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A Kinder, Gentler Place

wysiwyg 22 May 00 - 02:24 PM
Wolfgang 22 May 00 - 04:45 AM
Little Neophyte 21 May 00 - 08:55 AM
bbelle 21 May 00 - 03:04 AM
GUEST,BluTrane 21 May 00 - 01:12 AM
Little Neophyte 21 May 00 - 12:29 AM
Rick Fielding 20 May 00 - 11:53 PM
Peter T. 20 May 00 - 07:51 PM
McGrath of Harlow 20 May 00 - 07:42 PM
McGrath of Harlow 20 May 00 - 07:41 PM
bbc 20 May 00 - 06:30 PM
Rick Fielding 20 May 00 - 03:43 PM
Jon Freeman 20 May 00 - 03:12 PM
Peter T. 20 May 00 - 02:23 PM
bbc 20 May 00 - 01:37 PM
paddymac 20 May 00 - 01:29 PM
bbelle 20 May 00 - 11:11 AM
Fortunato 19 May 00 - 03:07 PM
McGrath of Harlow 19 May 00 - 01:28 PM
GUEST,Will Horton 19 May 00 - 01:26 PM
L R Mole 19 May 00 - 01:00 PM
Peter T. 19 May 00 - 12:42 PM
Peg 19 May 00 - 11:15 AM
Mooh 19 May 00 - 07:08 AM
Racer 19 May 00 - 02:18 AM
DougR 19 May 00 - 01:21 AM
katlaughing 19 May 00 - 01:10 AM
Rick Fielding 19 May 00 - 01:03 AM
Peter Kasin 19 May 00 - 12:06 AM
Kelida 18 May 00 - 11:42 PM
GUEST 18 May 00 - 10:47 PM
GUEST,Will Horton 18 May 00 - 08:46 PM
Uncle_DaveO 18 May 00 - 06:10 PM
McGrath of Harlow 18 May 00 - 05:42 PM
Sean Belt 18 May 00 - 03:17 PM
Mooh 18 May 00 - 03:15 PM
GUEST,me 18 May 00 - 02:33 PM
Mrrzy 18 May 00 - 01:35 PM
Ringer 18 May 00 - 01:27 PM
black walnut 18 May 00 - 01:26 PM
Hollowfox 18 May 00 - 01:16 PM
McGrath of Harlow 18 May 00 - 01:01 PM
mactheturk 18 May 00 - 12:58 PM
bbelle 18 May 00 - 12:43 PM
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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: wysiwyg
Date: 22 May 00 - 02:24 PM


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Wolfgang
Date: 22 May 00 - 04:45 AM

Yes, Mudcat was a kinder and gentler place for me as well. No reason to go yet, just to read and post less and less. Another reason: Just take at look at the first few threads after the permathread on last Friday at 12.20 PM

BS: MORE!!! About Breasts!!!!
111
Why are guitars SEXY and banjos, not?
132
BS: MUDCAT TAVERN 2
86
BS: MEDICAL ALERT
10
Thought for the Day - May 19
6

Just do it.
24
BS: Your headstone
48
70s Blues Band suggestion wanted
9
BS: Mudcat Tavern Enterprise Part 4
25
How Has Hearme Enhanced Your Life
52

When did your 'folk' switch flip on?
78
New Member
6
BS: T.T.F.N
5
Funeral Tunes, songs that heal
42
Mudcat FAQ - Newcomer's Guide
64
Zilch!
4

A Kinder, Gentler Place
22

I still think I have a lot of common interests with the majority of posters, but I obviously haven't with the majority of postings.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Little Neophyte
Date: 21 May 00 - 08:55 AM

Moonchild, we need dreamers like you too.
It can help all of us mold into being a beautiful and magical "what is"

Thanks for creating this thread by sharing your thoughts and feelings.
Sincerely,
Bonnie


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: bbelle
Date: 21 May 00 - 03:04 AM

If it's any consolation, Einstein could not spell ...

I will never be content for "what is." I'm a dreamer ... always have been ... always will be.

