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Why isn't this group moderated?

Don Gilbert gilbertd at bio.indiana.edu
Thu Aug 12 21:24:32 EST 1999

In general many of us would like to see all bionet groups moderated, 
to the extent of automatic removal of spam and off-topic posts.
The FlyBase group discussed options for moderating bionet.drosophila
a while back, but it was decided this is not in our pot of things to
do (which is full enough otherwise).  Some of you who use this
group should take the time to work with the bionet news sponsors
(see frequent 'BIOSCI/bionet miniFAQ & Fundraiser' posts), and
appeal to the Drosophila Board about this, and someone(s) would need 
to commit to some moderation time.

For bionet.drosophila, the moderator listed is Michael Ashburner 
(m.ashburner at gen.cam.ac.uk), though I believe he has turned over
any moderation issues of this newsgroup to the Drosophila Board.

>From Jan 1999 bionet.drosophila news, the Drosophila Board president
is Larry Goldstein (lgoldstein at ucsd.edu).  There is also an e-mail
drop box,  flyboard at morgan.harvard.edu.

Hope this helps,


From: biohelp (BIOSCI Administrator)
Subject: BIOSCI/bionet miniFAQ & Fundraiser
Date: 4 Aug 1999 02:00:28 -0700
NNTP-Posting-Host: net.bio.net
Xref: news.indiana.edu bionet.drosophila:4409


This BIOSCI "miniFAQ" is designed to answer the questions that come up
the *most frequently*.  The main BIOSCI FAQ (Frequently Asked
Questions) is accessible on the World Wide Web at URL

If you can not find an answer to your question in this or other
documentation, the BIOSCI technical support staff answers e-mail
queries sent to
                  biosci-help at net.bio.net

[... cut ...]

What can BIOSCI/bionet do to protect its newsgroups?
The only solution currently available is to moderate the newsgroup.
If this newsgroup is already moderated, then you are in good shape.
Moderation protects the USENET distribution from about 95% of the
spams that are being sent to date and protects the mailing lists
completely.  Moderation means, however, that someone has to take the
time to review each message before it goes out.  We have set up
software here that simply allows the moderator to forward to an
address at net.bio.net messages that (s)he wishes to have distributed.
This takes no more time than that needed to read the message and pass
it on, say about 1 min. per message.

Most newsgroups currently have a discussion leader who is responsible
for their newsgroup.  The discussions leaders and their e-mail
addresses are listed in the BIOSCI Information Sheet which is
available on the Web at http://www.bio.net/.  If a newsgroup is being
hit with too many junk postings, please contact the discussion leader
for that group and see if there is interest in moderating the group.

We will moderate any of our newsgroups if the discussion leader tells
us that the readership of the group wishes to do so and if a moderator
is willing to do the work.  For most BIOSCI/bionet groups, this
entails only a few minutes of work each day.

Moderating a newsgroup will resolve probably 95% of the junk postings
on the USENET distribution.  Unfortunately there are easy ways for
determined spammers to override the moderation mechanism on USENET,
but we can protect our e-mail subscribers from unwanted postings if
the newsgroup is moderated.  You can also access our newsgroups over
the WWW at URL http://www.bio.net.  While this Web interface will not
stop spammers from trying to post to the groups, this will give you
yet another way, besides using USENET news, to keep the junk out of
your personal mail files.  For those of you with local USENET news
systems, the Web interface will also give you faster access to new
newsgroups and recent postings.

-- d.gilbert--bioinformatics--indiana-u--bloomington-in-47405
-- gilbertd at bio.indiana.edu

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