[access-uk] Discussion Topics and Subject Lines (From the Moderator)

  • From: "George Bell" <george@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <access-uk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 6 Dec 2008 14:35:36 -0000

Hi all,

My apologies for not jumping in here with my Moderator's hat on
sooner.  My wife, who works with me, had a serious neck operation just
over two weeks ago, and so I've been doing two people jobs at work,
then home to do the shopping, cooking, etc., leaving little time for
anything else. However, she is now doing some retail therapy
(shopping), and so is clearly on the mend.

The purpose of access-uk list is essentially for the discussion of
technology access related issues.  This in itself covers a very wide
and often complex field.  From time to time, off topic but general
interest questions, such as AFB postage, do arise, and provided they
don't result in lengthy discussion, I generally don't put my
proverbial boot in.

However, lately there have been some issues which would have been
better raised on something like the vi-gen list. These are of course
also of general interest to many members here, but do cross the
boundary of this list's purpose of technology issues.

Subject lines are also becoming rather sloppy of late.  Please try to
keep the Subject brief and meaningful.  With apologies to the recent
sender, if you are skimming through subject lines, something like
"Help Please", means nothing.  But "Favourites Folder - Help Please."
tells those interested what you need help with.

Bad spelling in a subject line can also make it difficult, or even
impossible, to search archives for a topic. (Not to mention some weird
pronunciation from your screen reader).  I know it can be difficult,
especially with product names like "NVIDIA" where it sounds like
"invidia" or "envidia", but that doesn't help the guy with a video
card problem who is looking through the archives for messages about
NVIDIA cards.

And finally, please don't hijack someone's message to start a new
thread - and if you do, at the very least, change the subject line.
Best of course is to start a new message to the list, sent to

Just to explain this point, many people sort their new messages by
Subject or sometimes Thread (Often called "Conversation").  The
"Thread" of a message is actually the Subject of the original message
and is buried in the message headers which you seldom see.  Even if
you change the Subject in a reply, the Thread remains unchanged.

Indeed this message is in reply to the Thread called, "Open Note to
The Mod", but the Subject has been changed to, "Discussion Topics and
Subject Lines".  In theory, if your messages are sorted by Subject, it
will appear in the list under D for "discussion".  If sorted by
"Thread" or "Conversation" it will appear under O for "open".

I hope I don't appear to be too draconian here, but above all, the
list is here to help people, and also to help people help themselves.
Observing a few simple rules makes things much more helpful all round.

George Bell

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