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newsgroup status report

Thu Jun 18 15:57:49 EST 1998

To all,

This recent message from Jon has reminded me of the pivotal role he has
played and continues to play in the operation of the Plant Ed Newsgroup.
I'd like to thank Jon for his efforts in maintaining this very valuable
service.  I have gained an immense amount of useful information from its
subscribers.  Thanks Jon.


p.s.  As a matter of fact, I vote that we DOUBLE Jon's pay!

Dr. Robert R. Wise
Member, Education Committee of the American Society of Plant Physiologists
Department of Biology and Microbiology
University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh
Oshkosh, WI  54901

(920) 424-3404 tel
(920) 424-1101 fax
wise at uwosh.edu
>I just spoke with the BIOSCI administrator and have some information to
>To give newcomers a bit of history, about a year ago we were flooded with
>spam messages (junk mail) prompting us to consider becoming a moderated
>group.  We discussed the pros and cons here and voted overwhelmingly to
>become moderated.  In my subsequent conversations with the BIOSCI
>administrator the possibility of electronic spam filtering was raised, and
>the switch to moderation was postponed.  Since the rate of spams went way
>down I assumed we were being filtered, but I just learned that we are not.
>Today we discussed some of the problems with filtering and I now appreciate
>how difficult a task it is.  The current filtering software is being tested
>on another newsgroup and the rates of false positives and false negatives
>are fairly high.
>Since the rate of spams to Plant-ed is still relatively low, we agreed to
>not do anything right now, and to await the next generation of spam
>filtering software.  We might be the newsgroup it is tested on.  If for
>some reason the rate of spams increases dramatically before filtering is
>possible we will invoke moderation and look at our alternatives.
>Thanks for your tolerance through all of this.  My recommendation to you is
>to delete junk messages as quickly as possible.  Don't think about them and
>don't respond to them (to Plant-ed or to the sender).  Keep posting your
>always-interesting questions and suggestions about teaching plant biology,
>and this will continue to be a useful resource for the community.
>Jon Monroe (Plant-ed discussion co-leader)
>  Jonathan Monroe                voice:  540-568-6649 (office)
>  Department of Biology                  540-568-6045 (lab)
>  James Madison University       fax:    540-568-3333
>  Harrisonburg, VA 22807-0001    e-mail: monroejd at jmu.edu
>    http://www.jmu.edu/biology/biofac/jmonroe/jmonroe.html

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