PHOTOSYN as a Newsgroup

Una Smith smith-una at yale.edu
Mon Dec 7 11:35:36 EST 1992


If the list owner is happy to give over the list to Dave Kristofferson,
then making PHOTOSYN into a Bionet group would be a good idea.  It would
be good to collect all the professional biology groups together.  No
doubt Dave could handle the subscriptions as a group, given a copy of 
the current subscriber list, so current subscribers need not re-subscribe.

I wish that listserver groups were welcome to establish gateways in the
Bionet domain.  Listservers are not going away, and not everyone will
have access to Usenet, no matter how useful Usenet is to those of us who
have it.  And the more biologists who subscribe by e-mail, the more
drudgework Dave et al. have to do rather than providing more interesting
services, like better FAQ sheets.  The listserver program has improved a
lot in the past few years, and horrible bouncing mail problems have become
rare in the 4 or 5 active groups to which I have been subscribed in the 
past year.  So I think the listserver-newsgroup gateway deserves a second
look for Bionet groups, especially with respect to existing listserver
groups that want to join Bionet.

Are you listening, Dave?  The ECOLOG-L mailing list, with nearly 600
subscribers, talked about this for almost a month.  The concensus:  they
would prefer a gate into a new group named, say, bionet.ecology, but they
don't want to give up the listserver.  The Ecological Society of America
uses LISTSERV at UMDD.umd.edu to keep a listing of job and conference
announcements, and a number of other large documents.  The Smithsonian
Institution also runs a listserver for conservation biology, where numerous
documents are stored:  a directory of NGOs, a directory of field stations,
copies of the newsletter Tropinet (published by the ATB), and other stuff.
They might also like to have their mailing list, CONSLINK, gated into a
Bionet group, but I don't think they want to give up the listserver.  And
they shouldn't be forced to just so they can get into Usenet in the right
place.  If Bionet doesn't become more open, the big mailing lists will
probably end up creating another Usenet domain for non-Bionet biology
groups.

-- 

      Una Smith      Biology Department       smith-una at yale.edu
                     Yale University
                     New Haven, CT  06511



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