This is becoming a fascinating conversation and I'm just butting in to mention the e-zine fineArt forum which is an online historical resource that I know many of you will know about but some may not.
Founded by Ray Lauzzana in 1987 as a bulletin board and email newsletter it became a Gopher in 1992 (sadly all lost I think) and moved to the web in 1994. The most complete archive is held by the National Library of Australia here:
… and the Computer Arts Society (CAS) are hoping to include a more substantial archive in their historical section that is currently being developed.
Also - I've not followed all the posts as I'm currently on the road) but has anyone talked about Carl Leoffler's ArtCom which was on the Well from the 1980's (it certainly pre-dates fineArt forum).
And also - on the fax front there the work of Art Reseaux (Karen O'Rourke) which is later but, for me at least, very interesting.
OK! Butting out
Paul Brown - based in the UK April to October 2013
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Honorary Visiting Professor - Sussex University