archive: Re: SETI Chip Cohen is NOT anon.

Re: SETI Chip Cohen is NOT anon.

Michael T. Shinn ( (no email) )
Sun, 01 Nov 1998 19:02:12 +0000

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David Ocame wrote:
> Michael T. Shinn wrote:
> >
> > wrote:
> > >
> > > Whoever this Ariel Sputz is, what a coward.
> > >
> > > Chip, I know that I don't need to support you, because you are a pro. But no-
> > > one in their right mind would believe what this anon has said.
> > >
> > > Bob Cutter, I vote you take this list closed, so there can be no more
> > > anonymous posts. Look what has happened, first a major furor from a nothing
> > > hoax. Second, one of the lists professionals is slandered by another anon.
> > >
> > > The standards of scientific discourse need to be upheld.
> >
> > Not to mention the list was spammed, another reason to close it to non
> I think part of the problem is that the 'hits' list was hacked into. was
> it not?

According to the press release, that was their preception. But because,
the term "hacked" is used too often in the wrong context it does not
mean much to me (the proper term, IMHO, would have been "cracked" but
"hacked" has been hijacked by the vernacular now that I've grown tired
of belaboring the point *sigh*).

Regardless, I couldn't speculate on the nature of the post to the HITS
list, sincee I have no knowledge of the details of it. The post could
have been a trivially easy thing that for anon to do, that was a
consequence of how the list was setup, or it could have been something
complex. I vote for the former, experience has taught me that its
always something simple but I don't know. And its not my point to get
into a discussion of that or take the list off topic with that
(although, I would be happy to discuss it off line if need be, this is
my area of specialization so perhaps I could help in preventing future
attacks on the HITS list.)

Neverthless, my point was that its always prudent to take appropriate
precautions to keep a list from being either attacked, spammed or posted
to by non-subscribers. Im not aware of any detrimental effects to the
openness of a list to do these things, it just keeps the spam and noise
out. If you want to post to a list, you have to subscribe to it. :-)

I am not for moderation of this list, because it would only be used as
foil by the fringe elements which would claim that their "research" was
being conspired against and kept out of the open debate. I don't relish
the idea of having to read this nonsense, but I don't think its wise to
close the list or moderate it either.

--Michael T. Shinn