Newsgroups & Listservs
Internet Newsgroups and Listservs: what there was before there was the Web.
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.
- alt.music.folklore ...and alt.folklore.music
- rec.music.folk (and .filk, for those who enjoy parodies)
- rec.music.makers (with subgroups for instruments, songwriting, etc.)
- rec.crafts (with subgroups for quilting, pottery, carving, etc.)
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:|
|BANJO-L||all styles of banjo firstname.lastname@example.org|
|BGRASS-L||bluegrass and old-time email@example.com|
|BLUES-L||blues music and firstname.lastname@example.org|
|CELTIC-L||Celtic culture & email@example.com|
|DANCE-L||moderated list for international folk and traditional firstname.lastname@example.org|
|FIDDLE-L||for all types of fiddle email@example.com|
|FOLKBIZ||folk musician firstname.lastname@example.org|
|FOLKDJ-L||aimed at folks who host folk music programs on the email@example.com|
|FOLKLORE||all aspects of firstname.lastname@example.org|
|FOLK_MUSIC||news, reviews & concert listings for folk musicians and email@example.com|
|FOLKTALK||traditional and contemporary folk firstname.lastname@example.org|
|FOLKVENU||aimed at presenters of folk email@example.com|
|IRTRAD-D||moderated digest of messages from IRTRAD-Lfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|IRTRAD-L||Irish traditional email@example.com|
|SACRED HARP / SHAPE-NOTE SINGING||shape-note firstname.lastname@example.org (subscribe fasola)|
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