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    Dear Biomch-l readers,

    Following the discussion last year and early this year on access to the
    subscribers' names and email addresses, I think that the appended discussion
    might be of interest -- even beyond the BIOMCH-L readership !

    Herman J. Woltring


    From: TUERC5::ELERCAMA 10-NOV-1989 18:12 WET
    To: JNET%"concealed@somewhere"
    Subj: Welcome on Biomch-l!

    Dear ,

    Welcome on BIOMCH-L - I hope that our conversation in (...) has been helpful
    to you.

    Incidentally, I see (but only because I'm the list moderator) that you have used
    the SET BIOMCH-L CONCEAL option: you are the second one doing so. Of course,
    once you submit something to the list (and I would hope that you might do so!),
    anonymity would be lost -- like when publishing in a journal, instead of just
    reading it.

    Regards, and good luck in your work -- Herman J. Woltring.


    Date: Mon, 13 Nov 89 18:30 EST
    Subject: "Conceal"; Address list.
    To: elercama@heitue5

    Dear Herman,

    The reason why I sent the "Conceal" message to LISTSERV is that at this
    point I prefer to be cautious. I don't know if you have this problem in Hol-
    land, but in the United States there is a horrible practice with the regular
    postal system called "junk mail". Every day, my mailbox is full of garbage
    from companies that want me to buy all kinds of things, from computer furniture
    to baseballs, passing through concert tickets (not free!) and coffee cups.
    This happens to everybody in the United States, not only to me. And this
    happens also at my home address. My "real" mail is only a small fraction of
    what I receive in my mailbox. At this point, my E-mail addres is [perfectly]
    clean. I only receive useful things in it: "real" mail, and I have a fear
    (paranoia?) that commercial companies are eventually going to get a hold of
    the electronic address list in BIOMCH-L, and then my present "clean" E-Mail
    account is going to turn into a "junk mail" deposit place!! Therefore, I
    thought that it would be wiser, now at the beginning of my involvement with
    BIOMCH-L, to stay more concealed. After I get a better feel for BIOMCH-L, I
    may want to put my address un-concealed in the list. But at this time, I
    think I would rather stay in a "concealed" form for a while. By the way, what
    message would I have to send if and when I decide to become "un-concealed" ?

    Even though at this time my own address is concealed, I would like to
    get the general address list of the other members of BIOMCH-L, so that I can
    establish one-on-one communication with some of them. I tried to obtain this
    list a few days ago, but apparently it failed. I sent the command:


    The answer was:


    And that was the last thing that I received from Biomch-L, and I don't
    know what it means -- I never received any "punch format" anything. Maybe
    you can tell me what I did wrong!

    Thanks for everything --


    From: TUERC5::ELERCAMA 14-NOV-1989 12:08 WET
    To: Jnet%"concealed@somewhere"
    Subj: Concealment etc.

    Dear ,

    Thanks for your extensive reply. I should like to resent your letter onto
    BIOMCH-L (leaving your name and email i.d. out of it, plus the reference to
    (...); could let me know your feelings in this respect ?

    There has been some discussion on junk email and improper commercial activities
    in the past on BIOMCH-L, but to date, no problems have been communicated or
    perceived by me in this respect. Please note that EARN/BITNET/NETNORTH are
    academic networks that do NOT allow outright commercial activities; of course,
    this does not exclude the possibility of commercial-academic collaboration.
    Thus, a few producers of kinematic equipment monitor the list, and hopefully
    will contribute to any pertinent discussions. In addition, they are accessible
    in this way for pertinent customer queries on already purchased equipment.

    If you are merely a passive observer, that is fine, but I would really prefer
    active participation on the list which, as a matter of course, will entail
    relinquishing anonymity, in the same fashion as you would not anonimously
    publish in, e.g., the Journal of Biomechanics. By means of the SET BIOMCH-L
    NOCONCEAL command, you can make your email address available to fellow-sub-
    scribers who issue the REVIEW BIOMCH-L (COUNTRIES command. I feel that the
    REVIEW=PRIVATE feature of BIOMCH-L (i.e., subscribers only can retrieve the
    names and email addresses of all un-concealed subscribers) should be respected
    by those who retrieve their addresses ...

    The reason that you did not receive a PUNCH file must be local to your computer
    system; since you are on a VAX-cluster under JNET, did you issue the RECEIVE
    command at DCL level? The text below was obtained by issuing the command SEND
    NETSERV@HEARN GET NODENTRY SOMEWHERE at DCL level. I would suggest that you get
    in touch with one of the contact persons mentioned below if you cannot find
    the requested file via RECEIVE. Alternatively, you might re-issue the request
    with the text F=NETDATA appended to it; you should receive it then via RECEIVE.

    Looking forward to a reaction as regards posting your anonymized letter onto

    With kind regards -- Herman J. Woltring.


    Date: Tue, 14 Nov 89 09:49 EST
    Subject: Junk mail.
    To: elercama@heitue5

    Dear Herman,

    I definitely want active participation in Biomch-L. But there are two
    forms of participation (at least). One thing is for me to send a message;
    a different thing is to be on a list that can be obtained by other members as
    a "LIST". A company might miss my name and address if I just send a message
    with my identification every now and then, but they won't miss me if I am on
    a LIST!!

    On the other hand, you have a very good point that BITNET etc. are not
    commercial. I had not thought about that, and it is a great relief: Not
    everyone can put their garbage out to everybody through BITNET. That is
    good. I hope it stays that way. Last year the wife of the president of
    our university sent a message on E-Mail to all faculty and staff, asking
    them to contribute to United Way, a very worthy charitable cause, but still
    technically "junk mail". This was the first time that E-Mail had been used
    that way at our university, and I believe it may have been the last, since
    I understand that she received extremely NEGATIVE feedback on her "great

    In any case, your statements about the non-commercial nature of BITNET
    make me realize that the dangers of junk mail on E-Mail are smaller than I
    thought. For the time being, I will prefer to stay "concealed", but I may
    decide to "un-conceal" in the near future. I wonder if you have heard the
    joke: "Just because you are paranoid does not mean that they are NOT out to
    get you."

    Yes, I think it is OK for you to send out an anonymous version of our
    discussion on junk mail.

    I will investigate locally about why I did not receive the listing.
    We have just migrated to the VAX from (another) machine, and I hardly know
    anything about how the VAX works!

    Thanks for everything --



    The log-files for Biomch-L are publicly accessible, so even incidental
    discussions (and their originators' identities) can be retrieved by interested
    parties ... [HJW]