Re: Nature of Telusa

C. Kambhampati (
Tue, 22 Apr 1997 13:08:26 +0100 (BST)

I have not seen Bapa rao's or PALANA's post and the earlier versions of
Savithri Machiraju's posts - there is this black hole along with a
variable time-delay on the propagation of posts/articles etc. However,
reading a few of the posts (Savithri Machiraju's and others) a few points
come to mind (Others might have also alluded to it - I am not sure)

(1) TELUSA is a priviate mailing list.

(2) TELUSA didnot have a gate-way to SCIT initially (but this was added
    later on)

(3) TELUSA cannot take over any public forum like SCIT since TELUSA is a
    strictly private entity. And as such cannot be a replacement for SCIT
    - I am surprised that the exact opposite could be infered from Bapa
    Rao's and PALANA's posts (they have been around for ages now and
    surely realise this - Unless words are being put intheir mouths)

(4) Cross-posts do occur (because of (2)) and they
     are pretty minimal (and good for the souls of the masses! 8-() ). 

(5) Because of (1) everything else doesnot matter.

(6) Repeat (5).


On Tue, 22 Apr 1997, Savithri Machiraju wrote:

> Since Sreenivas garu referred to the "black hole" to which posts on 
> Friday and Saturday disappeared, I conclude that that's where my reply
> Friday also went, where I responded to Palana garu and Bapa Rao garu.  
> Unfortunately I did not save that reply (now I know better!) so will try 
> again.
> First, I want to thank Palana garu and Bapa Rao garu for responding.  I 
> am sorry that you were upset, and I am also glad that you expressed your 
> displeasure immediately, rather than trying to suppress your feelings.  
> Feelings that are suppressed (even from "good intentions" such as not 
> wanting to cause a fuss) tend to fester and become more and more intense 
> the longer they go unexpressed.  This, as I said in my disappeared 
> posting, is my failing.  I do not in general like to speak (literally or 
> metaphorically, through posting) when I am irritated about something, as 
> I prefer to wait and see whether the feeling of irritation is transient 
> or of a more lasting nature.  This is what I was doing with this issue 
> also.  Now while this practice has the advantage of preventing hasty and 
> unnecessary exchanges, it has the disadvantage that, if the original 
> cause of the annoyance goes unaddressed or even increases over time, the 
> final expression may be stronger than an initial response.  This issue  
> (about the nature of Telusa) has been on my mind for many months now, 
> without any abatement of my reaction.  Hence I decided to speak out.
> The main points I got out of the previous two responses were, from Palana 
> garu, "What's wrong with cross-posting to SCIT?" and from Bapa Rao garu, 
> that "Not everyone has Usenet access (to get SCIT)".  So the gist of both 
> these responses is that Telusa is essentially SCIT for those without 
> Usenet access.  That's fine.  That's what I wanted clarified.
> Two questions out of curiosity, though.  Until very recently (as recently
> as the moderation discussion on SCIT) there was an electonic digest
> version of SCIT for those without Usenet access (this was the one where,
> to help you remember, they decided to ban anonymous posts).  What happened
> to this?  Did this now go defunct?  And has Telusa officially become the
> replacement?  (Never having been a subscriber to this, I don't know the
> answers).  And if Telusa has now become its replacement, isn't this a
> different purpose than the avowed one when Telusa was started?  This is
> the reason for my confusion. 
> To get to some particulars of Bapa Rao garu's reply, I am not accusing 
> anyone on this list of any untoward or unethical behavior. The words 
> "collusion and conspiracy" referred to allegations by others, and  
> probably should have been in quotes to prevent any confusion.  I am 
> *definitely* not saying any vote-rigging or anything of a similar nature 
> went on; if it came across as though as I did, I apologize.
> The point is, there is a difference between someone saying:  "H'mm, the 
> people I need to talk to are all conveniently assembled here, so let me 
> take the opportunity to discuss some other issues, even though they have 
> nothing to do with the purpose for which we have assembled"; and: "OK, 
> now that we're all here out of observation, let's get down to our real 
> business, which is the improvement of SCIT".  I have been assuming (or 
> giving the benefit of doubt) all along, that it was the former situation 
> that we had here; and that being so, these digressions (as I viewed them) 
> on SCIT matters would stop once that business was taken care of, and we 
> would revert back to "the regularly scheduled programming."  Only we 
> never have reverted, and what to me were digressions became the bulk of 
> the posts.  By digressions I do not just mean discussion on the structure 
> of SCIT, but posts that are germane to SCIT but not to a literature list.
> Now, if a group of people, however large or small, decided that SCIT has 
> changed in a way that they don't like, and they decide to form a mailing 
> list to discuss essentially the same things, but limited to an approved 
> membership list, there is nothing wrong with that.  If they start a list 
> for some other specific purpose, and then decide to expand the  charter 
> of that list to other topics, there is nothing wrong with that, either.  
> But if they start a list with a specific stated purpose, and the 
> discussions then veer toward a whole host of topics which are not within 
> that stated purpose, then I don't see why they should be surprised when 
> someone raises the question of what the nature of that list is now.
> There is, for example, a writing newsgroup on Usenet. Over the past two 
> or three years, a lot of new people started posting there, completely 
> changing the nature of the group.  Many of the old-timers felt that the 
> group was no longer focussed on writing, but was spending too much time 
> on extraneous issues.  The new members replied that the majority of the 
> group *as it was now constituted* had no objection to the present topics, 
> so there was no reason to "get back on focus."  Some of the old members 
> then started a mailing list which was more specifically focussed on 
> writing.  Clearly there is much overlap between the list and the 
> newsgroup.  But the the list has never felt the need to post its contents 
> in its entirety to the newsgroup.  From time to time someone posts either 
> bemoaning the lack of writing focus of the newsgroup or asking for a more 
