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Subject:

ADMIN: FAQ and attachments on Allstat

From:

Matt Whiley <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Matt Whiley <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 19 Oct 1999 16:10:42 +0100 (BST)

Content-Type:

TEXT/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

TEXT/plain (592 lines)

Hi,

There seem to have been a number of Word documents sent to the list
just recently.   Word documents, or any type of attachment come to 
that, shouldn't be sent to Allstat for a number of reasons, including

* Not everyone has a copy of Word.

* Other members may use mail programs that are unable to deal with your
  attachment.
  
* Attachments can be large - this causes problems for members with 
  limited file space and for members using dial-in connections.
  
* Attachments can transmit viruses.

I could go on but I guess you've got the gist of it by now - no 
attachments, please!

On a similar note there have also been a lot of HTML messages cropping
up on the list.  Again these can cause problems for some list members.
Messages sent to the list should be in plain text format only, this is
the only format that ensures that absolutely everyone on the list can
read your message correctly.  If you're going to post to the list 
please be sure you're sending a plain text message, and if you're
not sure please ask someone before you hit "send".

I've included a copy of the FAQ below, it explains all of this and
much, much more.  As ever, any questions or comments can be sent to 
me at

     [log in to unmask]
     
Cheers,

Matt

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Matt Whiley

Department of Statistics                 Phone : +44 (0)141 330 6118
University of Glasgow                    Fax   : +44 (0)141 330 4814
[log in to unmask]             http://www.stats.gla.ac.uk/postgrad
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
[log in to unmask]    http://www.stats.gla.ac.uk/allstat
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Allstat Frequently-Asked Questions (FAQ) List 
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

This document attempts to address most of the questions that arise
regarding the administration of the list, and how it operates. I have
tried to make it as useful as possible, by dealing with the most
common problems. 

The Allstat Introduction (see (17) below) contains additional 
information, including guidelines on what to post and what format to 
follow. 

The FAQ List will be posted to Allstat fairly regularly, and is
archived at Mailbase. 

An HTML version of this file can be accessed through Allstat's
Web site, at the URL
   http://www.stats.gla.ac.uk/allstat/
If you view this version, you will find links to many of the items 
mentioned in the text. The Allstat Introduction, and many other 
resources, are also available through the Web site. 

Members of the list are strongly advised to retain up-to-date copies
of these files (or at least to note the Allstat URL), as they contain a
lot of information on how the list operates. If you have a query
about Allstat, you will often find the solution in these files, and this
can help to reduce the list owner's administrative work. Your
assistance in this is appreciated. 


The questions answered here are as follows: 

  1. What are the different addresses, and what do they mean? 
  2. Is Allstat the correct forum for my message?
  3. What format shall I use to post my message to Allstat?
  4. I've just received a virus warning.  What should I do?
  5. Is commercial advertising permitted on Allstat?
  6. I want to reply to a message on Allstat.  What should I do?
  7. How do I get a list of everyone on Allstat? 
  8. I am going away for a period of time. What should I do? 
  9. I have received a message saying I have been removed from
     the list. Why is this?
     Or: I seem to have been removed from the list. Why? 
 10. How do I (re)join the list? 
 11. Is my name correctly registered? 
 12. Is my address correctly registered? 
 13. I got a message saying I am not registered on Allstat - help! 
 14. How do I leave the list? 
 15. My e-mail address is about to change. What should I do? 
 16. I tried to send a message to the list, but was unable to. Why is
     this? 
 17. What Allstat files are archived? 
 18. How do I retrieve one of these files? 
 19. Can I receive Allstat broadcasts in digest form? 



----------------------------------------------------------------------------


 (1) What are the different addresses, and what do they mean?


     There are four e-mail addresses to note: 

     (a) [log in to unmask] 

         This address automatically broadcasts to the entire
         list. Only members of the list are permitted to use this
         address. If your address is incorrectly registered (see (11)
         below), then you will not be able to post to the list. 

     (b) [log in to unmask] 

         This accesses the Mailbase program and is the one to use
         when sending commands, e.g. leave, index, send 

     (c) [log in to unmask] 

         Messages sent here will come to me, the list owner. Any
         administrative questions about Allstat should be sent here,
         although please note that, as well as this FAQ list, extensive 
         Mailbase documentation is available to explain the facilities
         offered to users. See the Introduction file (item (17) below),
         for more information on Mailbase documentation. 

     (d) [log in to unmask] 

         This address is that of the Mailbase team. Send any
         comments or queries about Mailbase here. 


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


 (2) Is Allstat the correct forum for my message?


