commercial advertisements on the mycology discussion group

Peter Herman herman at
Thu May 30 01:51:28 EST 1996

Jack Murphy (jmurphy at TFM.FMNH.ORG) wrote:
: Dear fellow mycologists;
:         It seems that there has been an increase in the number of commercial
: advertisements that have found their way into our group lately.  I may be
: overreacting, but I'm bombarded enough with advertisements and would like to
: do what I can to discourage this practice.  My first inclination is to send
: numerous long messages back to these advertisers, as a way to fill up their
: RAM or hard drive or modem or whatever and waste as much of their time as
: they have ours.  Is this a bad idea?  Does anyone more internet-literate
: than I have any suggestions how we as a community can discourage this behavior?

Hi Jack,

	Actually it is a bad idea to send long angry messages back for a
few reasons 1) the "spammers" often don't have a proper return address so
it comes back to you as "returned mail" which serves to clog up YOUR
mailbox, not theirs :-( Sometimes you can track down the actual source if
your newsreader doesn't strip headers. 2) The turkeys won't get the
message anyhow and 3) it does nothing to educate those who just don't know
net etiquite but who would use the groups properly if they were politely
	Having said that, let me also say that I am so irritated by the 
ads decreasing the signal to noise ratio that I have quit some groups.  My 
response to the problem, if I suspect that the offender falls into group 
3 above, is to send a short note saying that ads are an inappropriate use 
of biosci.* groups, even if their product is high quality and of potential 
interest to some of the group's readers.  I then include the section from 
the biosci FAQ dealing with commercial postings.  If anyone wants, I can 
send you a copy of my "canned reply".  For advertizers in group 1-2, the 
best idea is to ignore them and if they are repeaters, add them to your 
kill file.  Most news readers allow you to remove postings on a 
particular topic or from a particular source before you ever see them


R. Peter Herman				email	Peter.Herman at
Sveriges Lantbruksuniversitet		Phone:	+46 18 67 12 20
Inst. f. Markvetenskap			Fax:	+46 18 67 27 95
S750 07 Uppsala, Sweden		

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