>> Other dinosaur relevant advertisements (as long as
>> they're short and preferably in the form of instructions for how to
>> obtain more information) have traditionally been accepted.
>> Advertisements for the sale of replicas of fossils are
>> also permissible without reservation.
>> b) Spam
>> Off topic advertisements (e.g. spam) are also explicitly forbidden,
>> though we suspect that spam would get you thrown off of
>> any list.
>> c) Creationism
>> There appears to be a near unanimous sentiment on the list that
>> arguments about Creationism should not be entertained here. If you
>> attempt to introduce a Creationist argument your posting privileges
>> will be suspended for a week. After that week you will be allowed to
>> submit messages again, but if you repeat the infraction you will be
>> removed from the list. It is my impression that the above is lenient
>> in that many list members might prefer to have people who submit
>> Creationist arguments be removed after the first violation.
>> We're currently opting for a bit of leniency but may become more
>> strict if this becomes a problem.
>> During a flareup surrounding the Kansas Board of Education's decision
>> in August of 1999 to change the guidelines for K-12 education in that state,
>> it became clear that there was a good deal of confusion surrounding this
>> topic on the dinosaur list. From the beginning:
>> http://dml.cmnh.org/1997Jun/msg00675.html
>> this policy was intended to squelch any discussions of Creationism. Many
>> appear to have erroneously presumed that they can write what they want as
>> long as they do not support Creationist positions. However, that too
>> is wrong as I tried to make clear early on:
>> http://dml.cmnh.org/1997Jun/msg00974.html
>> Specifically, in that message I wrote:
>> My goal is to keep the peace while allowing a healthy discussion of
>> the science involved in the study of dinosaur remains. In my view
>> Creationism doesn't fit under that scope. That doesn't mean we should
>> be openly hostile about it even if the hostility is expressed as
>> humor.
>> Since that bit of advice has gone unheeded, we have decided to close up a
>> loophole -- responding to messages about Creationism will be treated
>> exactly the same as Creationist messages themselves. If somebody brings
>> up the topic and you respond, you will lose your privilege to submit messages
>> for one week. A second infraction may get you removed from the list.
>> Some have indicated that by banning the topic we are somehow sending the
>> message that there is some scientific validity to Creationism. We don't think
>> that position is logically defensible, but to try to cover that base here we
>> will state again that Creationism does not belong on the dinosaur list 
>> because
>> it is not science. We sympathise with those trying to teach science in a
>> culture which does not always recognize what is and isn't good science, 
>> though,
>> and for the benefit of such people we here provide some links which we think
>> are useful in this context:
>> The National Center for Science Education
>> (http://WWW.NatCenSciEd.org/),
>> the National Academy of Sciences's official position on the subject
>> (http://books.nap.edu/html/creationism/index.html),
>> the University of California Museum of Paleontology's web site on
>> understanding evolution (http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evosite/evohome.html),
>> the talk.origins home page (http://www.ediacara.org/~to/index.html)
>> and its FAQ archive (http://www.talkorigins.org/),
>> and from one of our own subscribers,
>> Dr. Mathew F. Bonnan's "Evolution and Science: A Guide for
>> the Layperson" (http://www.wiu.edu/users/mfb100/evolution.htm).
>> For more information on "Intelligent Design", you can also see a
>> recent article in Phi Delta Kappan
>> (http://www.pdkintl.org/kappan/k_v86/k0412ter.htm).
>> Please feel free to write to me in order to let us know if any of
>> these links break or if you have additional sites you'd like to add
>> to this section.
>> d) Flaming
>> We expect to have more difficulty enforcing the following (just within
>> the past week I've had a few occasions to consider implementing this
>> rule...), but we would also like to be able to keep a light handle on
>> the discussions by reserving the right to treat generally disruptive
>> behavior in the same manner that we will treat the particular
>> disruption of Creationist messages. That is, if you send in a message
>> such as one which contains an attack against another person on the
>> list, you can expect your posting privileges to be suspended. A
>> second such offense may get you removed from the list permanently. We
>> have no real desire to be dictators here, so we welcome suggestions
>> about messages which you think warrant disciplinary action. We may
>> not ultimately agree with you, but we do want your input.
>> e) irritating other members of the list
>> As we wrote above, we're not comfortable as dictators, so we're
>> formally asking for the lists' help in the execution of a modified
>> version of section 8d above. In addition to being silenced for abject
>> flaming, you may be sent to a virtual corner to cool off if others on
>> the list think that your behavior warrants such treatment. In
>> particular, if I receive three complaints about an individual within a
>> span of three days, then that individual's posting privileges will be
>> suspended for one week. If this ever happens to you, please take it
>> gracefully because if you come back flaming then you will still be
>> subject to the disciplinary actions described in section 8d. (Let's
>> all hope that the threat of this is all we need... If it isn't, then
>> we must rely upon all of you to be conscientious and complain when you
>> think a situation warrants it.)
