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The Pen is Mightier than the Sword
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Peredhil

Manners and Consideration

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Peredhil creaks in, Ancient that he is, and begins pondering change.

 

I've been with the Pen is Mightier than the Sword since before our first web site. Sometimes it's useful to reflect on what the goals were, however unstated, and what they are.

 

My views on the Pen:

1) The Pen is a place to grow as writers, and therefore as people. The emphasis and focus is on the person, in my opinion. Many creative types, in my experience, are very sensitive and intelligent as well as creative. Thus, the Pen draws many who've been wounded by life, coming together to heal.

It is therefore my belief that the more nurturing and 'family'-feeling we are, the more people will feel free to express themselves and become better writers.

There are many boards where people post, rack up post counts, or argue. Here at the Pen, the focus is on writing.

 

2) Respect. Here at the Pen, we respect others, whether we like them, understand them, or agree with them. We cherish differences because perception of depths only comes from more than one point of view. We state our opinions - and allow others to not agree. We think before we write. When speaking on a sensitive issue, we not only review it for what we think it says, we attempt to see it for how others may receive it - and adjust accordingly. We debate issues, not people. When giving feedback and criticism, we correct the work, not the person. We try to always be aware when correcting a work, that this is the results of someone's time, and often the best expression of incoherent feelings (and attempted communication of those feelings) they could do. Therefore, we remain aware that no matter how 'silly' or 'simple' it may seem to us, it's important to them.

Many creatives feel misunderstood, or unable to recognize their worth because they are aware of how much they aren't. When reading, we respect the effort enough to acknowledge it, knowing the fear that no one understands or cares.

 

3) It's all about the quality of writing, not the quantity. In the past, chats were conducted in galaxynet #thePen on IRC. There have been conversational threads, and even single emoticon-posted replies to acknowledge a point - but the overall rule-of-thumb has been: Let's post for everyone, the students, the workers, those with much time and those with little. Which leads to in my senile way to:

 

4) Bandwidth. This site is a gift of love donation. Love of you'll, and love of writing. In return, we acknowledge that server space is not infinite. That sometimes servers will be down, or if we're really really popular, all the connections will be full. We keep our Avatars and Signature graphics small and occasional, so that those with limited time and bandwidth can have a change to read, not to just wait on pictures to load. We respect the limitations bandwidth imposes on others, even if we have a T5 connection ourself.

 

5) Roleplaying. The stresses and issues of life bring some here to escape. Others just like the freedom and fun of roleplaying. Still others like to try on characteristics in an online setting and interaction before trying them in their real life. In any and all cases, the Pen for the most part has respected people's characters/personae. If someone wants to be a gecko - let them be a gecko, roleplay them as a gecko. If you use their character in a story, try to use it as they would. If you have a doubt - send them the intended post in a PM and get their insight and feedback - we ARE here to help each other grow.

On another tangent, be sensitive to how others perceive themselves. I would never try to tame or collar someone like Canid - her character is an embodiment of the freedom and intelligence of the wild wolf - self controlled, but never controlled by another. Someone like Wyvern has implicitly given permission to tease him about his greed. But tactfully, respectfully - and dare I say it? - lovingly.

 

6) All in all, I suppose it comes down to the Platinum Rule. 'Do unto others as they would have you do unto them, if that action is an personally acceptable thing for you to do.' Covers their feelings, your feelings, and the communication. Loose translation: Don't be selfish, don't feel forced by anyone into being a doormat, treat each other nicely.

 

Feel free to comment if you wish.

 

This is YOUR site. Your activity and words determine it's future.

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Guest Hanna

On a side note, if you do have a very slow connection it is possible to turn off all graphics in posts via the My Controls link in the upper right hand corner. Click on Board Settings and change these options:

 

Do you wish to view members signatures when reading threads? Yes No

Do you wish to view images in posts, such as smilies and posted images? Yes No

Do you wish to view members avatars when reading threads?

 

Most people have signatures and avatars to help create their persona and you might be missing out on quite a bit if you choose to disable it..but having once been doomed to a 28.8 connection myself, the faster load times can make surfing a board much more appealing.

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...ya know... i never take for granted someone acting as the collective concieous a.k.a voice of reason/peace maker... lord, knows i've played that role too many times... thanx for shouldering the load peredhill...

 

 

revery

the dreamlost

"to explain we must refrain"

the dream continues...

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Bows in front of the Polite Magi

 

Well said. This should be common sense. Thanks to Photoshop, its possible to optimize the size of your picture so that a poor soul wont have to suffer much.

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Yep, excellent advice, especially for all the new people here...the level of politeness has kind of dropped, but that's to be expected with more people.

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It's true, Falcon, that with numbers Neighbors just become someone who live near.

 

But the Pen culture, in my web experience, is unique and worth something.

 

How can the new be welcomed, grow, and write if we don't teach them? Correct errors (isn't that what feedback is all about?) while cherishing the person.

 

New and young means energy and fresh viewpoints. Old and experienced means direction and continuity. Both are important, and must be balanced.

 

Sighs.

 

but then, I think that only those who don't need this thread are reading it.

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aw... chin up young ancient...

 

 

:)

 

 

revery

the dreamlost

"get the kewl, get the kewl shoeshine" (gorrilaz)

the dream continues...

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Well I'm reading it... not that I matter though. Hehehe.

 

Seriously though, ya we all should be polite here and for the most part I don't think we really have a problem with it.

Edited by Archaneus

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I do hope my occasional signature isn't a bother, it's only 32kb. I might even make a half-height one to cut down on screen waste.

 

I like what he said because he didn't just say, "This is the policy" He explained exactly why things are the way they are, Dammit Pered, now I feel all warm and fuzzy inside. :D

 

Don't you worry, if we learned to act sensibly, why can the young'uns learn? We all were new to the Pen at some time or another.

 

I'd encourage any of the new people to contact me on MSN or any other of those networks, gladly talk to you about matters of the Pen or anything else. Maybe all you people need is some help in this vast sea of...

 

Well I guess poetry, we produce at least 15 new ones a day. :P

 

Take care everyone

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Mr. Peredhil sir, meow. Thank you for noting the mannerisms that are appropriate for the site. Though they were, in my mind, unspoken laws of which I attempt to uphold, perhaps some of the people may understand better now that there is a certain etiquette to writing... even if it is less strict than some publishers and the like wold allow. I have seen some amazing talent here at the Pen, and i have appreciated how kind everyone, literally, has been to me and the other members. while it seems that the mannerisms of our quaint little tavern were unspoken and abided by, at least on this site anyway, I thank you for making them known... particularly because, in the future, there may be the instances where some of the people have retired from chat rooms, and know nothing of what can be construed as appropriate. I enjoy this site in every aspect, save for the annoying tan and green colors I had before I changed them to black and grey, and I hope that we may expand and introduce an endless repertoire of people to our humble abode of writing.

 

Meow... In particular mention, I have to thank the site... creator(s), especially for the Conservatory. Without which, I may have doubted my potential, as my imagination expands whilst I am roleplaying. I also must give thanks to my dear ashke, Elwen, and my other two muses, smallscale_mind_games, and autumn_sun... they've really been nice in helping me to revive the aforementioned room. I couldn't have done any of it without them... Meow... I don't know if that was supposed to be here, especially considering I do not know if any of this makes sense, but I had to thank them anyway.

 

Also, thank you crowgirl...numbersomething (Katy) for introducing me to the site... I'm sorry to have seen you go.

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Just bumping this back up to the "unread messages" for the newer people (and those of us who want a reread), because this is important.

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