Top posting

D'Arcy J.M. Cain darcy at
Mon Feb 23 13:54:47 EST 2009

On Mon, 23 Feb 2009 19:37:17 +0100
Stef Mientki <stef.mientki at> wrote:
> > FYI, top posts are much harder to read and to reply to than if you edit
> > the message to which you are replying and add your new content interleaved
> >   
> ??? I read that before, but I can't understand it.

It is very simple.  The critical part above is "...edit the
message..."  If you leave a 200 line message in your reply to discuss
three lines then it won't matter whether you top post or bottom post.
You still make it difficult for others to read your posting.

> I use Thunderbird, which opens every message at the top,
> so top posting is the best readable for me,

Only if the previous poster didn't trim their text.  Notice how I have
removed everything here that I am not replying to.  I doubt very much
if you have to scroll down to start reading my response.  You can also
tell at a glance that this is not a "me too" response.

> I don't have to scroll (assuming that I know from previous readings the 
> content of the previous message).

But how do you know what part of the message is being replied to?

> Replying can be preset in any reader I know just as you like, bottom or top.
> So I guess there must be another reason, why some (or maybe even 
> everyone except me)  don't prefer top posting.

Ah, that makes sense.
Because it is not the usual way we read the flow of a conversation.
What is so bad about top posting?

How long did you waste on the above exchange before reversing the lines
in your head?

The bottom line is that thousands of people are reading your reply but
only one (you) is writing it.  It just makes sense for you to take an
extra ten seconds to save thousands of people two seconds reading it.
It is polite and considerate to others.  If everyone did the same you
would also save because you read many more posts than you write.

D'Arcy J.M. Cain <darcy at>         |  Democracy is three wolves                |  and a sheep voting on
+1 416 425 1212     (DoD#0082)    (eNTP)   |  what's for dinner.

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