Now ... I'll shut up and play my guitar ... Jenny


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: GUEST,BluTrane
Date: 21 May 00 - 01:12 AM

It's a Mean Old World -- Little Walter
Trouble in Mind
Nebraska --B. Springsteen
Positively 4th St. -- B. Dylan
I Asked for Water--Howling Wolf
Keg of Brandy -- R. O'Connel
Sally Gardens -- W.B. Yeats
Hellow Stanger -- Stoneman
Rank Strangers -- Stanley Brothers
Men With Broken Hearts -- H. Williams
It' Ain't Me Babe -- B. Dylan
Like a Rolling Stone -- Dylan
The River -- Springsteen
Gotta Tavel On
I Been Everywhere Man --H. Thompson

Listen to these songs and remember the words of the imortal Frank Zappa: "Shut up and play yer guitar."


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Little Neophyte
Date: 21 May 00 - 12:29 AM

What is, is all there is. Might as well work on being content with what is, for what is not, isn't.

As for spelling, what more can you do but the best you can. Spelling has always been one of my greatest challenges. The day I let that hold me back from posting would be a very sad day.

Little Neo


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 20 May 00 - 11:53 PM

You're a paragon of spelling virtue McGrath. One strange thing that's happened to me in my 2 years on Mudcat, is the dramatic improvement in my spelling, which has always been pretty erratic. Something else that I started noticing about a year and a half ago is my penchant for going into an odd kind of "slang" at times. ie: "ya gotta luv 'em, don't ya?" I've never written or talked like that before, but it's here in black and white every so often. Hope it's just laziness and not Demonic posession!

I doubt that Mudcat was ever "kinder or gentler", (I've checked) just much smaller and more folk-oriented. No one's found a better alternative though.

Rick


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Peter T.
Date: 20 May 00 - 07:51 PM

U r not the worst splr on the Madcut bi ane meens, McGrath, yoor wif iz having u onn. yors, Peter T.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 20 May 00 - 07:42 PM

And one error still got away...


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 20 May 00 - 07:41 PM

I wish there were some way to click back to see the Mudcat at some earlier date, to try to get a better appreciation of what is missing or different or not as good as it used to be.

As it is, I go back to particular past threads, or follow up a topic via the supersearch facility. (And that is something which is definitely a great advance and imnprovement.) And what I find is often really fascinating, and really moving sometimes. But I can't see that they are all that different from what we've got today, in between stuff that isn't so good.

I take it that the balance is changed, so that maybe there were lots of exciting threads going along at the same time, or fewer threads that get nowhere fast, or something like that.

As I said, we need a time travel facility to enable us to get back to the future.

"usually well-spelled" - yes, well I have to plead guilty here. My wife tells me she thinks I'm the worst offender on the Mudcat. I'm going to try to do better, starting right now, since I can see how that might be annoying to other people, as well as embarrassing to me. Now to proofread this post...

And now I think I've got rid of all the errors, touch wood... So here it goes for SUBMIT MESSAGE


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: bbc
Date: 20 May 00 - 06:30 PM

Rick,

You were one of the first people I noticed whose posts were always thoughtful, meaningful, & usually well-spelled. :) I still continue to respect you & enjoy your posts. The kind words are appreciated. I have no plan to give up the wonderful friendships I've made here; I just plan to pursue them privately.

love,

Barbara


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 20 May 00 - 03:43 PM

Well personally, I miss your presence here Barb. You are a wise and witty woman, and I wish you were still giving your opinions on the issues that come up here.

Rick


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 20 May 00 - 03:12 PM

Everytime I read this thread, I keep thinking of a song by the Singing Postman. This is all I can remember - must find the rest.

Jon

-------------------------------

But you can't keep living in the past
Though days were so grand
Little grey hairs may make you frown
But you can't keep living in your wedding gown
They were such wonderful days
Both for you and me
But they're gone gone, gone gone
Gone for evermore


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Peter T.
Date: 20 May 00 - 02:23 PM

I think it is certainly possible to get bored with certain things on Mudcat (same old, same old -- it is certainly possible to get sick of me, I do it all the time), but I don't see any loss of much of anything, just lots more other things added which clog up the lines occasionally. The tone has improved recently after a bad patch. If I were moonchild and one or two others, I would have left this place forever then, and never darkened its door again, but that is for other, very understandable, reasons.

But I check in, and, lo and behold, there are all kinds of good things going on, as ever. Lots of brand spanking new people, from Kent to Killaloe. We have a great Mudcat travel movie about to be underway across North America. Many songs being requested; obscure wrinkles of the folk/blues business being laundered in public; quirky threads; people getting together on line or off. So I remain puzzled.

