Wow, two eventful weeks have passed. First there was the 300th edition of The Post to celebrate. And what a wonderful edition it was. Well done team and contributors! A day later, there was yet another hootoo birth: Toby, the son of Kelli and her husband J was born on Friday, 9th March. She posted shortly before she went to the birth house — and then we waited and waited and waited for news. Just as well that nobody anticipated the dramatic birth Kelli and her family went through. Let's hope that she'll soon recover. Congratulations Kelli, J and Toby!
The next day, somebody submitted a controversial entry to Peer Review and a few Researchers, each with own ideas and opinions, clashed — KABOOM. It wasn't as funny as it may sound now: on the contrary, it's exactly the sort of debate we're not so keen on in PR, especially if some newbie comes across it. So I went and talked to all involved (some may call it 'slapping wrists'). And look: I still live to tell the tale.
Now that's one of the fascinating and very positive aspects of our community: people are ready for a debate, they're generally open-minded and if you don't hit a raw nerve with them, more often than not, this debate is friendly. It all boils down to the way you address somebody. We have a saying in Germany that when you shout into the forest it will resound, or in other words, what goes around comes around. Think of it before you talk to somebody; it really pays. The feedback I got for my messages was exactly as expected: nice and friendly. So now you may think: sure, what else? That's the point: two of the people who I left a message hadn't talked to me before and didn't know me. I mean, it's not as if I was an influential or important person, or well-known all over hootoo or something, so they could have rightly told me to mind my own business and to bugger off. But they didn't, so who knows? Maybe I'll even make a new friend or two on the long run.
Yes, and then there were some complaints about the content of an entry that featured on the Front Page. Well, that can happen, but why does it? Because you don't take your chances and comment in Peer Review while the entry is still there, that's why. Have you ever read an entry on the Front Page and thought, 'Oi, that's not true what is written there,' or 'Why didn't they mention XYZ?' You have? Then do yourself a favour and go and comment in Peer Review. Apply to be a Scout, even, if you've been infected. But don't think that your opinion isn't asked. It's needed and appreciated. For starters, just go and read one entry in PR a day/week/month, depending on the time you can spend. There's no need to comment right away if you're too shy. Just read the entry and the ensuing debate to get a feeling of how things work. If you stumble upon a controversial debate, don't let it put you off. Sometimes those debates can turn to be very funny, even. Whatever you do, do something!
And if you now think I sound like an advertisement, you're not wrong. This really is something that's close to my heart and that I'd love to share with as many people as possible.