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[liberationtech] Liberationtech List Reminder

José María Mateos chema at
Thu Feb 2 16:30:15 PST 2017

On Thu, Feb 02, 2017 at 04:08:06PM -0800, Yosem Companys wrote:
>That's a great idea, José María. So you would like to see a new
>mailing list? What would you suggest we call it? Miscellaneous?

I've never administered any mailing list of this size (I think the 
largest had something like 15 people), so everything I say should be 
taken with a grain of salt. Some other projects out there have 
essentially two well-differentiated mailing lists: -announcements and 
-discussion. Jobs, events, CfPs and related material goes to the first 
one, everything else to the second one.

>We are in the process of building a community blog for Liberationtech
>that would allow up/down voting of topics, polling, and other
>capabilities. Word Press is the gold standard, but it does not allow
>for the other features I mentioned. Any suggestions on what CMS or
>other software that we could use to accomplish this objective?

I think what you are describing is better accomplished by software like 
Discourse (, which is the discussion engine 
behind popular sites such as This, however, presents the 
danger of making the mailing list redundant (I prefer the mailing list 
format, but that is just a matter of preference; I understand other 
people prefer web-based systems).

>Another thing I have noticed is that, although we have a Twitter feed,
>we never really share or discuss any news on the mailing list. I
>actually think it is probably better that way. Subscriber-initiated
>discussions are usually more substantive and interesting. But perhaps
>we can integrate the Liberationtech list into a blog somehow in a way
>that shows more than just the last three tweets. Or maybe integrate
>Liberationtech's Paperli, which provides a summary of the day's
>Liberationtech news.

I'd love to read more discussions on the list. For one, I will try to 
send more news articles that I normally send somewhere else.

>There are also debates about moderation. Should every post be
>moderated? A while back, we took a vote, and we decided not to do that
>because it slows the process of conversation a lot. What we usually do
>is that if someone violates the site guidelines, we will issue a
>warning, and if a violation occurs again, the culprit is permanently
>moderated. In some cases, we will moderate an entire thread until
>cooler heads prevail.

I prefer unmoderated discussion, with some "benevolent dictator" 
stepping in from time to time if stuff heats up too much. I tend to 
think of moderated mailing lists as slow and ultimately boring; however, 
some moderated lists I follow (nettime, for instance) are incredibly 



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