Electronic Literature Organization
The Electronic Literature Organization, of which I have been a director since its foundation, has ceased to make any positive contribution to the field and has, instead, become an active impediment and a continuing embarrassment.
No qualities are more essential to scholarship and research than accuracy and truthfulness. The ELO has repeatedly failed to adhere to these demands, upon which research ultimately depends.
After much reflection and discussion with many of the most active artists and researchers in our discipline, I conclude that ELO obstructs progress in the field it was formed to serve. It dismays those whom it should encourage, disparages or ignores work that it should honor, and invites the derision of those who prize accuracy and rigor.
It is time for the field to reclaim the integrity of its literature, to enjoy the many pleasures of the fine works that so many have labored to create and to interpret, and to continue the ongoing work of creating innovative tools that build upon and extend the accomplishments we have collectively achieved over the course of two decades.
- Scott Johnson (with whom I shared a demo table way back at Hypertext '87) writes "Go Mark Go... We all need to take stands".
- Scott Rettberg (Stockton College, former ELO executive director) disagrees, writing that "Mark Bernstein resigned from the ELO today -- allegedly because he believes that it has 'ceased to make any positive contribution to the field.'" (No allegation necessary: I do believe it. I said so. I confess!)
- Diane Greco (Cyborg: Engineering the Body Electric) says it's all ELOver. "His resignation letter is stirring -- Mark sees a promising future for eliterature quite apart from ELO and makes the case that eliterature is actually better off without it."