RFD: sci.ethnobiology

Peter Gordon Werner Peter.Werner at lambada.oit.unc.edu
Mon Apr 11 17:57:20 EST 1994


NAME:       sci.ethnobiology

STATUS:     unmoderated

PROPONENT:  Peter Werner (boe666 at u.washington.edu) 

RATIONALE:

There is presently no Usenet newsgroup for the discussion of ethnobiology.
Ethnobiological topics are scattered among various newsgroups and mailing
lists.  Because of this, much of the cross-disciplinary discussion
necessitated by the very nature of ethnobiology doesn't take place.  This
newsgroup would create a place specifically for the discussion of
ethnobiological topics.

CHARTER:

sci.ethnobiology is a newsgroup for the discussion of ethnobiology and its
many subfields including ethnobotany, ethnomycology, ethnozoology,
ethnomedicine, ethnopharmacology, ethnopsychiatry, ethnoecology, and
ethnotaxonomy.  Related topics in economic botany, pharmacognosy and
pharmacology of naturally-occurring substances, and human ecology are also
welcome.  An interdisciplinary approach to the ethnobiological questions
is encouraged.

What this newsgroup isn't:

Ethnobiology is sometimes confused with biological anthropology. 
Biological anthropology is, in fact, a synonym for physical anthropology. 
Many topics in physical anthropology, such as the biological aspects of
human ecology, are relevant to sci.ethnobiology.  However, discussion of
physical anthropology per se belongs on sci.anthropology.

This newsgroup is not alt.drugs.natural.  While scientific discussion of
the use of psychoactive plants in various cultures and their pharmacognosy
and pharmacology is both relevant and welcome, "How do I get high from
this" and "Where can I get some of that" threads are not appropriate to
this newsgroup.  These belong on alt.drugs.  Discussion of drug
legalization belongs on talk.politics.drugs unless there's a particularly
ethnobiological angle of this issue being discussed.

"What herbs can I use to cure my headaches", etc. aren't appropriate here
either.  Discussion of herbs that can cure headaches, etc. is certainly
relevant to this newsgroup, but threads specifically looking just for home
remedies belong on alt.folklore.herbs.  If one can derive some personal
health benefit from something discussed on sci.ethnobiology, that's great,
but its not the focus of this newsgroup.

Ethnobiological questions have a political side and these topics are
appropriate to this newsgroup.  However, most discussion of environmental
politics belongs on talk.environment and alt.save-the-earth.  The kind of
blind cross-posting that takes place from these groups to sci.environment
should not take place here.

CROSSPOSTING: 
This RFD is crossposted in the following groups:

	alt.drugs			news.announce.newgroups
	alt.folklore.herbs		news.groups
	bionet.agroforestry		rec.food.historic
	bionet.announce			sci.anthropology
	bionet.biology.tropical		sci.bio
	bionet.general			sci.bio.ecology
	bionet.mycology			sci.med
	bionet.plants

Several of these groups are gated on to mailing lists:

	Newsgroup			List
	
	bionet.agroforestry		AGROFORESTRY			
	bionet.announce			BIONEWS			
	bionet.biology.tropical		TROPICAL-BIOLOGY
	bionet.general			BIOFORUM
	bionet.mycology			MYCOLOGY		
	bionet.plants			PLANT-BIOLOGY
	sci.bio.ecology			ECOLOG -L

This RFD has also been sent to these mailing lists:

	Indigenous Knowledge List (INDKNOW%UWAVM.BITNET)
	Myconet Medlist (medlist at myconet.org)


What is the Process of Creating a Newsgroup
-----------------------------------------------------

>(a) RFD: Discussion, i.e., public hearing to take place in the newsgroup 
     news.groups for 21-30 days 
 (b) CFV: Call for votes (the voting period will be between 22-30 days)
 (c) Counting of votes and public display of votes
 (d) Announcement of new newsgroup

(a)-->(b) assumes no major disagreements about this newsgroup during
discussion.  (c)-->(d) assumes that the vote is favorable, i.e., Y> N+100
and Y> (2/3)(Y+N).
Y being the number of YES votes, N being the number of NO votes for the
creation of the proposed newsgroup.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Peter Werner							4/7/1993
boe666 at u.washington.edu
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