Certainly when it was a lot younger it was possible even for people like me (folk novices) to make substantive contributions, simply by adding basic song lyrics that hadn't made it into the database, and chatting about good songs, and meeting people for the first time. But after 9,000+, that gets harder and the contributions shift. We have lots fewer threads about great campfire songs (of course it has been winter for awhile). Sure, some people are posting less than they used to: maybe they have learned to ration their time better -- when people start off on Mudcat, often they just go crazy here for awhile -- it is addictive as hell, a new community in creation! -- and then taper off. They seem to come back when something gets their attention: they are not driving threads themselves. Such is life. It will not solve all life's problems, and is not all the community everyone will have. But it seems to ramble on regardless.

Rhythm change is not bad either: some new people posting a lot, some others checking in occasionally, others using it as a resource. It is a long term thing, this kinder, gentler place (which it is in the scheme of things, heaven knows), I hope, partly kept going by the likes of you. I am personally rewarded by your presence, and by all that you do, and have done: and take your concerns seriously, but remain amazed every day I set foot on this weird and wonderful terrain.

yours, Peter T.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: bbc
Date: 20 May 00 - 01:37 PM

Jenny,

I didn't plan to add to this thread--basically I've given up on Mudcat as I knew it--but I do want to place myself among those who feel as you do. Like you, I have exchanged private communications w/ various of the longer-term members who feel, as we do, that there is a loss of quality in the communication on Mudcat in recent months. Some have given up & left completely. Some continue to lurk & post once in awhile. Since I am not a performer or an instrumentalist, I have little to add in terms of starting meaningful threads of a musical nature, so I am mostly silent, these days. I have tried very hard to refrain from expressing my frustration in a negative way & I will certainly leave before I do so. Still, I feel sad for what seems like a loss to me.

love to you & best wishes to all,

bbc


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: paddymac
Date: 20 May 00 - 01:29 PM

Love ya, Babe!


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: bbelle
Date: 20 May 00 - 11:11 AM

My only regret in the wording of my post is saying that I would eventually leave, which makes it seem that I am seeking out admonitions to "not leave." If ever I choose to do so, I can assure you, it will be done quietly. I've dropped in and out a couple of times and only a very, very small handful of people knew.

I believe I've begun my "way" back to being "Jenny." In the past couple of days, I've had a burning desire to sing and play ... something I haven't had in years. Perhaps it is the "tortured" soul inside me ... perhaps it's just the "edge" one gets from angst? Whatever it is ...

I've heard from mudcatters, privately, who basically lurk but will add to the foundation of the Mudcat Cafe. I hope others, old and new, will step back and step forward, and rally to a cohesiveness. The "old" Mudcat Cafe was a wonderful place ... bringing in new ideas, philosophies, history ... only serves to enhance the "old."

Am I carrying a banner for the Mudcat Cafe? Perhaps. I marched and demonstrated for Civil Rights ... and it worked. I marched and demonstrated for Equal Rights ... and it worked. I marched and demonstrated for the Right of Choice ... and it worked. Now, I will march and demonstrate to keep the integrity of the Mudcat Cafe ... and I hope I don't get tired!

Self-indulgence? hmmmm. Yeah!

Jenny


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Fortunato
Date: 19 May 00 - 03:07 PM

Yes, Jenny. I hang on hoping that the evolving cafe will surprise me in ways I don't expect, as it has done in the past. I'm not ready to part with my psuedonym, but I have dropped my mask in private messages. All the best to you.

Fortunato


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 19 May 00 - 01:28 PM

I don't think we need be frightened about arguments that are carried out in an open way. And it's not just politics. We can argue about anything. Most of the time it stays pretty civilized, and even when it gets heated, no reral harm gets done.

What messes things up isn't that, it's when people start doing things like posting anonymously, or in the name of other people (even with the GUEST prefix, it can still happen)- especially when this is done as a way of bullying people into doing things the way the bullies wish. As PeterT says, this seems to have died down recently, though no doubt it'll come again.

Mudcat is as good as we can make it. Sometimes that is very good indeed.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: GUEST,Will Horton
Date: 19 May 00 - 01:26 PM

Funny that among the people lamenting here are one or two who are long on insults and short on apologies. To me, that seems to be the thing that causes trouble, not the differences of opinion.

If anything, Mudcatters seem to appreciate people who have differing ideas than their own--it's the name-calling and abuse, which is often anonymous, as well as the poisonous private mails, some of which have apparently been frightening as well as just offensive.

