Tacos Subject Lines (Lack of value)

Robert Bruninga bruninga at usna.edu
Thu Dec 20 17:56:05 CST 2007

> Plenty of fascinating things have been posted, 
> and a few that bored me to tears - but I have 
> not complained about the latter. Many a 
> "this is cute" link has lead me to some very 
> interesting information...

I am not complaining.  I am giving posters of "this is neat"
type of messages some valuable feedback about the best way to
convey their interest.
It will help them get read by others istead of ignored on sight.

Instead of "Look at this".  It is a far more valuable message
and one that will likely get looked at instead of trashed if the
sender said "look at this cheap PC" or "look at this cheap

For his extra 100 milliseconds effort, then the 100 of us that
receive that email are saved valuable time if we are -not
interested- in a cheap PC or in a cheap router.  Instead we
either waste our time finding out what "look at this" is
actually about, or we save the time and ignore the message,
meaning the sender is ignored.  I doubt that being ignored is
what the sender intended.  Thus, my feedback to help them see
what their messages look like to the recepient.

> Perhaps if we instituted rigorous posting guidelines, 
> then nothing of interest would be posted at  all.  

Everything should still be posted.  I am just asking for the
common courtesy to include useful information for the recepient
in the subject line or in the sentence suggesting that they take
their valuable time to go follow your posted link.  Wasteful
come-ons like "this is neat"... "Look at this" are more for spam
and the gullable, not for friends trying to share useful

> If you want "value" - why not pay for it? 

The valuable feedback I am offering to those senders I am
offering at no charge.  They can take it and maybe their posting
will be read, or they can ignore it and their messages will
continue to be deleted on sight, because they contian no useful
information as to what they might contain.

> If what I'm interested in puts you to sleep that's fine
> - just add my address to your killfile...

I may or may not be interested.  But senders should do the
courtesy of adding the one or two word clue as to what they are
"interested in" instead of clueless come-ons like "wow, look at
this".  That does not give the recepient any clue about what
"they are interested in" and leads them on a wild goose chase to
find out.

Just trying to improve the signal to noise ratio...


> Robert Bruninga wrote:
> > Tacistas, Please, this is nothing personal at all, just an
> > appeal...
> >
> > This tacos list is notorious for ambiguous posts with catchy
> > subject lines but with no hints at all as to the real info
> > "value" contained.  These Tacos messages could be improved
> > if the -bottom-line- value-to-the-reader is included in the
> > subject line.
> >
> > As it is, everyone  on the list has to follow the links,
> > the entire page and maybe then follow additional links to
> > out what the thing is all about.  
> >
> > On this one, [Re: A good use for an old PC and two NICs] all
> > find is a single board uP.  I see nothing in particular of
> > interest to me (there are dozens of these out there) and I
> > cannot find anything that makes sense to the subject line.
> > Sure, I could invest another 5 minutes of my time to dig and
> > and try to piece together what the sender was trying to
> > but I don't have that time...
> >
> > The AMRAD Tacos list is the worst list in this regard too.
> > Subject lines like "Look at this".  "This is cute", "Wow,
> > idea", and so forth are quite useless unless the intent is
> > waste and consume the maximum amount of time of all Tacos
> > members.  If it is "cute" say why it is cute so we have an
> > what you have in mind and whether the link is worth
> >
> > I still don't see where the "good use for an old PC and two
> > NICS" is on this page.  I'd have to read the entire fine
> > to find out... Rememebr, I can be pretty dense...
> >
> > Please. Put the "bottom line" in the subject line.  In this
> > case, "what was the good use?" so that I can tell from the
> > subject line if this message is worth reading and if the
> > and sub links are worth the time to follow.
> >
> > I made this complaint a year ago on Tacos, and was told by
> > poster that he does not have time to edit the subject line.
> > Well, seems unfair then to place a greater burden of time on
> > of the rest of us to take even more time, multiplied by the
> > number of people on this list to find out what the link is
> > for.?
> >
> > I guess we all get crodgedy as we get older.  Mine is
> >
> > I think we need to remember that if we want people to share
> > interest and enthusiasm, then we need to take the extra 3
> > seconds to write a subject line that is meaningful to the
> > user, who must evauate its content "out of the blue" in
> > 500 ms or delete it as another pig-in-a-poke...
> >
> > Just 2 cents on this sunny beautiful day...
> >
> > Bob, Wb4APR
> >
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> > Tacos at amrad.org
> > http://www.amrad.org/mailman/listinfo/tacos
> >   
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