> writing-oriented resource.  The poster is then directed to the mailing 
> list.  In fact, the subscription information is part of the FAQ of the 
> group.  This seems to me to be very similar to what happened here.  
> Sreenivas garu mentions the Ghantasala list among others, and so did I, 
> to point out that the members of those lists don't apparently feel the 
> need to post their contents to SCIT (even though they would be 
> appropriate, as being part of Telugu culture), so why do the Telusa 
> members.  Sreenivas garu says it was because when Telusa was formed, most 
> of the regular posters to SCIT left, and SCIT suffered as a consequence.  
> But it is the nature of Usenet groups to evolve over time.  If the Telusa 
> members felt sufficiently disenchanted with SCIT to leave, then why are 
> they still worrying about it?  Palana garu asks what is wrong with cross-   
> posting Telusa to SCIT.  Well, aside from the fact that it violates the 
> spirit, if not the letter, of the new moderation policy (no cross-posts 
> from other groups; so Telusa gets off the hook by virtue of being a list, 
> and not a group), the answer is contained in Bapa Rao garu's reply.  He 
> states that Telusa is a mailing list that people can join by invitation 
> only.  Exactly!  This means that it is a _private_ list.  (If privacy were 
> not an issue, why make it invitation-only?)  Is there not a contradiction 
> in saying we are holding a private conversation among members, but doing 
> so in a public forum?  If a child brings a pile of party invitations to a 
> classroom and proceeds to hand them out to some, but not all, of the 
> children present, we can all see the rudeness involved.  Why can we not 
> see the analogy to references to "fellow Telusa-ers", etc. on SCIT? Now, 
> someone is going to point out that Telusa members are not holding a 
> private conversation, because they are quite willing to respond to 
> comments on SCIT from non-Telusa members.  Yes, and this is where I get 
> completely lost.  If people want to post their articles to SCIT in order 
> to elicit a response from SCIT readers who are not Telusa members, then 
> what is the purpose of having a Telusa list?  The only viable answer I 
> can see is Bapa Rao garu's, that it is for the benefit of those without 
> Usenet access.  Fine, but that's not what I was told was the purpose of 
> Telusa.  To address Sreenivas garu's comment on this point, if the 
> desire is to "improve" SCIT, surely the best way is to stay within it and 
> do whatever it takes (posting articles, changing the group's guidelines) 
> to make it better?
> Both Sreenivas garu and Palana garu raised the question of why I don't 
> post.  Again I'll have to give a little history here.  When Telusa was 
> first started, for a few months it was dominated by discussions of a 
> highly classical nature.  While I enjoy things like samasyA pUraNa very 
> much, I am not qualified to participate actively in such things, not 
> having the command over the language to do so.  When the list moved on to 
> other topics where I felt both willing and able to post, it was more or 
> less concurrent with all the digressions I have mentioned.  I honestly 
> did not know where it was appropriate to post any more.  I prefer to post 
> to a literature list, because I am aware that these matters are not of 
> general interest to SCIT.  But I did not know if the list really was just 
> for literature discussions any more, or if there was another agenda (For 
> example, I don't know why the list operators allowed the formation of 
> another Usenet newsgroup on Telugu language and literature to go forward, 
> without pointing out that there was no need to form such a group, as 
> there was a mailing list devoted to just this purpose).  As for SCIT, it 
> was first going through its various throes, and, when those were over, I 
> was caught in the dilemma of the duplication of Telusa.  On the one hand, 
> I felt that I was duped into joining an action to which I would not have 
> agreed had I known about it; on the other hand, I did not want to judge 
> anyone hastily, and without giving them a chance to clarify their 
> position.  Others may not feel so paralyzed by indecision.  Very well.  
> This is again my personal idiosyncracy or shortcoming, whichever you want 
> to call it.  Moreover, I had no trouble convincing myself that the 
> members of Telusa and SCIT could get along quite well without my pearls 
> of wisdom.  (It is kind of you to talk about my "eminence", Sreenivas 
> garu, but unless you take a very small pond -- say, bathtub size -- I 
> can't be considered a big fish).
> Sreenivas garu raises an important point about disappointment. I am not 
> personally acquainted with the regular posters here (except for briefly 
> meeting Veluri Venkateswara Rao garu many years ago at a TANA 
> conference), and have had sporadic email contact with only a couple.  
> However, like Sreenivas garu, I have developed a great respect for many of 
> you from your postings both on SCIT and Telusa.  So you can imagine the 
> disappointment I felt while observing many of these activities.  One can 
> only be disappointed in those one respects.  There are several regular 
> posters to SCIT, for example, who could not disappoint me, because I do 
> not have any expectations of them.
> Finally, Bapa Rao garu raises the question of the appropriateness of 
> this discussion on the mailing list.  There were three reasons why I 
> thought I could raise this issue here:  (1) I thought a discussion on the 
> nature and purpose of a mailing list naturally belonged on the list 
> itself; (2) I thought this topic was at least as appropriate as other 
> topics which were posted to the list; and (3)  I thought this a 
> discussion that would be better conducted on Telusa than on SCIT.
> However, since, from the three responses so far, I have gathered that 
> that Telusa is a de facto replica of SCIT for those without Usenet 
> access, I have got the answer I was looking for. If I choose to post 
> anything, it will be to SCIT, as that seems the appropriate forum.  Since 
> this has been a long response, in which I hope I have addressed the 
> issues raised by the three people who replied to my query, I do not want 
> to take up the list's time on this topic any longer.  If any one wants to 
> pursue the discussion (especially those who feel it is inappropriate to 
> the list), I request them to do so via email.
> Thank you Palana garu, Bapa Rao garu, and Sreenivas garu for your 
> responses.  
> Savithri Machiraju