I come here because I learn a lot of new songs. People seem genuinely happy to share lyrics and chord progressions, and I know that often they don't have them on hand, and yet they sit down put a half an hour or more into setting something down for a complete stranger.

That is so sweet that I makes me almost want to cry. I think that when people put that kind of effort in, and then get flamed, it doesn't matter if no one responds to the flame, the damage is done.

That damage is usually simple, no more chords or lyrics.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: L R Mole
Date: 19 May 00 - 01:00 PM

Well, it's raining here in R.I., but the gardens need it.Thank you for your gentle gift of drawing us together.As Mr. Ochs said,"...ah, but in such an ugly time the only true protest is beauty." Don't leave.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Peter T.
Date: 19 May 00 - 12:42 PM

I have generally felt that in the last couple of months that the jerks have gone away for the moment (they will likely be back) and the tone was getting back to normal. There have been a lot of really great things going on here recently, and the usual comedy. I am sorry you still feel badly about what is going on here moonchild (Jenny), and God knows you have a right to, after the slimy things that were going on. It is a day at a time.

Kelida: I don't know what fire you caught from your posts, but I always liked them, and we can learn a ton from you, just keep with us -- older people need a great deal of patience, they are so unruly and pigheaded and refuse to listen, and are incredibly childish. It is just something teenagers have to put up with.

yours, Peter


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Peg
Date: 19 May 00 - 11:15 AM

thanks, Jenny/moonchild for a thoughtful and thought-provoking post. I came here for the music but have gotten sucked into all kinds of other discussions, arguments, flights of fantasy, advice-sharing sessions and joke swaps. I agree with Craig, the political threads are full of people who feel strongly about one side or the other (usually) and never the twain shall meet, in most cases. I feel passionately about my convictions but debating them in cyberspace (as I have found here and elsewhere) can be an excruciating exercise, much like beating one's head agaist a brick wall, or tossing one's heart into a blender, or throwing one's moral underpinnings into the eye of a hurricane.

I dearly love and appreciate many of the people who post here; some I find to be a pain in the ass; for most members of MudCat, my feelings are probably somewhere in between. (I am sure anyone who has opinions one way or the other about me would have similar feelings about everyone else, feelings which range along a continuum).

I haven't been here all that long (a few months I guess) and with each passing day some newbie or old-timer may provide me cause to like or dislike them based on something they express or the manner in which they express it. Eloquence is in no short supply here (neither are invective or clumsiness or back-pedalling). At the end of the day, we all seem to get along pretty well and this is partly because people want to be accepted and liked by this strange and delightful and maddening community...and many of us seem comfortable with being who we are here...

here's to many more years of the same!

Peg


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Mooh
Date: 19 May 00 - 07:08 AM

Keli, I'm 42 (at least that's what I'm told, I don't remember being born) and I'm here to learn from everyone. Only trouble is, it's harder for me to learn, the older I get. Should have done more of it when I was younger I guess. Share the wealth, there's so much to be had. Mooh.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Racer
Date: 19 May 00 - 02:18 AM

I agree with what DougR has said. If no one posts anything to the threads that seem to promote argument, they will die. I never read the political threads anymore. I know that it`s just a bunch of people arguing about something that will never be resolved. No one will change their minds; no one will `come around`.

I`m saddened to hear that good people are leaving as a result of a few bad apples. I guess this is life in the information age.

By the way, Kelida, I'm 26 years old and here to learn as much as I can from the older and more experienced people on this website. I think it's great that you're starting as early as you are.

-Craig


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: DougR
Date: 19 May 00 - 01:21 AM

Well said, Jenny, and I agree with your assesment of the change in climate on the Mudcat over the past year I have been a member. Going away is one way to handle it, and I considered it myself, but decided that I get a great deal of enjoyment from the Mudcat and wasn't about to let some inflamatory postings chase me off. Someone has already suggested the best way to handle the flamers and other undesirables, and it has been suggested in many other threads too ...ignore 'em.

DougR


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: katlaughing
Date: 19 May 00 - 01:10 AM

Yeah, but that does say it so well, Rick...ditto here, Jenny, and I've always loved the name Jenny Lind...it's beautiful...luvyakat


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 19 May 00 - 01:03 AM

Nice words jen, yer a "class act".

Rick (briefer than normal!)


