>At 08:05 AM 5/3/99 +1200, Olwen Williams wrote:
> >people like it as it is. One reason for moderating (apart from
> >wars) was that many people complained about the level of mail, and the
> >off-topic posts.
>Can you define "moderating"? Reading this thread, it seems that one who
>tries to keep the posts on topic (by pressuring the poster) is sometimes
>considered a moderator. I figure the list is not moderated if a post
>makes it to the subscribers without human approval. Is that what you meant?
I think there are two forms of moderation. 'Active' moderation
requires the list manager to approve every post that goes to the
list, while 'passive' moderation involves the list manager stepping
in to control or stop postings that breach list guidelines. The usual
sanction for passive moderation is removal from the list of those who
won't toe the line.
Other comments in this thread have dealt with tightly controlled
lists. My own list is rather different. In an effort to create a
[WARNING! ghastly 'Wired' buzzword imminent!] 'virtual community'
I've allowed lots of discussion that's way off the list's central
topic (Australian mountain biking, if anyone cares). Since my list
deals with something that people do for fun, I have deliberately kept
things informal, stepping in only to kill discussions that are both
off topic and hugely irritating, such as Mac Vs PC flamefests and
passings-on of virus warnings.
My main moderation technique when such is needed is a friendly but
firm email, off the list, to the problem subscriber, followed by
delisting if they don't get a clue. I'm sure I'm not the only list
mangler who has found that dealing with list 'discipline' on-list is
a recipe for disaster.
John Stevenson -- firstname.lastname@example.org
List manager, MTB-OZ
The MTB-OZ FAQ, full of useful and sometimes not so useful
information, can be found at http://members.xoom.com/mtboz/ and at