When I post my stupid idea to the [Emily] Dickinson mailing list, I can't see how people are taking it. So, I turn up the volume. Still no response? Better pump up the invective another couple of notches. In order to get any response at all, I learn to become quite obnoxious. And so another jerk is born.
Don't get me wrong. I love mailing lists. I just don't like watching myself join the Legion of A- Holes. ("America's Fastest-Growing Social Club.") At least not on purpose. How to avoid it? Recognize that if no one has responded to the reasonable points you made, it's probably not because they're boneheads.
It may be a sign that this particular group happens not to share your interest on this one point. Or it may be that you wrote it badly. Or it may be that they're too busy this week to spend the time responding, which may mean that your message, through bad luck, will fall forever out of their circle of attention.
Yelling isn't going to help, and calling them stupid freakin' a-holes probably isn't going to direct their minds to your issues. So, take your finger off the caps lock and back away slowly before you become an even bigger jerk than you began as this morning. (The Causes and Cure of Online Hostility)
There are two basic forms of information on the Web: databases and jokes. [...]
The difference in the two forms isn't just in whether the information is expected or not. (Databases and Jokes)
To date, he's penned three other columns — columns that I specifically judge not worth linking. In one, he takes an ill-conceived jump into a debate with The Age of Spiritual Machines about the nature of thinking! The nature of personhood, in a "business and beyond" column. Waaaayy beyond ;).
Apparently, David Weinberger gets a lot of editorial latitude. He is of course famous in other contexts.