[SIGCIS-Members] In today's Boston Globe, re developer of EMAIL

Jonathan Coopersmith j-coopersmith at tamu.edu
Tue Feb 14 13:11:14 PST 2017


Do I sense a possible panel for SHOT on this particular episode and the
larger issues that Tom so eloquently raises?

 Jonathan

Jonathan Coopersmith
Professor
Department of History
Texas A&M University
College Station, TX  77843-4236
979.845.7151
979.862.4314 (fax)

http://historynewsnetwork.org/blog/author/42
:
latest post is
 "Academic opposition to Trump's Muslim ban,"
http://historynewsnetwork.org/blog/153892


*FAXED.  The Rise and Fall of the Fax Machine* (Johns Hopkins University
Press) is the co-recipient of the 2016 Business History Conference Hagley
Prize for best book in business history.


On Tue, Feb 14, 2017 at 3:04 PM, Heyck, Hunter <hheyck at ou.edu> wrote:

> An excellent, succinct message, Tom.
> —Hunter
>
> Hunter Heyck
> Professor and Chair, Department of the History of Science
> University of Oklahoma
> 601 Elm St., PHSC 601
> Norman, OK 73019-0315
> hheyck at ou.edu
> 405-556-1145 (M)
> Author of: Age of System: understanding the development of modern social
> science
> <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__jhupbooks.press.jhu.edu_content_age-2Dsystem&d=CwMGaQ&c=ODFT-G5SujMiGrKuoJJjVg&r=xd_h1GnqUOIgUwdyipeynKCpqL76q7QWVzlt1TjNm50&m=utVVfIvdGnqQuZN1TkCIS0hnTG5UwcT2LYkm0iHhLPA&s=KG1lv2yw6GKXdGudPhKw6phoVcDqZVSie74xe7ozEQU&e=>
>
> And, Herbert A. Simon: the bounds of reason in modern America
> <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__jhupbooks.press.jhu.edu_content_herbert-2Dsimon&d=CwMGaQ&c=ODFT-G5SujMiGrKuoJJjVg&r=xd_h1GnqUOIgUwdyipeynKCpqL76q7QWVzlt1TjNm50&m=utVVfIvdGnqQuZN1TkCIS0hnTG5UwcT2LYkm0iHhLPA&s=Pri_jDtK6eDq_4cG5b98AIRGslRK1YsLL1n53hcMDMo&e=>
>
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> On Feb 14, 2017, at 2:54 PM, Thomas Haigh <thomas.haigh at gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Perhaps the most disturbing thing in the Boston Globe column (which I
> notice Ayyadurai is already featuring prominently on his own website) is
> the line “One early innovator declined to be interviewed, fearing
> litigation from Ayyadurai.” So we now live in a world where Internet
> pioneers are afraid to tell journalists that electronic mail was widely
> used in the mid-1970s. That is what is known as a “chilling effect” on free
> speech.
>
> I have focused my own statements (www.sigcis.org/ayyadurai
> <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.sigcis.org_ayyadurai&d=DwMFaQ&c=qKdtBuuu6dQK9MsRUVJ2DPXW6oayO8fu4TfEHS8sGNk&r=BM0VlL6M9YOYuQiIBopsWA&m=4cwWCDpBnWaKHuMF0UgEaaz3mxYabQa7bDXFiqMGlYY&s=vv1gYQ7TjFxltGg3bBOCpf2mHu7A8KGwDjw2i9F9R18&e=>)
> on Ayyadurai’s claims and arguments rather than his ethics and motivations.
> My expertise is as a historian and technologist, not an ethicist or
> psychologist. My position is simple:
>
> 1)      Nobody can invent a technology that already exists, still less
> one that is in widespread use.
> 2)      “Email” is a contraction of “electronic mail” and refers to the
> same thing. For example, Abbate’s *Inventing the Internet* (p. 106) notes
> “The network’s users unexpectedly came up with a new focus for network
> activity: electronic mail. Email (initially called ‘net notes’ or simply
> ‘mail’….”
> 3)      Electronic mail systems were in widespread use many years before
