FAQ for the Web Sociology List|
What is the purpose of this list?
What is Web Sociology?
You can discuss topics like gender, religion, sex, politics, personal growth, etc., online, with people from all over the world, all ages, male and female, parents and non-parents etc., and actively work to achieve synthesis by listening to different perspectives, disagreeing perhaps, and then learning from them.
Active web sociology occurs when people from Australia, Israel, Sweden, Japan, India, Canada, and the United States meet in an online community and find a synthesis in the way they view issues personally important to them.
There is also the reflective part: talking about social interactions and structures that actually occur on the web. We do that here a lot, too. Among the topics we have discussed in this vein are Prisoners on the Web and Drug Culture on the Web.
And there is an interactive part: real-life social trends are amplified on the web, and the web in turn influences our existing social ideas.
How do I know whether I am on-topic or not?
Members are free to wonder about things, whether they be issue-oriented or personal in nature. You can talk about what is on your mind and discover new ways of looking at things. That process of discovery is more important to me than the topic of conversation. And the emphasis is on the things people can discover when they treat eachother´s feelings with respect.
I am fascinated by the thoughtful interaction that takes place between people who meet by chance in an online environment. What wisdom will this specific combination of discussants define? Finding the answer is web sociology. :-)
What is a typical discussion like?
Recently, a discussion we had started out about design ethics, traveled on to ballet, then to New Orleans politics, and ended up at the NBA. :-)
And then I realized that the way discussions travel is web sociology, too. This list embraces that journey and recognizes that the journey is a group creation.
How much mail will I get?
Some of them are long because sometimes you can´t make a reasoned argument or tell a story in two paragraphs. I don´t have an opinion on the size of people´s posts. I am more interested in the way they think.
There is a digest version that will give you a few 32Ksized messages per day, so if you wish to subscribe via your work address, this might be the better option.
But it is my sincere recommendation that subscribers use their personal email addresses for this listespecially if they must report to a boss on how they are using their time.
Is there anything at all that is not permitted on this list?
If you include a link to a web site in a post, it should be to provide fuller editorial context for your philosophical point, or, perhaps if you find something side-splittingly funny, uniquely interesting, or helpful to another list member. But the website link should not be self-promotion for financial gain.
Reprint Permission Request Procedure
What about privacy?
A person´s revelation on The Web Sociology List might have professional reprecussions for those using the Web Design List to make professional contacts. It is a risk I must acknowledge, and that I hope members of Web Socks take into account when making a decision about what to post.
Although many find it therapeutic to talk about their personal emotions and receive support from our online community, you must make an "informed decision" about how much risk you are comfortable taking. These are just some of the ones that came up here. I wanted to mention them to new, and potential members, so they can have the benefit of the wisdom that was shared on the list before they came.
The Negative Stuff
I cannot anticipate all the situations that would come up. I can only think of situations mentioned by list members and things I have seen before in other online experiences that really bothered me.
If something I hadn´t thought of comes up, we will all deal with it then. So I am including some negative questions and answers for this purpose.
What would be better kept private and not posted to the list?
I do not judge people on those issues. They are none of my business, and none of anyone else´s business either.
I mention this because a list member once posted that the public display of romantic sentiments between two married people irrevocably harmed another list she was on, and I have no intention of letting anything harm this list.
What would get me kicked off this list?
I have no intention of kicking anyone off. I have no intention of creating an atmosphere where people are afraid that if they have an opinion on a topic, they could get kicked off, but there are realities I have to consider. I hope everyone would agree that they would not want to be subjected to these types of dysfunctional behavior:
Similarly, if a person uses the N-word in an agressive, abusive manner to signify a racist sentiment towards another list member, I will throw them off.
Violent Sexual Fantasies
Unsubscribing a member without his or her knowledge
When people join Web Sociology, they do so to discuss what is on their minds. They do not join to be exposed to sociopaths, so, as moderator, it is my duty to assure people who are considering joining our community that I will be vigilant in dealing with dysfunctional behavior when it is exhibited.
However, an intelligent discussion about sociopaths on the web would be something that we would probably discuss at some point, and I draw a huge difference between being a sociopath and talking about the sociopathic communities on the web in an intelligent, thoughtful manner.
If anyone has any further questions, they are welcome to send me private mail at email@example.com.
If you decide to give us a try, welcome to Web Sociology. :-) top of page
You may subscribe at topica.com
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