Newsgroups & Listservs

Internet Newsgroups and Listservs: what there was before there was the Web.

Usenet Newsgroups

Newsgroups (Usenet discussion groups) are essentially electronic bulletin boards, accessed through a news reader or through a website like GoogleGroups. A better newsgroup analogy might be a very large cocktail party with hundreds of conversations (“threads”) going on at once. But it’s better than a real cocktail party: you have a running catalogue of who’s talking about what, and you needn’t get stuck with a crashing bore. Plus, all these conversations are archived and searchable.

Note: Before posting a question, it’s polite to search first for a “Frequently Asked Questions” (FAQ) list. Also search through existing threads; the answer is usually there without your asking. Google’s search facility is excellent, and very powerful.

There are numerous newsgroups relating to folk music, dance and crafts. This list is just a hint of what is available. If you can’t find it on Usenet, you probably didn’t need it anyway.

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Listservs (eMailing Lists)

Listservs are email mailing lists set up to discuss specific topics. Some listservs have a moderator to monitor the discussion topics, but most are unmoderated. This list (compiled several years ago) will give you an idea of what’s available.

Subscribe to a list by sending an e-mail message to the address listed. In the body of the message, type subscribe listname your name, substituting the listserv’s name and your full name. Leave the subject line blank. When you receive an acceptance e-mail back, save the message since it has the instructions for the list, including how to unsubscribe.

List Name Topic Send message to:
BALLAD-L ballads majordomo@indiana.edu
BANJO-L all styles of banjo music listproc@ucdavis.edu
BGRASS-L bluegrass and old-time music listserv@lsv.uky.edu
BLUES-L blues music and performers listserv@brownvm.brown.edu
CELTIC-L Celtic culture & tradition listserv@listserv.hea.ie
DANCE-L moderated list for international folk and traditional dance listserv@nic.surfnet.nl
FIDDLE-L for all types of fiddle music listserv@brownvm.brown.edu
FOLKBIZ folk musician issues listserv@psuvm.psu.edu
FOLKDJ-L aimed at folks who host folk music programs on the radio listserv@psuvm.psu.edu
FOLKLORE all aspects of folklore listserv@tamvm1.tamu.edu
FOLK_MUSIC news, reviews & concert listings for folk musicians and singer/songwriters majordomo@nysernet.org
FOLKTALK traditional and contemporary folk music listserver@leo.vsla.edu
FOLKVENU aimed at presenters of folk music listserv@psuvm.psu.edu
IRTRAD-D moderated digest of messages from IRTRAD-L listserv@listserv.hea.ie
IRTRAD-L Irish traditional music listserv@listserv.hea.ie
SACRED HARP / SHAPE-NOTE SINGING shape-note singing majordomo@tahiti.umhc.umn.edu (subscribe fasola)

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Funding Acknowledgments

logos: Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, Cultural Alliance of York County, Cultural Enrichment Fund

The Susquehanna Folk Music Society (SFMS) is supported by our members and many generous organizations.

Funding is provided by the Cultural Enrichment Fund and by the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, administered locally by the Cultural Alliance of York County.

logo: National Endowment for the Arts logo: Pennsylvania Council on the Arts logo: CUltural Alliance of York County logo: CUltural Enrichment Fund