demon.news Mini-FAQ v0.96 beta

Please read this FAQ before posting

Introduction:

This FAQ was written as an attempt to cut down, if not eliminate entirely (well, one can hope), the amount of off-topic posting in demon.news by increasing visibility of a document in addition to the Which Newsgroup FAQ that explains the purpose of this newsgroup.

Q: What is demon.news for?

demon.news is for discussion about current newsgroups in the demon.* hierarchy and the creation of new newsgroups. It may also be used as a medium for announcements about the demon.* hierarchy by Demon Internet.

It is NOT for "news" about Demon Internet, nor adverts of any kind, nor discussion about Demon's news server, nor requests for other groups or hierarchies.

That's all?
That's all. Nothing else. Anything else is off-topic and is very annoying and is anyway likely to be ignored.

Q: So what is the correct newgroup for my comment/question?

See the Which Newsgroup FAQ that is posted to this and many other demon.* newgroups on a weekly basis. It is also available at: <ftp://ftp.demon.co.uk/pub/doc/general/whichgrp.faq> or see the web site at: <http://www.whirlnet.demon.co.uk/demon/>
A quick pointer: if it's to do with Demon themselves (not your system) try demon.service
Important announcements by Demon are posted to demon.announce - it is highly recommended that all customers subscribe to this group.

Q: How does demon.news work?

Write a proposal (a 'Request For Discussion' or RFD) for a new newsgroup and post it to see if you get any support for it. You should be aware, however, that there are often reasons why the proposed group is unnecessary. Some common reasons follow in the next section.

Q: What might cause a group proposal to be rejected?

These are four relatively common reasons that newsgroup proposals are rejected:

"The traffic is being handled perfectly well in another group"
[an example of this: a proposal for demon.ip.support.win98, and one for demon.ip.support.ie5 - it was said that demon.ip.support.win95 and demon.ip.support.ie4 respectively handle the few questions perfectly well]

"There is no traffic to justify the creation of this group"
[obviously when you are proposing a new newsgroup you must have enough traffic about that topic appearing elsewhere to justify the group]

"The group is not demon-specific"
[a proposal such as "a group where Demon customers can talk about music" would be turned down because of this reason. There are many newsgroups out there that can handle such a topic much better and wider]

Of course, this is Demon Internet's own newsgroup hierarchy, and they will obviously have the final say as to whether a proposed group is to be created or not.

Q: Who looks after the demon.* hierarchy?

demon.* is the hierarchy for Demon Internet. Their newsmaster (reachable at newsmaster@demon.net) is the person who issues the control messages. Recently, all control messages have been and will be signed with the "demon.news" PGP key, available from: <ftp://ftp.demon.co.uk/pub/news/doc/demon.news.txt>

Q: How do I request Demon's news server to carry a newsgroup that it doesn't currently carry?

Do NOT ask in demon.news! Mail newsmaster@demon.net requesting for it to be added. It would be best to include a sample article so that he can find out how to get the group.

Q: What about other newsgroup hierarchies?

I cannot go into much depth here, but simply there are two groups of newsgroups you should be interested in. Local groups, despite often being propogated worldwide, are intended for inhabitents/users of that particular area or service. The uk.* newsgroups is widely used and has a comprehensive variety of groups available. See <http://www.usenet.org.uk/> for more information.
The "big 8" are the main global hierarchies. These were the original Usenet - comp.*, humanities.*, misc.*, news.*, rec.*, sci.*, soc.* and talk.* Most newsgroup names are self-explanatory, but it is still almost essential to read a group for a few days to learn what is going on, what it is for, and whether your comment is already being discussed, before diving in.

Other local groups exist for almost all areas of the world, including wales.*, scot.*, ni.* (Northern Ireland), ie.* (Ireland) and nl.* (The Netherlands).

More detail is available in the demon.ip.support.newuser FAQ posted weekly to demon.answers and demon.ip.support.newuser, and also at <http://www.musonix.demon.co.uk/newuser/>

Q: How do I create a new newsgroup in another newsgroup hierarchy?

This has nothing to do with demon.news! demon.news is only for newsgroups in the demon.* hierarchy. Most newsgroup hierarchies have a *.config or *.news group to discuss the creation of new groups. As a quick pointer:

alt.* hierarchy: alt.config

"big 8" (comp, humanities, misc, news, rec, sci, soc, talk): news.announce.newgroups and news.groups

uk.* hierarchy: uk.net.news.announce and uk.net.news.config, also see http://www.usenet.org.uk/

For further information see section 9.2 of the demon.ip.support.newuser FAQ (posted weekly to demon.answers and demon.ip.support.newuser)

Thanks to...
Tez Boyes, Richard Clayton, Alan Grunwald, amongst others.

Mail any comments etc to me, Alan Ford, at <alan@whirlnet.demon.co.uk>