10 Commandments of FoRKposting.

I Find Karma (adam@cs.caltech.edu)
Tue, 15 Apr 97 18:50:56 PDT

So I've been thinking lately... what makes an ideal FoRKpost?
Is there a "10 Commandments of FoRKposting" that was handed
on the mountain to Rohit, but never articulated until now?

I think so. And I'm ready to let this cat out of the bag.
Nothing this good stays underground forever.

Basically, if you read something good, interesting, or worthwhile, send
a note to FoRK@xent.w3.org, obeying the Ten Commandments of FoRKposting.
They are....

Commandment 1: Thou shalt use a meaningful Subject line to tag your
message, so that when we go back through the archives to find your
contribution, we can actually find it.

Commandment 2: Thou shalt forward only new bits. Most humor is not new
bits; if you forward old bits to FoRK, you must pay the penalty of
finding new bits within 24 hours, or suffer the fate of being tagged a
97%er by your peers.

Commandment 3: Thou shalt reference where you found the bits. This may
either be a citation or a Web link. Note that FoRK likes to hear
rumors, too, as long as you vouch for your source being at least as
reliable, say, as Robert X. Cringely.

Commandment 4: Thou shalt know who the real Robert X. Cringely is. And
thou shalt know the difference between the various Robert X. Cringelies
of the world. (As a bonus, thou shalt also know the difference between
the Adam Rifkins of the world... :)

Commandment 5: Thou shalt only forward the relevant bits and/or clue.
Don't forward to FoRK 400 Meg of garbage, but likewise, don't just post
a URL and expect everyone to click on it. I repeat: forward only the
relevant bits and/or clue.

Commandment 6: Thou shalt FoRKpost in a format that is readable by
intelligent human beings. Garbage spewed by Internet Explorer does not
count. Creative spelling is allowed, but only if it adds humor.
Remember that humor is rarely new bits.

Commandment 7: Thou shalt comment on any bits and/or clue you forward.
Don't just send us raw bits, because we are all well read. Send a
paragraph or two about the bits. To quote the brilliant Dan Connolly,

The paragraph or two of personal analysis is the essential
part. Without that, a "hey, read this!" message is nothing
more than a commercial. In this age of information overload,
let's do each other the favor of information _reduction_.

So give us commentary, or stay quiet.

Commandment 8: Old bits plus commentary equals new bits, so you can
break commandment 2 as long as you add commentary.

Commandment 9: Flaming is only new bits when it includes new
commentary. Flaming of companies, products, and people is allowed (and
encouraged) on FoRK, as long as you give intelligent reasons for your
flaming. Therefore, saying something like "Micro$oft is lame" is not
allowed, but saying something like

Why, oh, why do I still use this shitcan OS Win95 when even
the M$ lovers among us cry out NT4.0? The little bugger was
slurping data to a telnet log as I was rushing aboard this
flight, only to have its telephone cord yanked and put to
sleep. Once airborne, I wake it, the display comes up, it
'burps' -- flashes the screen, makes violent noises, usually
reinstalls PC Card devices on the pessimistic assumption
everything always changes -- and nothing.

is okay.

Commandment 10: Thou shalt always say it with style. FoRK is a class
act, so let's keep the FoRKposts classy, okay?

Notes about the 10 Commandments of FoRKposting:
o 97% of FoRKposts ignore one or more of the 10 Commandments of
FoRKposting. That doesn't necessarily mean we like it.
o Of course, 97% of FoRKposts do follow one or more of the 10
Commandments of FoRKposting. Isn't that special?
o The unwritten (until now) Eleventh Commandment is that Tim Byars
shalt break at least one commandment with every post, 100% of the
time, thereby breaking not only some commandment, but also the 97%
rule, thereby disrupting the very fabric of the FoRK known universe.
(Actually, he comes close to breaking all ten commandments with
some posts, a feat unrivaled on FoRK. :)


What is the difference between a taxidermist and a tax collector?
The taxidermist takes only your skin.
-- Mark Twain