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forsburg at molbiol.ox.ac.uk forsburg at molbiol.ox.ac.uk
Tue Aug 10 02:35:29 EST 1993

There has been a fair amount about participation, on the
net and at meetings.  I have been thinking about this, and
remembered a (woman) colleague who explained why she wasnt
going to one of the "big meetings" in our field.  She said,
"it will be full of the same men showing off for each other, 
and I have better things to do than watch them perform."
I wonder how many women AND men are put off by the loud
and self-congratulatory  performers, whether at meetings or on 
the net?  I know I dont particularly enjoy having to wade
through someone's "look-at-me-I'm-so-smart" contributions,
whether live or electronic.   If I have something to 
say, I will do, but I dont feel compelled to let my voice
be heard for its own sake and I bet a lot of you are the same.

Could that partially explain apparent under-participation?  
I think there are many men as well as women who are frequent readers 
but not frequent posters in newsgroups and in the silent majority at
meetings, and a lot of them are people who only contribute if they 
think they have something to add rather than inflicting their 
egos on the rest of us.  Arent those contributions likely to
be more valuable?

Shouldnt we encourage quality, rather than quantity?  

just a thought for discussion,


forsburg at molbiol.ox.ac.uk
then forsburg at salk-sc2.sdsc.edu

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