In fact, it is just like war in another way. Different strategies are called for in different situations. In a not-quite-fully-moderated mailing list-type forum like silklist (where there is at least some trolling and many, many of the discussions on matters of national policy go way off track notwithstanding the presence of at least one professor on the list), you are better off linking to your opinion from your own list because you can never control what other people say about you. All you can do is control your own reaction. Note that in this silklist thread, you need to read my comments in conjunction with the silklist thread. Otherwise, you are likely to make the same mistake as at least one person on the discussion did. He assumed that what I said on silklist was all there was to what I had said (but, of course, that was not true). The strategy I used was simple : realizing that there was trolling going on on silk list, I simply started linking to my own List from the first post on silk list (and it continued with every post from there onwards). This way, I prevented what could have been an utter disaster for me because moderators will sometimes moderate out your replies to a forum but not that of others. By maintaining control of what gets said about me, I got to control the outcome of the debate. And finally, one caveat : do not try this at home or at work. You might make people extremely unhappy. End of Internet debating lesson.
Update (Jan 3): Updated post a little to fix typos, etc.