> Ayyadurai developed his “EMAIL” system at some point between 1978 and 1982.
> For example, Abbate states (p.107) of the early-1970s ARPANET that “Email
> quickly became the network’s most popular and influential service,
> surpassing all expectations.”
> 4)      Therefore, Ayyadurai is not “the inventor of email.”
>
> The implication of Ayyadurai’s recent lawsuits is that anyone who
> acknowledges that 1, 2 and 3 are true, and that 4 is their inescapable
> corollary, risks a hugely expensive legal ordeal. Here is what his press
> release of Jan 4 said. “There is no reasonable dispute that Dr. Ayyadurai
> is the inventor of email. The full press kit contains more than 20
> testimonials from leading technology experts and numerous Ph.D.s. The press
> kit also includes two extensive research papers prepared by well-respected
> academic university professors and scientists explaining why Dr. Ayyadurai
> is the inventor of email, and how the few doubters are wrong.” The next
> sentence announces the lawsuit against Techdirt. (
> http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/gawker-media-
> pays-dr-shiva-ayyadurai-inventor-of-email-750000-settlement-300385899.html
> <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.prnewswire.com_news-2Dreleases_gawker-2Dmedia-2Dpays-2Ddr-2Dshiva-2Dayyadurai-2Dinventor-2Dof-2Demail-2D750000-2Dsettlement-2D300385899.html&d=DwMFaQ&c=qKdtBuuu6dQK9MsRUVJ2DPXW6oayO8fu4TfEHS8sGNk&r=BM0VlL6M9YOYuQiIBopsWA&m=4cwWCDpBnWaKHuMF0UgEaaz3mxYabQa7bDXFiqMGlYY&s=Hp0fhd1r6YHg4CUnL402IRJJ7IcSabArSWcea7X15Mg&e=>
> )
>
> I hope that members of this community will not allow themselves to be
> intimidated, though as David warns it may be prudent not to say anything
> one would not feel comfortable defending in court. If Ayyadurai’s legal
> campaign succeeds then what would happen to books like Abbate? Will anyone
> who uses Abbate’s work in the classroom run the risk of a multimillion
> dollar lawsuit? Ayyadurai has also shown himself willing to exploit open
> records laws to obtain my university emails, perhaps in a hunt for
> discrediting or actionable materials. http://www.
> tomandmaria.com/Tom/emailgrab
> <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__www.tomandmaria.com_Tom_emailgrab&d=DwMFaQ&c=qKdtBuuu6dQK9MsRUVJ2DPXW6oayO8fu4TfEHS8sGNk&r=BM0VlL6M9YOYuQiIBopsWA&m=4cwWCDpBnWaKHuMF0UgEaaz3mxYabQa7bDXFiqMGlYY&s=Wi4sM8AmGU0qA7IXZpmSNaKLT3Ax8YeXXxwqUHE0ANY&e=>.
> Other such requests have been harshly criticized by scholars as an assault
> on academic freedom.
>
> A few weeks ago Christopher Leslie asked whether this case is really so
> important to us, versus say defending net neutrality from the Trump
> administration. I would argue that it is, because the challenge that the
> post-fact world poses to academic freedom (and to so much else) is
> something that we are all called to fight in our own little corners of the
> world. Netflix and other tech firms will fight for net neutrality, but who
> will fight for history? If the SIGCIS community doesn’t stand up for the
> integrity of the historical record, against such a concerted campaign to
> undermine it, then who will?
>
> Best wishes,
>
> Tom
>
>
> *From:* Members [mailto:members-bounces at lists.sigcis.org
> <members-bounces at lists.sigcis.org>] *On Behalf Of *Sarah T. Roberts
> *Sent:* Tuesday, February 14, 2017 12:15 PM
> *To:* David C. Brock <dcb at dcbrock.net>
