Moderating the bionet.* newsgroups

Una Smith una at
Wed Mar 1 16:08:47 EST 1995

kristoff at (David Kristofferson) writes:

>>Finally, if everyone was moving away from mail to news then there
>>would be less of a need for some of these issues; unfortunately both
>>kinds of usage continue to increase although the percentage seems to
>>be gradually shifting towards news.

Reading newsgroups via e-mail subscription is, for many readers, the
only means of participation.  The BIOSCI folks could drop the mailing
lists any time they decide to.  Dave:  what *is* your intention with
respect to the BIOSCI mailing lists?  Are you willing to go on record
as supporting all existing gated mailing lists for some number of
years into the future?

skoufos at writes:

>... Anybody that has no access to news, can read posts through
>the gopher and the web sites and they can post using e-mail.

Not true, unfortunately.  Many e-mail subscribers *cannot* read via
gopher or WWW sites, because they are not on Internet hosts.  Gopher
and WWW clients are Internet tools;  e-mail is carried on many non-
Internet networks.  Dropping e-mail support would be especially bad
for scientists outside the United States, in those parts of the world
where Internet usage is growing most rapidly.

>... people that want to use bionet, may *have to* ask their sysops 
>to install news software, which IMHO is OK since the service is *free*.

No, it isn't free.  Yale University pays a lot of money for its Usenet
feed;  so do many other Usenet sites.  Also, managing a local Usenet
server is a substantial job.  The individual user might not be aware of
the costs involved, but Usenet is *not* cheap.  We may shift the costs
from BIOSCI to elsewhere, but these costs still exist, and they are not

	Una Smith			una.smith at

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

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