>> f) Ad Hominem
>> The phrase "Ad Hominem" is frequently used incorrectly in terms of its
>> historical definition. People often think the phrase refers to
>> insults, but it is actually more general in the context of a logical
>> argument. Technically an Ad Hominem argument is one that addresses
>> characteristics (or supposed characteristics) of a person presenting
>> an argument rather than the presented argument itself. People
>> addressing the personalities of others may have their posting
>> privileges suspended for one week whether the attacked person is on
>> the list or not. Check the archives for just about any discussion of
>> Robert Bakker or Alan Feduccia and you'll find offenses of this
>> policy. As with flaming, a second such offense may get you removed
>> from the list permanently. When I suggested this rule, one alert
>> subscriber (Sam Girouard, R.I.P.) pointed out that the list
>> historically recognized one reason for discussing personalities. If
>> you are considering a collaboration with another paleontologist and
>> would like to solicit opinions about the wisdom of your choice, you
>> may ask the list. Responses should go directly to the person making
>> the request, however, especially if they are of a sensitive nature.
>> g) treating the list as your own personal forum
>> When discussions get hot people have a tendency to write many messages
>> in a short span of time. Because the list can only process a finite
>> number of messages per day, and because most people will only tolerate
>> so much traffic before they start deciding the list isn't worth the
>> effort of trying to keep up, this is a bad thing. During moderation
>> everyone was held to a limit of only five messages per day. Any
>> messages after the fifth were held in queue until the next day. Since
>> the list is no longer moderated, that's not an option. I suggested
>> reinstating a quota of five messages per day with a sixth message
>> earning an offender a one-day suspension of posting privileges.
>> Subsequent infractions of this quota rule would earn you longer
>> suspensions. Although five per day seemed to work well during
>> moderation, a few people thought this number was too low. I'm thus
>> changing it to seven on a trial basis. Infractions will earn you only
>> a one-day suspension even if it's not the first time you've gone over
>> your quota. Let's see how this works. If it doesn't then the policy
>> could be amended or abandoned.
>> h) Moratoria on tired threads
>> The proper procedure for terminating a thread that you think has worn
>> out its welcome on the list is to write to me (MickeyPRowe@gmail.com)
>> or Mary (MKirkaldy@aol.com) with a specific complaint about the thread
>> and why you think it's gone on long enough (I suspect that typically
>> naming the thread you object to will be sufficient since in most cases
>> the reason for its objectionability will be readily apparent). If we
>> agree with you, we will write to the list and ask that the thread be
>> shut down. At that time one of us will specify a period (generally
>> not less than 24 nor more than 48 hours; exact length dependent upon
>> factors such as the relevance of the thread, the time it has existed,
>> and the amount of repetition that's already been seen) during which
>> final statements on the thread may be submitted. Anyone who attempts
>> to continue or resurrect the thread within a week of the thread's
>> official demise will be subject to a week-long suspension of posting
>> privileges. At present we are not considering disciplinary action
>> against people who write to the list requesting that a thread be
>> ended, but we might change our minds in the future. The purpose of
>> this rule is to end meta-discussions about what should or shouldn't be
>> discussed on the list.
>> Additionally, list owners may order an immediate shutdown of
>> discussions which arise on subjects which are not germane to the
>> purpose of the list -- dinosaur science. Notable examples of subjects
>> which have no place on the list are cryptozoology, time travel, Planet
>> of the Apes, and random computer virus alerts, among others. List
>> members will be expected to recognize these calls for cessation of
>> discussion (i.e. Mickey Rowe or Mary Kirkaldy will unambiguously post
>> that this thread is not to be pursued). Disciplinary action may be
>> taken against list members who continue to post on these subjects,
>> whether or not 24 hours has passed. Generally we will allow two hours
>> since we realize there's no guarantee that you will receive our
>> message as soon as it is sent. We have been and will be inflexible
>> about breaches -- we can't know when you received a message, and the
>> fact that you may not have read a message you already received is not
>> a good defense in our eyes; standard netiquette is that you should not
>> be writing to a public forum unless you have read all of your messages
>> from that forum because you want to make sure that what you're writing
>> is not a repeat of something someone else has already written.
>> Discussion on whether the subject should be allowed is to be sent to
>> the list owners and not to the list.
