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The moderators at Screen-L recently received a post advertising an
auction on eBay for some film scripts.  This raises an interesting
policy issue for something we couldn't have foreseen when we began
Screen-L in 1991:

Should advertisements for Web auctions of film/TV-related materials be
permitted?

On the one hand, Screen-L has always permitted postings from
commercial entities.  E.g., film/TV publishers/distributors/magazines
who wish to announce new materials are allowed.  So, there is some
precedence for advertisements on Screen-L.

Moreover, an auction site such as eBay can be a good source for
off-brand film/video equipment (e.g., super-8 projectors) and film/TV
memorabilia--which can be useful in the teaching/research of film/TV.
If a Screen-L subscriber posts a search for such material, would there
be anything wrong in someone saying, "Oh yeah, you can find it on
eBay--auction #xxxxxx"?

On the other hand, auction sites can encourage naked opportunism,
commercialism, and consumerism.  Is this something Screen-L should
tacitly endorse?

And should we distribute and thereby promote, e.g., someone selling a
pristine one-sheet of WILD WILD WEST (which is truly a colossal
stinker of a film, incidentally).

As moderators of Screen-L we firmly believe that LESS moderating is
BETTER moderating and we tend to err on the side of leniency, but we
are guided by the wishes of the Screen-L membership.  (The poster of
the eBay ad was not a Screen-L subscriber, by the way.)

So.  Your thoughts on Screen-L distributing Web auction notices?

Feel free to post your opinion to [log in to unmask] or to me
personally.  Normally we don't distribute messages ABOUT Screen-L ON
Screen-L, but when it comes to policy issues we think it's important
to have a general, open discussion.

--
Jeremy Butler
Screen-L Moderator
[log in to unmask]
ScreenSite http://www.tcf.ua.edu/ScreenSite
Telecommunication & Film/University of Alabama/Tuscaloosa

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http://bama.ua.edu/archives/screen-l.html