[ RadSafe ] Please do not feed the trolls...

Carl Willis willis.219 at osu.edu
Wed Jul 16 12:31:58 CDT 2008

RADSAFE is a great technical resource, and on the occasions that I have participated here I have been rewarded with well-informed, helpful responses.

However, the list has a real problem with focus--evidenced most clearly by an inability to deal with trolls.  These tend to be "policy trolls" who want to bicker about the political issues relating in some way to radiation.  Actually, the problem is not so much the trolls themselves but the few loudmouths who feel they are duty-bound to engage the provocations.  I appreciate Marcel's attempts to shut down low-information / off-topic threads.  Nonetheless, our signal-to-noise ratio has been abysmal!

The rules say the list is "open to all points of view on radiation protection issues."  That's as it should be, of course.  Nonetheless, I think we ought to have a statement right on top declaring the focus of RADSAFE to be the objective and technical aspects of radiation protection and discouraging the political repartee.  On this forum, the political stuff tends to be low-information and flagrantly trollish.  No doubt policy is important, but I think there are other venues more appropriate.  If the policy trolls think they've got cogent, well-informed arguments, I'd suggest they write diaries on one of the major political blogs, where this stuff is in its element and can be better judged on its merits.

-Carl Willis


Carl Willis
Nuclear Engineering Program
The Ohio State University
(505) 412-3277
willis.219 at osu.edu

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