Alternatives to a local Usenet server

Una Smith una at
Wed Aug 24 14:41:44 EST 1994

Malcolm Davis <davis at> wrote:

>I commend the bionet staff for offering to provide NNTP service ...


Given the list of public access Usenet sites that Rob Harper
has posted, individual biologists at sites without Usenet should
have a much easier time getting Usenet going locally.  Another
strategy that might work is to contact the Usenet administrator
for a nearby university, and ask for personal NNTP access, with
the understanding that your site will eventually want to obtain
a full feed from that university.

>I think there is a lot to be said for increasing the "regular"
>propogation of the bionet.* hierarchy.  Not just so that every
>freshman can join in (as one poster viewed it), but so that all of the
>downstream scientists can have the advantages of a Usenet connection
>to bionet.


>Which brings me to a comment on the Una/Dave debates.  I, for one, do
>not think there are angels or devils on either side of these debates.

Nor do I.  I would very much like to avoid emotional exchanges, but
not at the expense of the debate altogether.

>I think, however, that bionet.* will not gain propogation by being
>openly disdainful of Usenet "policy" as some posters have seemed.  I
>don't think we should count on security through obscurity either.  If
>our practices are such that they would draw the ire of sysops who are
>propogating bionet.* without much scrutiny, then eventually they will
>find out and there goes the feed.

That's exactly right.  These are precisely the reasons why I reported
the no-vote policy to news.admin.misc.

>Saying that, I don't think that the current rules exceptions for the
> hierarchy should be irksome to many.

I agree:  most news administrators don't care, or believe that there
should be no barriers to the creation and propagation of newsgroups.
The people who make* possible also benefit bionet.*, for most
of the same reasons.  Many global hierarchies have been attempted;
most fail before many people ever hear of them.  I want bionet.* to
flourish, and I think we should take Usenet conventions into account.

	Una Smith			smith-una at

Department of Biology, Yale University, New Haven, CT  06520-8104  USA

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