> *Cc:* members at lists.sigcis.org
> *Subject:* Re: [SIGCIS-Members] In today's Boston Globe, re developer of
> EMAIL
>
> I mean I certainly don't intend to be silenced about either the record or
> my take on this situation, or engaging with others about it. That's rather
> the aim of suing, right?
>
> --Sarah
> ---
>
> S a r a h  T.  R o b e r t s,  P h. D.
>
> Assistant Professor
> University of California, Los Angeles
> Department of Information Studies
> Graduate School of Education & Information Studies
> https://is.gseis.ucla.edu/
> <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__is.gseis.ucla.edu_&d=DwMFaQ&c=qKdtBuuu6dQK9MsRUVJ2DPXW6oayO8fu4TfEHS8sGNk&r=BM0VlL6M9YOYuQiIBopsWA&m=4cwWCDpBnWaKHuMF0UgEaaz3mxYabQa7bDXFiqMGlYY&s=qpIiy4UB71Lmn13ZvEskRb58_UhPDkcjt8294_ukeVo&e=>
>
> Blogging periodically at
> http://illusionofvolition.com
> <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__illusionofvolition.com_&d=DwMFaQ&c=qKdtBuuu6dQK9MsRUVJ2DPXW6oayO8fu4TfEHS8sGNk&r=BM0VlL6M9YOYuQiIBopsWA&m=4cwWCDpBnWaKHuMF0UgEaaz3mxYabQa7bDXFiqMGlYY&s=4CamuoOoksX8qNMO0s7W6eu12wHHtd3zD0UU2Ea2pJA&e=>
>
>
> On Feb 14, 2017, at 9:14 AM, David C. Brock <dcb at dcbrock.net> wrote:
>
> Dear All:
>
> I think it might be wise for you to consider that the SIGCIS Members email
> discussion archives are published publicly.
>
> Dr. Ayyadurai and his lawyers are included in this public.
>
> David
>
>
> On Feb 14, 2017, at 12:10 PM, Sarah T. Roberts <sarah.roberts at ucla.edu>
> wrote:
>
> It may be an ideal time to publicize this goofiness, given the area of
> alternative facts and the public' fatigue with them, and the bullies who
> rely upon them.
>
> ---
>
> S a r a h  T.  R o b e r t s,  P h. D.
>
> Assistant Professor
> University of California, Los Angeles
> Department of Information Studies
> Graduate School of Education & Information Studies
> https://is.gseis.ucla.edu/
> <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__is.gseis.ucla.edu_&d=DwMFaQ&c=qKdtBuuu6dQK9MsRUVJ2DPXW6oayO8fu4TfEHS8sGNk&r=BM0VlL6M9YOYuQiIBopsWA&m=4cwWCDpBnWaKHuMF0UgEaaz3mxYabQa7bDXFiqMGlYY&s=qpIiy4UB71Lmn13ZvEskRb58_UhPDkcjt8294_ukeVo&e=>
>
> Blogging periodically at
> http://illusionofvolition.com
> <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=http-3A__illusionofvolition.com_&d=DwMFaQ&c=qKdtBuuu6dQK9MsRUVJ2DPXW6oayO8fu4TfEHS8sGNk&r=BM0VlL6M9YOYuQiIBopsWA&m=4cwWCDpBnWaKHuMF0UgEaaz3mxYabQa7bDXFiqMGlYY&s=4CamuoOoksX8qNMO0s7W6eu12wHHtd3zD0UU2Ea2pJA&e=>
>
>
> On Feb 14, 2017, at 8:48 AM, Dave Walden <dave.walden.family at gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
> The reporter is quite a good technology reporter, in my view; and I see
> the Globe as a pretty high quality newspaper.  I suspect that the article
> was carefully reviewed by the Globe's legal people to cast doubt on
> Ayyadurai's claims without making it possible for him to sue them for
> saying his claims are wrong.
>
> On 2/14/2017 11:42 AM, Pierre MOUNIER-KUHN wrote:
>
> Well, the article – and even more the readers' comments – are far from
> providing our self-proclaimed hero with the best publicity...
> The most objectionable in this paper is the term "*skeptics*" ("The
> skeptics say that by the 1970s, e-mail as we know it today was routinely
> used"). We are not "*skeptic*", we know that S.A.'s claims are *wrong*.
> Yours truly,
> Pierre MK
>
>
>
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