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Peter Kasin
Date: 19 May 00 - 12:06 AM

Y2K is my first year on the mudcat, and I have found this to be a very hospitable place, with a generous spirit, as you have. The bad apples that you describe seem to fit the personality who craves attention. Maybe the way to handle them is to starve that craving by not responding. If they don't get responses, where's the payoff for them? It wouldn't be fair if people such as you are driven from this site by the few flamers (I'm not sure what kind of poster is a troll, but it sounds like someone who pops up from below and then goes into hiding? Hit and run poster?) who enjoy stirring the pot with insults and worse. I'm occasionally guilty of a sarcastic comment, but it's meant to be good natured, with the intention of people laughing with it. However, I'm more aware that they should be used with caution. So, Jenny, I don't know you, but I have read many of your posts, and I sincerely hope that you and the good spirit you bring here will stay.

chanteyranger


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Kelida
Date: 18 May 00 - 11:42 PM

I haven't been here very long, and I've been sort of lurking lately--not doing a whole lot of posting at all. Some of that is because as it nears the end of the school year I have exams (and an Advanced Placement test) to study for, but part of it is because of my own run-ins with trolls and flamers. After catching a lot of fire for my posts--which I generally consider to be civil or helpful, and at the very least funny--I decided that it might be best to think very carefully about what I post responses to.

At seventeen, I know I'm one of the youngest people here, and I didn't come here so much to share what I know (which, admittedly, is not nearly as much as what most of the others here seem to know) but to learn from the great wealth of knowledge and information that others have to share. If I know the answer to a question, I try to respond if no one else has already given the same answer, and I try to read most of the music-related threads. If I don't have a lot of questions all the time, it's because I want to learn as much as possible from other people's questions so that when I DO have a question, I'll be able to ask intelligently and be able to understand the answers. I admit that I mostly frequent the BS threads when I post, but as I said above, I DO read the music threads.

I, for one, am not ready for real names.

Peace--Keli


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: GUEST
Date: 18 May 00 - 10:47 PM

World history is nothing more than a chronicle of the rise and fall of one civilization after another. Even as one country reaches a cultural pinnacle and begins to show promising efforts to advance the human race towards a utopian goal, so another country, motivated not by altruism, is plotting to topple its visionaries and derail its progression. It is no different in the ether of virtual communities.

It was bound to happen, sooner or later.... Paradise on earth (or the Internet) is an illusion.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: GUEST,Will Horton
Date: 18 May 00 - 08:46 PM

As a longtime lurker, I have noticed many names that no longer appear, and there are many fewer posts and threads than there used to be, before people started posting under other people's names. I hope it stays calm, and I hope that people come back and that new people start to come and stay because they feel welcome.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 18 May 00 - 06:10 PM

I'm happy that we haven't had (on nights I was there) any trolls and flamers at the HearMe sessions. But if we do, you should know that, while there's no way to expel such a nogoodnik, it is possible to make him/her invisible and inaudible. I ran across that information at HearMe.Com, in a FAQ, as I recall. Each participant has to make the decision and take the action for himself/herself, but once one decides to make Mr.Troll disappear, sounds and text from that person don't show up on your own computer.

Let's hope we never have to use this facility.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 May 00 - 05:42 PM

Here isa poem about Jenny Lind and Hans Christian Andersen>/A>

And here is a picture of Jenny Lind, the Swedish Nightingale

And here is a picture of a railway train called after her

So, please try to ignore the flamers, and the times when the Mudcat goofs off. It's still pretty good.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Sean Belt
Date: 18 May 00 - 03:17 PM

Thanks, Jenny, for your opening your heart in this thread. If nothing else, our mention of your parents naming you for Jenny Lind the singer gave me a warm smile. And that led me to thinking of the "Jenny Lind Polka" which was one of my favorite tunes to play on the guitar a while back. So, thanks for that. Of course, this reverie is nice, but somewhat off topic. My apologies to all.

I can't disagree with you that the flamers and other obnoxious folk somewhat diminish this and other public forums. It's a shame, and no mistake about it. But, sometimes I think that bearing the hateful screeds – and thankfully they are in the minority of posts -- is the price we all pay for keeping company and conversation with the intelligent and witty folk who stop in and hang about here.

I've been visiting the Mudcat for almost two years now; trying to post when I have something worthwhile to say and to just read when I don't. And it seems to have a natural ebb and flow about it. People come and go. The posts get interesting and then inane and back again. All in all, I find much to enjoy and not much to get upset about. The flamers make a show, I shake my head in disgust and then the flamers fade out. All in all, I really quite like the place.

