hi Frances,

I took some time before responding to this comment (something I rarely do; I’m often more spontaneous).

You said, “I don’t think Dave took sides”, but I know for sure that someone either blogged about this or wrote to me about it privately (but pretty sure it was public). I think the whole debate took place on GMT timezones and by the time Dave woke up it had morphed into something bigger…
You said, “I saw theory being treated as a topic that might be of interest to some rather than a pre-requisite for participation”. Forgive me, but this is something that I think was very subtle (even with the misunderstanding which I figured out weeks later, and after someone had changed their original blogpost to remove some of the offensive material; making it v difficult to trace back), and I know from responses on my blog, on facebook, and privately (as well as a blogpost Jaap posted before mine, and the whole Maddie and Ary viewpoint, which was slightly different from mine) – that other people also felt that there was an underlying attitude about the theory discussion that was exclusionary. All my blogpost did was to offer my views on why people who did not want to discuss D&G should still be allowed to participate fully in rhizo14. It’s not a lot of fun to be called on one’s privilege. It’s downright offensive, I guess. But you need to put yourself in the shoes of the people who got offended (and like I said, I was by no means the only one; I think I just might have been loud; I know that I myself am privileged in many ways and exert a lot of power in this community, but I’m just one person and I’d have no power if others did not agree with me, right?). But you know when the Maddie thing got really serious, and Dave asked what happened, I emailed him and basically told him that no one had actually done anything directly offensive, which is true, in my view of the world.

So when you say, “I think that your misunderstanding suggestion is more appealing and the whole issue of moderation/ facilitation (top-down and bottom-up) is worthy of consideration” – I think that’s simplifying the issue. Yes, people like Jaap and me did some bottom-up facilitation I guess… dunno if that’s what you meant. But I mean, my aim was to make sure people did not feel left out because they found D&G hard (and I am half-way privileged, I *can* actually read them, I just wanted to spend my time experiencing rhizo14 not reading about what inspired the thinking behind it – other people are much more privileged and can read them much easier/faster or had read them before and can jump into discussion; still others would have much more difficulty than me reading them, and were not speaking about it). One important thing, though, is that some people who continue to be in the facebook group STILL sometimes feel there is some elitism going on. I’ve also been told that I’ve got an elitism thing going on, so I’m not pointing fingers at other people here.

I feel like we’ve talked this topic black and blue and are still not seeing eye-to-eye on it. I have a lot of privately-shared info and perspectives on it from both sides, but cannot use it for research. They do, however, influence my own perspective on the issue. And I do know this: No (theorist) one meant to exclude anyone intentionally. No one means to be elitist (I can’t get into their hearts but am pretty sure everyone is/was well-intentioned). However, others did feel excluded and offended. In the same way that the people on the facebook group did not mean to exclude people who were not on it. They just wanted to find a space to talk.

The facebook thing… It would be kind of like me getting upset that people decided to meet in a bar, when I don’t like to go to bars because I am Muslim (not all Muslims are like me, so it’s a choice; I could always go and not drink, but I don’t like being in places where people drink – it’s a conservative Muslim view, and I’m not conservative on all things, but I recently became conservative on this one). There are other exclusions related to technology: synchronous sessions make it difficult for people on certain timezones and with all sorts of restrictions of tech and family responsibilities (I published an entire article on this on HybridPed).

I’ve recently experienced a MOOC where g+ was much more active than facebook and twitter. I did dip into g+ but am not comfy with the platform, so strangely ended up still engaging with the same group who were active on twitter and facebook, even when I commented on g+!!!

Anyway. Thanks as always for pushing me to think further.

I look forward to your blogpost 🙂 I don’t know if it’s been written yet, but I follow your blog so I’m sure I’ll come across it when it’s out inshallah.