>> For a variety of reasons, not the least of which is that we recognize
>> that not all people agree on when a thread has stopped being
>> interesting, we created a spinoff mailing list. The initial plan for
>> that list was to provide space for people to continue discussions that
>> started on the DML but for one reason or another had worn out their
>> welcome. The thread that originally inspired the creation of the
>> spinoff list was in turn inspired by Greg Paul imagining the
>> appearance of dinosaurs that didn't evolve, but presumably could have.
>> Chris Srnka asked about it
>> (http://dml.cmnh.org/2001Jul/msg01134.html), and voila, KilledThreads
>> was born
>> (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DinosaurMailingList-KilledThreads/).
>> Responses to Chris' question ballooned into a huge project that
>> provides the bulk of what's in the archives for that list. We at DML
>> management are happy that the list has found that purpose. However,
>> the list can be used for any topic you'd like to discuss that is
>> somehow relevant to the list but would not be tolerated on the DML
>> proper. For instance, if you'd like to complain publicly about list
>> administration and don't want to go through the normal channels as
>> spelled out here, the KilledThreads list is the place to do it.
>> i) Attachments
>> We don't expect to discipline anyone for this, but we do ask that you
>> not include attachments (such as files containing images) to messages.
>> A large number of people will not be able to read the files, many will
>> not even be able to receive them (believe it or not some people have
>> limits on the sizes of messages they can receive!), and attachments
>> are a dandy way to transmit computer viruses. If you wish to transmit
>> an image or other form of encoded message please find another place to
>> make it available and send to the dinosaur list only an announcement
>> of the file's availability. If you have no other space to put up the
>> file, you can write to me (MickeyPRowe@gmail.com). I don't want to
>> get in the business of making temporary web pages, but I do have such
>> resources available to me. If I don't get too many requests I can
>> offer limited use of those resources to others.
>> j) Violating embargoes
>> Scientific journals generally have a policy to reject material for
>> publication when that material has already been published some place
>> else. Consequently scientists need to keep some things to themselves
>> until papers describing those things are published. During the final
>> stages of the publication process, journals will frequently release
>> information to members of the press with the understanding that the
>> individuals receiving that information will not distribute it before
>> some pre-specified time. The time during which the press has the
>> information and is ethically obliged not to share it is referred to as
>> an embargo period. Journals may decide not to publish an article
>> they'd already decided to publish if its content is disseminated
>> during that period. Consequently the authors will pay a price if
>> someone else distributes that information.
>> We at dinosaur list management do not take a position on whether or
>> not embargoes are a good thing. If you'd like to know more about the
>> background of embargoes, you should look at the news focus in the
>> October 30th, 1998 issue of Science
>> (http://www.sciencemag.org/content/vol282/issue5390/index.shtml).
>> There are five articles in that news focus, and they give a pretty
>> good overview of what others think of embargoes and why. Our goal is
>> only to protect researchers whose publications could be compromised by
>> the premature release of information about their research. Whether or
>> not you (or we) think embargoes should be done away with is irrelevant
>> to official policy. As long as authors can be hurt by people talking
>> about their research we will do what we can to protect them. If you
>> think there is any chance something you want to submit to the list is
>> privileged information you should seek the advice of the researchers
>> who performed the work. If you violate an embargo or otherwise
>> release information that jeopardizes a publication there is a good
>> chance we will permanently remove you from the dinosaur list. As
>> always we will try to use some discretion in implementing the policy,
>> but do not submit something if you are uncertain as to whether or not
>> it will be in violation of this policy. That is not the way to find
>> out where our boundaries lie unless you want to be banned from the
>> list.
>> k) Facilitating participation by exiles
>> Earlier versions of this page used to boast how congenial the list has
>> been and included a statement that no one had ever been forcibly
>> removed. Unfortunately, that condition no longer pertains to the DML.
>> There are several people who have made themselves unwelcome as
>> participants, and we have taken moderate technical measures to prevent
>> their participation. Some of these individuals still read the list's
>> archives, and sometimes they will send e-mail directly to the authors
>> of DML messages. To remain in good standing, participants are
>> forbidden to allow these exiles to participate vicariously through
>> forwarded messages. When sending a "response" to the DML, you should
>> make sure that the message to which you are responding really was sent
>> to the DML. And if someone ever asks you to send in a message on
>> their behalf you should be suspicious. Don't do it unless you are
>> certain they have not been banned from the list. If you do send
>> comments from an individual banned from the list, you will be at least
>> warned not to send comments from that individual again. If it is a
>> second offense for you or we have other compelling reasons to believe
>> that you knew the person was banned, you will join them in exile.
>> Your humble list administrators,
>> --
>> Mickey Rowe (MickeyPRowe@gmail.com)
>> Mary Kirkaldy (MKirkaldy@AOL.COM)