rec.music.makers.saxophone

Welcome to rec.music.makers.saxophone and alt.music.saxophone!

These two newsgroups are inhabited by (more or less) the same people, and you can reach them by posting to either or (preferably) both by "cross-posting" to both. This posting is essentially administrative in nature. It explains why this situation has come about, recommends specific posting practices, and explains how to set about "cross- posting" your saxophone-related message so that it reaches the widest appropriate audience.

An extended FAQ answering many questions relevant to the saxophone and its music is maintained by Bob Kenyon . It is available on the World Wide Web at http://www.bobrk.com/saxfaq/.


The following questions are answered here:

Q.1 Why are there two saxophone newsgroups?
Q.2 Which newsgroup should I post to?
Q.3 How do I set about "cross-posting" my message?
Q.4 My site doesn't receive r.m.m.s/a.m.s/either group. What can I do?
Q.5 My site won't or can't receive either group. Are there any public access news servers?
Q.6 Do I have to read this document every few weeks?
Q.7 Who is responsible for this document?

Q.1 Why are there two saxophone newsgroups?

A.1 alt.music.saxophone was formed in 1994 and quickly became a lively and successful newsgroup community. However, the "alt" hierarchy is not as widely propagated as the standard Usenet ones (comp, news, rec &c.). Some organisations operate a blanket ban on "alt" groups, citing reasons such as the volume of binaries, copyright violations, objection to the topics covered (e.g. sex, drugs and rock'n'roll!), or simply its lack of organisation. For some time, potential readers at such sites were unable to participate in saxophone discussions, and related newsgroups received regular enquiries from would-be readers seeking access. During the spring of 1996, the readers of a.m.s decided to form a more "official" group with a view to moving all discussion to that forum in due course, and r.m.m.s was formed following due process. However, even though it should be more acceptable to system managers than the alt group, r.m.m.s does not yet propagate throughout all of Usenet, and as a result we have two newsgroups dealing with the saxophone. Both newsgroups are available to a large common core of readers, but there are some sites which receive only one or other group. The following posting guidelines are suggested in order to maintain the cohesion of the Usenet saxophone community during this period of transition.

Q.2 Which newsgroup should I post to?

A.2 The relevance of this question depends on whether your newsreading software allows cross-posting. If your software allows "cross-posting", please post new messages and follow-ups to *both* groups using the instructions in A.3.

Note that you can probably cross-post to both groups even though you may be able to read only one of them.

If your software does not allow you to "cross-post", and you have access to only one group, post in that group. If you have access to both groups but your software prevents you from cross-posting, post on the "official" group rec.music.makers.saxophone. Consider carefully before making an additional post to alt.music.saxophone. Remember that most of the readers of that group will see your message on r.m.m.s.

Q.3 So how do I set about "cross-posting" my message?

A.3 It's all quite simple, really! Start by giving your usual "post a new message" command. Then, look at the 'header' lines (either at the top of your post, or in a separate sub-window), and make sure that both groups are named on the header line which begins "Newsgroups: ". In its standard format, the line should look either like this ...

Newsgroups: rec.music.makers.saxophone,alt.music.saxophone
or
Newsgroups: alt.music.saxophone,rec.music.makers.saxophone

Note that there is normally a space after the colon, but none between the newsgroup names. However, a few newsreaders impose their own, different, format -- in other words, your mileage may vary ...

If you are replying to someone else's message and both your and their software is working well, the "Newsgroups: " line should automatically be filled in properly, so the issue of 'cross-posting' need only be of major concern when you are starting a new thread. Nevertheless, it is always a good idea to check that the Newsgroups: line is properly set when replying to other posters. If either group is missing, simply add its name as indicated above.

If there is a Followup-To: line amongst the headers, it should either be empty, or list the same groups as the Newsgroups: line, in the same format. If there isn't a Followup-To: line, don't worry about it.

Since it is possible to do some rather anti-social things by editing header lines, some newsreaders prevent users from changing things in this way. If that's the case, you may have a newsreader which can't cross-post. Chances are that it's lacking in quite a few other features, too, so if you are planning on reading much news, you might consider changing over to some industrial-strength software such as rn/xrn/trn or nn (unix), NewsWatcher or MacSoup (Mac) or .... (....)

Q.4 My site doesn't receive r.m.m.s/a.m.s/either group. What can I do?

A.4 You should contact the person who maintains the news system at your site. In principal, this person should be available at an address like usenet@your.site.goes.here. Otherwise postmaster@your.site should be able to tell you how to contact the news adminstrator. (BTW -- It is conceivable that there is no-one administering the system. Modern news software is very reliable, and there are an increasing number of sites which are, in effect, running on autopilot. Not a good idea, but it happens.) Once you have located the adminstrator, ask him politely to issue a local newgroup message to form the missing group. ('Politely', because in many organisations, running the Usenet system is considered a low-priority or voluntary task, and is more tolerated than encouraged by management). The admin can determine whether articles are being propagated to your site by examining the news logs (specifically, the history file). If they are not being received, she may have to make special arrangements with upstream sites so that they also carry the group, and to some extent you are also at the mercy of those admins, too. It is possible that your request for the group will be rejected on grounds such as those indicated in A.1. Unless you are in a position to change policy, your only alternatives are to buy private Internet access from another source or to use one of the public access news services.

Q.5 My site won't or can't receive either group. Are there any public access news servers?

A.5 There are a number of sites which are willing to supply news to all comers, and in principal all you need to do is to point your newsreader software at the relevant site. These include sites such as zippo.com, (which also offers an added-value subscription service), and pubnews.demon.co.uk.

Alternatively, you may be able read news over the World Wide Web. One major archive of Usenet postings can be found and searched via

http://www.dejanews.com/
but Dejanews did (?does) not include alt postings, so you may only be able to access r.m.m.s in this way. You can also find recent news via
http://www.altavista.digital.com/
AltaVista does have copies of postings to a.m.s, although their record for news as a whole does not go as far back as Dejanews'. Zippo's archives are also available via
http://www.zippo.com/

A note of warning: Some organisations have a policy on use of Internet facilities, and connecting to public access sites such as those listed above may be in breach of that policy, with possible disciplinary consequences. In a few cases, these policies are enforced by barring connection to the sites, and it is not possible to gain access to them.

Q.6 Do I have to read this document every few weeks?

A.6 No, it is intended for new and occasional readers of the saxophone newsgroups. Use your newsreader's "kill file" capability to "kill" all articles with the title "FAQ : posting guidelines for saxophone newsgroups". If your newsreader doesn't have a kill file facility, consider upgrading to an industrial-strength model; see A.3 for a few suggestions.

Q.7 Who is responsible for this document?

A.7 It was prepared by Russ Evans (mailto: russ@seismo.demon.co.uk) Constructive criticism, praise and a Selmer S80 Series III soprano at a knock-down price are all welcome!

Version 0.2 (draft) of 02 Feb 97.


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This page created and modified hourly or monthly by Bob R. Kenyon ©1996-2006copy;1996-2008