> I would be very interested to hear how large these lists are. I am
> curious to know from the actual experience of list owners, just how large
> can a list get without losing a cozy feel and functional quality?
> Are we talking 200, 2000 people? Is there much degradation of discussion
> due to a lack of threading as occurs with newsgroups and so forth? At
> what size to people start quitting en mass because of volume,
> noise/signal ratio etc.?
I had some complaints about too much traffic at around 100, but although
the lists are both at around 500 now, the quality of the conversations
has improved and there is no problem following threads. I think this is
due in part to the fact that these lists have had time to grow at a
gradual rate. Newcomers a one or two a day, they lurk for awhile, get a
good sense of the regulars, and fit in after a bit.
Also, I've done advertising for the lists in places where the people
interested in these topics would hang out. This is both on-line
(advertizing on other lists, gopher services) and in paper publications.
I trek about on foot and contact people about this personally. I think
this sort of effort pays off in list quality.
Also, I do a _lotta_ list management, talking to individuals behind the
list scenes, use appropriate prompt conversations, etc. Lotta work, but
work it does.