I'm not sure if I understand this sudden concern about attribution of
information when it comes to the very simple matter of reporting sightings.
In several years of editing Twitcher's Corner for Wingspan, I never credited
observers by name for their good finds, nor was there ever any expectation
on the part of the observers that I should do so. Nor is this the case now.
There was a generic note thanking various various regional newsletters and
forums, including Birding-Aus, and that was it. Had individual observers
been credited, it would have chewed up space that could have been better
used to detail more records.
The point, as Alan McBride has surely made clear, is the wider and more
rapid dissemination of information for birders. The fact is Birding-Aus
isn't the sole repository for up-to-date information on the web about
Australian birds and if it was, there would be no reason for Bird-O to
exist. As I recall, we used to rely on telephones, and not mobile ones, to
find out quickly about rare birds. And you could only rely on getting those
phone calls if you knew the right people. Otherwise you'd be reading about
it in the Bird Observer, Wingspan or whatever months later.
If I recall correctly, this debate started weeks ago on June 19 when Bob
Inglis also took umbrage at Bird-O - not for failing to put his name next to
a sighting, but ironically for including it in a Bird-O report at all
perhaps I will cop a spray for taking Bob's name in vain again, but that
will only illustrate how ridiculous and precious this argument has become.
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