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> 350 and posting lay-out

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  • > 350 and posting lay-out

    Dear Biomch-L readers,

    Yesterday, some 10 new subscriptions to our list brought the membership
    well over 350 world-wide; about half of our subscribers is located on
    the North American continent as you can find out for yourself by sending
    the one-line request REVIEW BIOMCH-L (COUNTRIES to listserv@hearn.bitnet
    or Biomch-L@nic.surfnet.nl.

    Considering some recent postings and the ease with which one can hit the
    RETURN key for final transmission, here are a few points and suggestions:

    (1) Unlike many other lists, Biomch-L's profile has been set in such a
    way that issuing the REPLY command to your mailer software (VAX/VMS in
    my case) should address the original poster rather than the whole list.
    For posting a reply to the list, you must type in the list's EARN/BITNET
    address Biomch-L@hearn.bitnet or its equivalent Internet address
    Biomch-L@nic.surfnet.nl. In this way, too speady a response does not have
    to be regretted very much once sent (I know of a few cases of this kind!)
    since the original poster only will have the benefit of receiving it.

    (2) More generally, it makes sense to quietly prepare a posting within
    your editor, hard-copy and proofread it, and only then send it out. The
    ergonomics of screen editing are such that it is too easy to overlook simple
    typing errors (as I know from dire experience). While I do try to edit the
    monthly archives at the beginning of each following month, it is a pain in
    the neck and I'd prefer to use my time in a more creative manner.

    (3) In particular, *don't* make your lines too long because of the
    wrap-around properties of many screen/software systems; for example,
    some mailers have automatic quoting/indentation facilities that will
    lengthen, and thus possibly wrap-around, the quoted lines, and this
    does not make for good readability. Besides, lenghty lines do not
    make for easy reading at all. Just compare this paragraph with the
    preceeding one ...

    (4) If your message is important, do try to write it in proper English;
    after all, you *are* publishing to a rather large readership, and your
    posting is archived for others to retrieve. As with published papers,
    first impressions on lay-out etc. are important. Last but not least,
    choose a telling Subject: line lest readers with 20 - 50 email messages
    per day will not bother to read your posting in the first place. If
    you really have problems, ask a colleague to proofread it (you may ask
    me, but I may regret this offer...).

    For seasoned email users like most of you, the above remarks are super-
    fluous, no doubt; my apologies to them!

    Herman J. Woltring, Eindhoven/NL

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