by Adam C. Engst <firstname.lastname@example.org>
I'd like to commend Chuq Von Rospach of Apple for recently setting up two new mailing lists, one devoted to discussing issues surrounding the use of Macintosh Internet client software, such as Eudora, Anarchie, and Netscape, and the other dedicated to discussing the Macintosh Internet server software, including programs like MacHTTP, FTPd, and MailShare.
Although both topics are often discussed in the <comp.sys.mac.comm> newsgroup on Usenet, many people (myself included) have much more trouble keeping up with a Usenet newsgroup than a mailing list. In addition, <comp.sys.mac.comm> has become a very high volume group with many discussions about communications issues that aren't related to the Internet. Nothing wrong with that, but it makes it difficult to pull out Internet-specific discussions.
To subscribe to the first list, apple-internet-users, send email to <email@example.com> and put "subscribe apple-internet-users Your Full Name" alone in the body of the message. To post a message to the group after you have subscribed (the list won't accept postings from non-members), send it to <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
To subscribe to the second list, apple-internet-providers, send email to <email@example.com> and put "subscribe apple-internet-providers Your Full Name" alone in the body of the message. To post a message to the group after you have subscribed (the list won't accept postings from non-members), send it to <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
Although the tenor of these lists will no doubt be determined by the participants, I'd encourage people to think about the community aspect of a mailing list. Beginners often ask "stupid" (where "stupid" is defined as "unfamiliar with the relevant technology") questions; if we help these people initially, they'll be in a position to want to help others later. By setting up a forum where everyone can help everyone else, it's less likely that the more knowledgeable people will burn out quickly. And, since Chuq is archiving every post to the mailing lists, new people can browse back to find answers without having to ask. Hopefully Chuq will get a WAIS server, AppleSearch, or something set up so that we can search the information as well.