Should you cut back on your visits or go away altogether, you'll be missed, certainly. Sensitive, talented folks always are. And, of course if that's your move, the rude, intolerant, uncivil folks will have made yet more inroads to winning the day.

It's a conundrum, for sure. Best of luck in solving it for yourself.

- Sean


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Mooh
Date: 18 May 00 - 03:15 PM

Jenny, please don't stop contributing, we need people like you. Sometimes it helps to return to what once was, with the gentle guidance of one who was there.

(I only half hide behind a pseudonym, as I explained on another thread, Mooh is pronounced Mike.)Mooh.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: GUEST,me
Date: 18 May 00 - 02:33 PM

this reminds me of a scene from Shogun...

Blackthorne: "A sad thing, not being able to trust anyone." Mariko: "No, Anjin-san, not a sad thing, just a thing."

these spaces have ever and always held trolls and orcs, the difference being that, these days, they've realized that they outnumber the survivors.

Peace upon thee


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Mrrzy
Date: 18 May 00 - 01:35 PM

I, also, prefer not to use my real name on the Net at all, which includes Mudcat. However, Jenny, I would be very saddened to see moonchild vanish from the Cafe - you're one of the people (like katlaughing, and probably most of the people named in one posting by one -if not the- troublesome flamer) whose posts I actively seek out. Now, I might be one of the relative newbies to whom you refer, who often discusses things that don't directly relate to music, but that's because music is only one facet of my life. I like discussing anything and everything in this forum because this is somewhere I'm likely to get into a fun, involved, conversation with fun, intelligent folks who are likely, by virtue of a shared interest in folk music, to have shared interests in general. But, as I've said in prior discussions, I do try to be polite and courteous. So I wouldn't say Oh, please keep posting, you're so much fun to have around! I would say (hey, I think I did!), how sad it would be if you left.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Ringer
Date: 18 May 00 - 01:27 PM

That was a very thoughtful post, Moonchild. Thanks. I echo Hollowfox: I, too, am saddened by your sadness.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: black walnut
Date: 18 May 00 - 01:26 PM

i appreciate the great thoughtfulness and openness of Jenny's letter. when i joined the 'cat, the flamer/s was/were already there. i can only imagine what it must have been like before that....

~black walnut (who is not ready for real names)


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: Hollowfox
Date: 18 May 00 - 01:16 PM

"Trust your companions, but cut the cards anyway." I've always enjoyed and valued your postings in the short time I've participated in Mudcat, and I'm saddened by your sadness. No one here will tell you how much - or little - to post, of course, and if you choose to gradually stop posting, you can do that. I'd hate to see you go because of someone else's choice, however, be they troll or flamer. Like the tide, extraneous postings, etc. will wax and wane. I started a pretty good one a couple of weeks ago, although I didn't think it would go on as long as it did, or in the direction it did. This happens in conversations anywhere. I guess the way to change the proportion of musical threads to all the other ones is to post more musical threads; I think this would be grand. I hope you feel better soon, Mary


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 May 00 - 01:01 PM

Just recently I've been getting the feeling that we are through a bad spell of bullying and flaming and all that, and it's been feeling more comfortable.

That's essentially because the nastiness was mostly coming from a very small number of people who seem to have turned their attention to something else. Sooner or later I imagine we'll gonmthrough another spelkl of that kind of stuff, or something as bad or worse. It goes with the open nature of the Mudcat, and it's a price we have to pay, I think.

It's never occurred to me to have any qualms about using my real name. That's partly because I live on te East side of the Atlantic, and partly because I haven't come in for the kind of personal unpleasantness Jenny talks about.

As to whether the Mudcat has changed for the worse, well, I haven't been there that long. My impression is that so far it has gone in waves, good and not so good mixed up in varying proportions. But more than enough good to keep me coming around, and I hope Jenny will decide that too. I think it's quite possible that the best of the Mudcat may still be, not in "the good old days", but up ahead and still to come.


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Subject: RE: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: mactheturk
Date: 18 May 00 - 12:58 PM

Jenny,

I suspect that you will never change. You remain a kind and gentle soul and, in the end, that is all that matters.

Sincerely,

Mac


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Subject: A Kinder, Gentler Place
From: bbelle
Date: 18 May 00 - 12:43 PM

I decided to go back through all my earlier posts … 3 ½ years worth. It took some time because I had to search under chinadoll, humdinger folksinger, Jenny, and moonchild. Here's what I discovered about me … 3 ½ years ago I was a kinder and gentler soul. And from revisiting some of the threads, discovered that everyone was.

