List Netiquette

From: Dan Knight <dknight_at_email.domain.hidden>
Date: Sun, 15 Jul 2001 10:57:38 -0400

I updated the Netiquette page this morning to address some recent issues involving signatures, name calling, vulgarity, perceived threats, and when it's appropriate to mention an auction on the list. Some of these are good general netiquette guidelines; others are specific to the Low End Mac family of email lists.

Please take a moment to familiarize yourself with this information.


Dan the listmom

updated 2001:07:15

There are informal rules of the Internet which are termed netiquette to help people use proper etiquette within this form of communication. Some examples of poor netiquette are not signing messages, unsubscribing to the posting address instead of the administrative address, or TYPING IN ALL CAPS (which is considered yelling). This is a dynamic environment and netiquette is changing rapidly.

I can't say it much better than this: " goal here is to educate people who participate in mailing lists, since only by improving our list manners will mailing lists continue to become increasingly pleasant and useful." (Adam C. Engst, TidBITS #480.)

Some informal rules for the Low End Mac family of mail lists:

Remember that replies automatically go to the list, not the just the person who posted the message. You need to change the to: address to respond to an individual. (Some other lists, such as Mac-Mgrs and our Swap list, work just the opposite way. On those lists, a reply goes to the original sender by default, not to the list.)

Never send attachments to the list. An attachment may contain a virus, may be in a format others cannot use, may not make it through some mail gateways, makes the message bigger, and will bog down both the list server and the mail server.

Don't send styled text or HTML files; only send plain text. Style text may or may not come through as an attachment, but it is very difficult to read in a plain text email client. Styled text is especially troublesome in digests. The list server is set to reject anything except plain text. (I routinely throw out any email I receive that comes in only as an attachment -- if you can't take the time to send it as plain text, I won't take the time to read it.)

Style your posting -- ASCII style.

Don't use PGP encryption on your messages. A lot of people (probably most) can't even use it.

Please quote only the relevant portion of messages you respond to -- and please quote some of the original message so others know what you're responding to.

"You shouldn't have to wade through gobs of extraneous stuff to get to the meat of the message. You should include just enough to provide a context for the message and no more. (Peter Kimble, my high school CS teacher, now gives his students the rule of thumb that at least half of the lines in an email message should be their own.) If you must include the whole message that you are replying to, include it after your response." (From "A Beginner's Guide to Effective Email", Kaitlin Duck Sherwood <ducky_at_email.domain.hidden> <>.)

"Quoting sparingly does require manual work, since most email programs automatically quote the original message in replies. But failing to edit the original wastes everyone's time and bandwidth." (Adam C. Engst, TidBITS #480.)

Please keep "me too" messages off the list; these are best sent privately, if at all.

Let sleeping threads lie. If it's been over a week since the last posting in a thread, consider it dead and buried.

When asking a question, please list relevant information regarding hardware, software, and version of the Mac OS involved.

Change the subject line when the subject of the thread changes.

When responding to a digest post, be sure to change the subject to match that of the original message. The list server is set to reject replies to the digest otherwise.

You can wander into other Mac-related topics, but try to limit discussion to Mac-related topics (politics, religion, and a lot of other things are off topic as far as Mac lists are concerned). Always treat others courteously.

Signature lines

Mom is watching. The list manager has the right to block posting privileges or ban anyone from the list for vulgarity, trolling, flaming, name calling, threats, or other behavior detrimental to this online community.

Although subscribers may offer specific equipment and services to the list or share an exceptional bargain they have discovered, explicitly commercial postings are prohibited. Any address or domain posting such will be blocked.

Items for sale should generally be posted to the LEM Swap List. Exceptions are made for regional lists (Canada, UK, Australia) and non-Mac lists (Apple II, Lisa, Newton). You many mention a specific item you are auctioning on the appropriate list -- but auction postings are prohibited on the Swap list.

Do not send subscribe, unsubscribe, or mode change messages to the list. Follow the instructions in the footer of each message to unsubscribe or change mode. If that doesn't work, contact <listmom_at_email.domain.hidden>.

Treat your list neighbor as you wish to be treated. Address breaches of netiquette privately, not on the list. Assume the best, not the worst. And please notify <listmom_at_email.domain.hidden> if things seem to be getting out of hand.

Never post private (off-list) correspondence to the list without the permission of the sender.

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Received on 2001-07-15 08:03:47

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