[SASAG] Proprietary Formats on Public Mailing Lists -- Was: Re: System Admin Job opportunity

Lamont Granquist lamont at scriptkiddie.org
Fri Aug 31 14:22:22 PDT 2007

I just find religious arguments boring.  Its probably been 15 years since 
the first time I saw this argument and Microsoft Word is still around, 
still a proprietary format and people are still posting word docs 
publically.  Arguing about it accomplishes nothing and just damages the 
signal-to-noise ratio.  Similarly, flaming people over top-posting or not 
trimming quotes is another popular tilting-at-windmills issue.  And if I 
wanted to go really old school, the use of .sig lines with more than three 
lines of text annoys a lot of people.  Then there's the fact that posting 
proprietary formats to public mailing lists really seems like a list 
adminstrative and freedom of speech issue.  If it was the government, like 
the IRS, posting in proprietary formats where no free cross-platform 
reader existed, then you'd have an excellent argument.  Otherwise the free 
marketplace of ideas and/or the list admin should dictate weither or not 
posting proprietary formats is acceptable and not some self-important 
Nettiquette police.

And I say that as someone who hates word documents and wouldn't bother 
opening a job description posting that was posted in doc format.

On Fri, 31 Aug 2007, Robin Battey wrote:
> Mohsen:
> The position in question is for a fairly hardcore Microsoft-run
> environment.  While I don't particularly like word documents myself, I
> think it's entirely appropriate in this context.  I'm a *nix admin, not a
> linux admin, so I just don't bother reading such postings.
> Cheers!
> -robin
> On Fri, Aug 31, 2007 at 01:27:46PM -0700, Mohsen Banan-vendors wrote:
>>>>>>> On Fri, 31 Aug 2007 13:18:48 -0700, "Scott McDermott" <scottm at octaldream.com> said:
>>   Scott> I think it's fairly safe to say that this is stuff we all are aware of.
>> It is what people do that matters.
>> Not what they think they are aware of.
>>   Scott> That said, the use of a .doc to post a position in a Windows environment is
>>   Scott> hardly precedent sharing. Since this list is for all types of system
>>   Scott> administrators, including those that use Word, I chose to forward it on.
>> Again, I encourage you to refrain from posting
>> attachments in proprietary formats to public
>> mailing lists.
>> -- Mohsen Banan                   http://mohsen.banan.1.byname.net/
>>    Neda Communications, Inc.      http://www.neda.com/
>>    3610 164th Place SE            mailto:vendors at mohsen.banan.1.byname.net
>>    Bellevue, WA 98008             tel: +1-425-644-8026
>>         U.S.A.                    fax: +1-425-644-2886
>>    Map and Driving Directions:    http://info.1-98008-5807-10.bywhere.net/
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> --
>                              Robin  Battey
>                            zanfur at zanfur.com
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