[design] re: the archive question

I know Anand stated previously about a prudent
interest in treading carefully in making major
changes to the design-list, and maybe the role
of making a permanent archive is part of this.
whatever frustration there is, it is coming as
a result of someone who has abused the privilege
of hosting the design-list, so I do not separate
the subsequent problems and frustrations from an
earlier censorship, which was evident long before
the list lockdown and its privatization by Howard.

As there are so many ongoing issues and especially
after hearing of Steve's work at Quondam now being
decapitated of its content and internet space-time
dialogue, it makes me wonder if a letter is due for
the PSU academic system, as this case is potentially
precedent setting for 'public' rights for freedom of
information archives and still-working URLs, when a
person decides to put more weight on their rights
than on others who have equally contributed to the
same system. It is possible that a petition could
be waged against the PSU administration to review
the list policy enacted by Howard and Bill Verity,
and to call for an accounting of this action in a
pseudo-legal context, at which time the response
will be in the public realm and who knows-- maybe
a public-interest lawyer would pro-bono a list of
reasonable demands -- such as an open-archive as
those hosted by other PSU lists without the same
legacy -- that you have some responsibility to at
least open the archive and list membership before
privatizing it, and even this may not be legitimate
unless sanctioned by PSU, which PSU could clarify.

This is one way to deal with this situation, and as
unfortunate as it may be, it was no one's choice to
choose the lesser path in any public forum. There is
an unacceptable defiance of the design-listmembership
and so it seems quite fair to put it back into this
context and put the bureaucracy on the spot to have
to answer for a rogue administrator who jeopardizes
a long-term internet project for whatever the reason.

There are other options for archives, but they are
all problematic, as a result of the main issue which
is the fountainhead-like destruction of the design-
list by a virtual Howard Roark with patriotic fervor.

I vote to let the PSU establishment formally respond
to an inquiry and demands regarding the archive and
other list issues, including its support of these new
restrictions. who knows, maybe Howard is under orders
to clamp down and it is a trade-off to being retired,
and still running the university's list, as one of the
representatives of this type of internet control tower.

if there is something to be angry about it is Howard's
creating this situation to a point beyond reason, and
while if he came to his senses and apologizes for being
wrong-headed, that is enough to still move beyond this.
though until that time, I think he deserves appropriate
blame for fostering the lowest common denominator, his,
and the resulting exodus of the list to keep it alive.

Anand has done a lot to get things going, has been very
hands-on and ready to make it happen. so while it is a
possibility Howard continues his strange manipulations
in the background, sowing doubt or whatever else, it is
still possible all this is going to be resolved in time,
that the list community (version 2) will get through it
and somehow a complete archive will come about. not too
practical though, short term, which is a real problem.

it may be a time for a doomsday CD mailing to make a
redundant distribution of the archives, and if Steve or
someone can get the .zip (and, ideally also the .MBOX
which Anand has) on a CD, it would be a way to keep the
archives around after PSU's archival space disappears
from the internet. there are free archive duplication
services, though I am not technical enough or broadband
enough to figure it out right now, though I have tried
previously. they may even take an .MBOX upload and then
mirror current archives, that's all they do, archives.

one option for Steve may be to localize the design-l
files, all on Quondam, so that only those linked to
are uploaded locally, though with the thousands of
links that may be brutal. to me this is an indication
of how seriously destructive these actions have been, and
why it should be petitioned through bureaucratic channels,
to make grievances known to apprentice Howard's masters.


  • Re: [design] re: the archive question
    • From: Anand bhatt
  • Replies
    Re: [design] Re: Design-L Archives Available, lauf-s
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