[Air-l] Listserv Research

Kevin Guidry krguidry at gmail.com
Thu Sep 14 09:42:48 PDT 2006


   I'm fairly new to the list and I'm trying to place the recent
metadiscussion about the listserv itself and participation in context
with what I know about typical and historical behavior on and
characteristics of listservs and listserv participants.
   I am not interested in (publicly) discussing this listserv and its
recent and ongoing events.  What I am interesting in is expanding my
own knowledge of relevant research which may inform the discussion and
aid me in placing this into context.  I am aware of some resources
specifically related to this topic, particularly Brian Butler's 1999
dissertation "The Dynamics of Cyberspace: Examining and Modelling
Online Social Structure" and the works referenced therein.  However, I
am having some difficulty locating additional and more recent relevant
research as much of what I am finding is research performed *using*
listservs but not *about* listservs.  I suspect that I may not be
using the correct terminology or jargon to perform a sufficiently
narrow search.  I also suspect that my topic may simply be too broad
or undefined.  Can some kind soul please point me in the right
direction or towards specific resources that may be useful?
   I also have to wonder if my difficulty in finding more recent
resources may be attributed to a dying off of listservs as they are
replaced by wikis, blogs, bulletin boards, and other resources.  But
that does not match my experience at all.  It may indeed happen over
time but it seems that although younger persons are often dismissive
of e-mail it many older persons, particularly in the professional
worlds in which I have worked, still hold onto e-mail and thus
perpetuate listservs as a viable, useful medium.


Kevin Guidry
Information Technology Fellow
Sewanee: The University of the South



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