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Top Posting

Just doing my civic duty, here is a posting by Stuart Jansen to the Salt Lake Linux Users Group mailing list:

A: Because it messes up the order in which people normally read text.
Q: Why is top-posting such a bad thing?
A: Top-posting.
Q: What is the most annoying thing in e-mail?
A: No.
Q: Should I include quotations after my reply?

See also: http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc1855.html
http://www.catb.org/jargon/html/T/top-post.html

Enough said.

{ 7 } Comments

  1. James using Firefox 3.5.3 on Ubuntu 64 bits | October 19, 2009 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

    Top posting in a normal email is different from doing it in a usenet post in that:

    1. In my experience, most emails are between a small number of people.
    2. All parties involved have generally been following and reading the whole thing.
    2. It's expected rather than abhorred.

  2. Sam using Firefox 3.0.14 on Ubuntu | October 19, 2009 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

    Totally agreed with James.

  3. Aaron using Debian IceWeasel 3.5.3 on Debian GNU/Linux 64 bits | October 19, 2009 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

    @James and @Sam- It's not different at all. It doesn't matter who you are addressing, conversations read from oldest to newest, left to right, top to bottom. Look at blog comments, for example, or forum posts. Can you imagine what it would be like if the oldest post was at the bottom, and the most recent post up top?

    Top-posting is extremely arrogant of the sender. It assumes that everyone wants to read that post before all others. Further, top-posting encourages massive, MASSIVE replies, as no one bothers trimming out the fat, and giving only the relevant information critical for his reply.

    There's nothing good out of top-posting.

  4. St├ęphan K. using Safari 528.16 on Mac OS | October 19, 2009 at 11:39 pm | Permalink

    In my experience, people who top-post do not selectively quote ("trim fat") either. I suppose you won't see the beauty of it until you get both right. :)

    Also, inline forwarding is the devil.

  5. Flimm using Firefox 3.5.3 on Ubuntu | October 20, 2009 at 3:51 am | Permalink

    Just doing my civic duty, here is a posting by Stuart Jansen to the Salt Lake Linux Users Group mailing list:

    A: Because it messes up the order in which people normally read text.
    Q: Why is top-posting such a bad thing?
    A: Top-posting.
    Q: What is the most annoying thing in e-mail?
    A: No.
    Q: Should I include quotations after my reply?

    See also: http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc1855.html
    http://www.catb.org/jargon/html/T/top-post.html

    Enough said.

    It's terribly annoying.

  6. Mat using Konqueror 3.5 on Kubuntu | October 20, 2009 at 4:58 am | Permalink

    Loved the quote.

  7. Buttmeister using Firefox 3.5.5 on Windows 7 | November 15, 2009 at 12:46 am | Permalink

    I am the buttmeister

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