[free-sklyarov] Sklyarov=Napster according to Senator Boxer

Ethan Straffin drumz at best.com
Wed Aug 1 14:52:42 PDT 2001

> Ethan Straffin writes:
> > #!/usr/local/bin/perl
> > # SPACE: Sheeple-Pacifying Autoresponder for Congressional Email
> > # (C) 2001 Albert Gore, Jr., Inventor of the Internet
> Whether or not this script or something like it is respondign to email,
> it highlights an important point.  The harder it is for someone to
> ignore what you're saying, the more effect it's going to have.  A
> postal-mail form letter carries more weight than email, a unique letter
> more than a form letter, a legible handwritten letter more than a typed
> one, and a personal appearance would be the trump card.
> I'm not sure where a phone call would fit into all of this.

Based on the discussions I've seen on other activism lists, my impression
is that phone calls can be very effective.  I would put them just below
personal visits and just above faxes.  It's a lot harder to ignore someone
when you're trying to get them off the phone politely than if you can
simply spend five seconds skimming a letter or fax and choosing the
(in)appropriate form response.

Emails really are next to useless.  For one thing, Congresscritters get
tons of them, primarily from Internet activism sites that send out form
emails by the truckload.  For another thing, it's virtually impossible to
verify constituency.  I am quite certain that many politicians *do* rely
on automated filtering to various degrees.  If you can get through those
filters and receive anything resembling a thoughtful response, more power
to you; you're the rare exception.

BTW, have I mentioned telegrams?  I've met activists who swear by them.

"There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is
proof against all arguments and which cannot fail to keep a man in
everlasting ignorance -- that principle is contempt prior to
investigation."                                     -- Herbert Spencer

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