articles | gallery of plants | blog | tech blog | plant profiles | patents | mailing lists | top stories | links | shorturl service | tom clothier's archive0
Gallery of Plants
Tech Blog
Plant Profiles
Mailing Lists
    Search ALL lists
    Search help
    Subscription info
Top Stories
sHORTurl service
Tom Clothier's Archive
 Top Stories
New Trillium species discovered

Disease could hit Britain's trees hard

Ten of the best snowdrop cultivars

Plant protein database helps identify plant gene functions

Dendroclimatologists record history through trees

Potato beetle could be thwarted through gene manipulation

Hawaii expands coffee farm quarantine

Study explains flower petal loss

RSS story archive

RE: OT: 'SHOUTING' in e-mail


Well, when I started to get involved in this online stuff about 20 or so
years ago, use of all caps was considered to be shouting, and use of all
lowercase was considered to be in bad taste. Use of caps for emphasis was
OK, but no message was considered to be important enough to be in all caps.
There were other conventions as well. For instance, a word that would
normally be italicized was preceded and followed by an underscore ( _Iris
virginica_ ). The degree symbol was represented by a ^o (carat, lower case
o). There were a few others that don't quite come to mind at this time, but
certainly do when I type them. Oh yeah! When you typed a word, and wanted to
indicate it was an error, but not delete if (if you could--not all systems
allowed one to do so) you would have the word followed by the proper number
of ^h's followed by the correction.  Looked like this:  "Out darn ^h^h^h^h
damn spot!".

Back then, everything was just straight ASCII, just to ASCII 127--none of
this upper ASCII stuff. Certainly messaging has evolved, but most of the
rules, in polite conversation, have not. Today we have RTF and HTML formats
which can allow you to do marvelous things should you wish. Unfortunately,
most people seem to misuse them. Most of the things done amount to nothing
more than eye candy at the least, and make the messages hard to read, bigger
to store and download.

Another thing that has not changed is the crawling out of the woodwork of
the police when someone violates one or more of these unwritten rules of the
Internet. Normally, I just suffer in silence and put up with the fools on
both sides--those that do the dirty deed as well as those that call them
upon doing it.

It is unfortunate that those who used the ALL CAPS method left the list--I
am sure they will leave many others as well if they do not learn the
cultural taboos that are in force. They will also need to become more
conversant with their computer an learn how to make it work for them, rather
than against them. Windows includes several features that help the visually
impaired, as does the Mac OS. There is no reason that these folk could not
be using them, other than ignorance of what is available, which may not be
directly their fault. I have made many changes to systems for people who do
have a problem with their sight to help them read the screen better, though
I do remember one woman who refused to have anything less than a 640 x 480
resolution on a 19" screen, no matter what I showed her--I just wrote her
off as being a bit whacko, and anytime I had to work on her machine changed
the resolution to something I could stand and work with. So the path does
indeed go both ways. The people need to want to learn, and the others need
to be able to teach.

No. Virginia, Zone 6/7

-----Original Message-----
From: []On Behalf Of
Sent: Thursday, May 01, 2003 11:58 AM
Subject: Re: [iris] OT: 'SHOUTING' in e-mail

Who decided that using all caps was shouting?

Is there a rule against using all caps on iris-talk?

What about those who use all lower case letters and don't even capitalize
personal pronoun 'i?'  Nobody seems to get bent out of shape over this.

Since I am a librarian, our library has a substantial Large Print collection
for people
whose eyesight is failing or is otherwise impaired.  It is amazing to find
that there are
a number of people who check out Large Print who have no problems with
vision at
all, so there are readers 'who swing both ways,' and it doesn't bother them.
We also
have 'talking books' for people whose hearing is failing.  People whose
hearing is
normal check out those, too.

So, the point of all of this:

All of us should try to be aware that there are those among us who have
challenges and be considerate of those conditions.

If you start to read a post in all caps or know a message is going to be in
all caps (or
all lower case,) and it is going to upset you, then delete it and let
somebody who is
not bothered by such conventions answer the post.

Saying that the use of all caps is shouting is a bunch of hooey, and to deny
the use
of caps to print handicapped people who want to use the computer is just not

Walter Moores
Enid Lake, MS 7/8 (Watching the bloom season decline.) :-(

To sign-off this list, send email to with the

To sign-off this list, send email to with the

 © 1995-2017 Mallorn Computing, Inc.All Rights Reserved.
Our Privacy Statement
Other Mailing lists | Author Index | Date Index | Subject Index | Thread Index