I agree with you completely, It should be your contributions to the site that determine your XP. But that's obivously not what happened with merlyn. Someone saw that he was around and decided that they'd give him another 1_000_000 XP just because of who he is. He has made valuable contributions to the site (even without the extra XP he'd be in the top 10 monks), but I'm not sure what good the 'free' XP do.
I guess my question is really: where do you draw the line? Is there a list of Perl Names who would be given free XP if they started frequenting the site?--
European Perl Conference - Sept 22/24 2000, ICA, London