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- Ezra Pound discussion list of the University of Maine


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Jonathan Morse <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Ezra Pound discussion list of the University of Maine <[log in to unmask]>
Sat, 24 Jan 1998 16:58:40 -0500
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At 03:17 PM 1/24/98 -0500, Sylvester Pollet wrote:
>        Why is it so difficult for people to keep the instructions they get
>when they join the list? Why is it necessary to repeat this info on the
>average of once a week?
Answer: because people are human and fallible. Two practical corollaries:
1. That's why unmoderated lists usually disappoint expectation, drowning in
off-subject chitchat (like Emweb, a Dickinson list) or turning into the
boring monopoly of a few bandwidth hogs (like Eliot-L). A newbie to
EPound-L, I've been happily surprised by the high quality of the posts.
Yes, we've just been hit by three consecutive listserv posts from the same
person, followed by an unnecessary rhetorical question. But veterans of
other lists will understand that that really isn't a bad case of static.
2. A list moderator myself, I sometimes find myself thinking, "Don't these
people KNOW what a listserv is?" And then I think of _The Cantos_, with its
implicit expectation that of course any fool is equally acquainted with
Egyptian hieroglyphics and the Great Lakes policies of President Fillmore.
That may be an especially interesting thing to think about this year, the
bicentenary of _Lyrical Ballads_. What do you think: can it be that in ten
years our kids are going to regard Pound the way young people regarded Pope
in, say, 1808, and for the same intelligible and not serious reasons?
Jonathan Morse
Department of English
University of Hawaii at Manoa
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