The subject matter wasn't so different … we were discussing gun control and the rights of choice and the 60's and Viet Nam and the Mudcat. There were double entendres and wonderful off-the-wall pearls from Art Thieme, when he thought conversation was getting too intense. 99% of us had never met and probably didn't think we ever would. Most of us were folksingers or musicians who had actually been in the trenches. All of us had a passion for music.

The tone was mostly civil. That doesn't mean there were not differing opinions … there were a whole host of differing opinions. And there were heated arguments. Mostly political, or about human rights, or civil rights. There was always a bit of thread creep, which made the discussions more rounded and all the more interesting. And always, there have been discussions of keeping the Mudcat forum strictly musical. But it was things like thread creep that allowed us to laugh and get to know each other better and on a more personal basis.

Contrary to what some of you may think … it was not Utopia … but it was civil … and it was interesting to hear the experiences and views of others.

After I had been on the Mudcat for a new months, one of my posts to Max said that I felt safe on the Mudcat and asked him to change my nickname to my real name.

Then, whether by word of mouth or searching the internet, the Mudcat Café membership started to grow by leaps and bounds. Some of the new mudcatters assimilated themselves so quickly and smoothly, I still couldn't tell you exactly when they started posting. And the musical history and knowledge these individuals brought with them was boundless. The Mudcat Café has always been a place that welcomed everyone, with the assumption that whatever they shared with the rest of us would be a plus. Unfortunately, it's impossible to keep out the chaff when the locks are opened.

It was at that time we got our first flamer … gargoyle. Yes .. he probably is talented … and started throwing flames almost immediately. I was one of the first he attacked and was forced to change my name back to a nickname. I no longer felt safe. Then he moved from me to katlaughing and the list goes on.

This is when the Mudcat changed. And this is when I changed. I became untrusting and wary and read between the lines of everything that was posted in my direction. Whenever I choose to post, it is always from a defensive stance. I've become a hardened "poster" to the extent that some Mudcat individuals have thought that was my actual persona. Thank g-d for gatherings and the capabilities of getting to know someone through ICQ chats or personal email, to dispel those images. Only because of private communications and my "personal" relationship with another Mudcatter, was I made aware of the recent use of my nickname by a troll. I assume that everyone else took it for face value that I would actually have "said" those vile things. It makes me feel sad … very, very sad. And the very saddest aspect of all this is that some of the anonymous posters are people I know.

Flamers and trolls and just generally nasty, anonymous people came flooding through the cracks of the Mudcat. Now we have voluminous threads with flamers throwing nasty barbs and those with names throwing barbs back. Or silly voluminous threads which have nothing to do with music and are nothing but gratuitous backslapping sessions. Or threads about breasts with 100 posts and threads about music with 20 posts. Or threads named with a double meaning, but about music, just to get people to read them. Or religious proselytizing threads. Or threads asking people to vow not to do this or vow to do that, which I always find very interesting, because the people involved in the folk music industry have mostly been those who walked outside the parameters of a governmental society.

I've been fortunate in having met a handful of mudcatters in person … 99% of whom I hold in great affection. And there are a few more whom I haven't met in person, but whom I also hold in great affection... and with whom I communicate on a regular basis. And they come from all walks in life, with a variety of personalities, religions, political bents, and philosophies. We are not all alike, nor do we think alike. But we have a tremendous amount of respect for each other and trust and honesty.

I realize that without censorship the people on here are uncontrollable. I have never believed in censorship and wouldn't even suggest it. It has been suggested that we "police" ourselves. That's not possible in a virtual society but those of us who have grown "close" do just that … but privately … and with respect. I have seen so many Mudcat "friends" virtually drop out of sight because of the above and I feel sad about that, as well.

This is not about threadiquette, which would involve all Mudcatters. This thread is about me and how I've changed and my sadness. It is not intended to invite gratuitous comments. I post less and less and will eventually no longer post at all.

And I have a given name. And it's Jenny Lind. And I love my name. My parents were prophetic and named me for the Swedish Songbird. And I have a nickname. And it's moonchild. And I identify with that nickname on a very personal basis. And I love being called "moonchild" or "moonbaby." But, I chose that nickname because I was afraid to use my real name for fear of my personal safety. Henceforth, I will use my given name on the Mudcat.

Shalom … Jenny


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