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Subject: Re: Top-Posting, Vis-a-Vis Last Night's Fuss

Re: Top-Posting, Vis-a-Vis Last Night's Fuss

From: Matthew Caron <matt_at_mattcaron.net>
Date: Mon, 27 Aug 2007 07:42:49 -0400

KANE BROLIN wrote:
> Christopher is correct. In business e-mail contexts, where I've been for
> more than ten years, top-posting is very much the norm. Though I understand
> the reasoning behind this rule now, I was floored by how vehement this
> discussion has been and how strongly people feel about this particular
> topic.

As an amateur historian of this (since it shocked me as well, only from
the other direction), it seems like:

- Hackers and engineers inline post (likely because of the increased
precision and self-referential nature of the resultant message).

- Business wankers, neophytes and newbies top post, usually leaving the
whole previous thread (for context?) - or worse, write something like "I
agree", deleting the whole thread, in which half a dozen questions were
asked. The reasons for this vary, but in my estimation, the rationale
ranks roughly in this order:
(1) They are communicating with people who don't understand inline
posting and cannot follow it.
(2) They themselves cannot follow inline posted conversations.
(3) Top posting is faster for them to write (aka - they are lazy).
(4) They don't know how to get their mail program to include the
previous message when they hit reply.
(5) Their mail program sucks and actually won't let t them include the
previous message when they hit reply.

-- 
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 ~~ Matt Caron ~~
Received on 2007-08-27

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