     If you have a message you wish to send, and you are not sure 
     if Allstat is appropriate, you are advised to examine the 
     various outlets available to you.  There are mailing lists 
     covering many different areas of statistics, and there are 
     obvious benefits to yourself, and to the recipients of your 
     message, if you ensure it is posted to the correct forum.  
     This is particularly important if your message is of a 
     consultancy nature, or is likely to provoke discussion, and 
     might therefore be more suited to a list other than Allstat.  
     Also, if you have a query about a particular piece of software, 
     you will find that most of the major packages have their own 
     dedicated lists, which you should use.

     There is a document which details many of the statistics-related 
     lists worldwide, including instructions on how to join them.  
     This "list of lists" file is maintained by the owner of the 
     Minitab list on Mailbase, Mike Fuller ([log in to unmask]).  
     To retrieve this file, send a message to
        [log in to unmask]
     with the command
        send minitab list-of-lists

     If you have access to the Web, the Allstat site features links 
     to many other statistical mailing lists.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


 (3) What format shall I use to post my message to Allstat?


     Please send messages in plain text format only.  If documents 
     are available in other formats (e.g. Word, PostScript, etc) 
     then by all means indicate this in your message and give 
     instructions on how to obtain such files (e.g.  on request by 
     personal e-mail, or from a Web or ftp site).  Since not all 
     users are able to handle these alternative formats, please 
     limit your Allstat broadcasts to plain text, and ensure that 
     the text is carried in the main body of your message; do not 
     send attachments to the list.

     Some mailers have the facility to send encoded messages, which 
     are unreadable until decoded.  Please take care that you do not 
     unwittingly select this option.

     If you are looking for replies to a message you are sending, 
     you should ensure that your own e-mail address is listed 
     somewhere in the body of the text.  Some mailers can have 
     difficulties in handling the automatic header.

     When sending seminar notices to the list, it would be most 
     effective to do this once at the beginning of term.  It is 
     generally not very helpful to send last-minute reminders about 
     seminars to a list which is as geographically spread as Allstat.

     Subject Lines

          Members are asked to use meaningful subject lines when 
          sending out broadcasts.  The benefits are obvious, 
	  particularly when browsing through the archives for a 
	  specific message.  In particular, posters are requested to 
	  use clear keywords in subject lines, to give an indication 
	  of content.  The following convention has been adopted:

               JOB              - jobs or studentships
               SEMINAR          - seminar announcements
               CONFERENCE       - conference announcements
               COURSE           - taught course announcements
               WORKSHOP         - workshop announcements
               ANNOUNCE         - other announcements
               QUERY            - for queries
               S/W ADVERT       - for a software advert *
               BOOK ADVERT      - for a book advert *
               ADMIN            - administration messages (from the 
				  list owner)

          A sample subject line may read
               JOB: temporary lectureship at Glasgow University, UK

          Where appropriate, a geographical location should be 
	  included in the subject line.

          * The ADVERT categories are only to be used by the list 
	    owner, in forwarding messages from advertisers.  See 
	    below for the guidelines on advertising on the list.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


 (4) I've just received a virus warning.  What should I do?


     Occasionally, rogue virus alerts crop up, warning of a virus which 
     is spread simply by reading an e-mail.  These are hoaxes, as you 
     cannot catch a computer virus from a plain text e-mail message. 
     Viruses can however be transmitted by attachments (another reason
     for asking people not to send attachments to Allstat).  A virus
     in an attachment will only cause problems if that attachment is
     executed, or in the case of a Word macro virus if that document
     is opened in Word.  It is therefore advisable to check all 
     attachments with a virus scanner before executing or editing them.
     Some mail programs will automatically execute attachments when an
     e-mail is opened, if your e-mail program has this option it is a
     sensible precaution to disable it.
     
     If you are worried about a virus alert, either consult a Virus 
     Information Web site such as 
     
     http://www.ncsa.com/services/consortia/anti-virus/alerthoax.html
     
     or contact the list owner, rather than alarming the list, perhaps 
     unnecessarily.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


 (5) Is commercial advertising permitted on Allstat?


     Commercial advertising is against the JANET Acceptable Use Policy.  
     However, publicising items of potential interest to list members, 
     such as training courses, software etc, can be to the benefit of 
     the list.  If the "publicity" comes from the person likely to make 
     money out of it, then that falls into a grey area.  If you have a 
     message which you feel may come under this category, then you are 
     advised to first send the message to the list owner 
     ([log in to unmask]).  If the message is suitable, the 
     list owner will forward it to the list on your behalf.  In general, 
     "routine" advertising will not be approved; new releases or limited 
     special offers are more likely to be accepted, and shorter messages 
     are recommended (with pointers to sites for further information, if 
     available).

     Job adverts and conference notices are perfectly acceptable, and 
     can be posted directly to the list.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


 (6) I want to reply to a message on Allstat.  What should I do?


     The list is set so that replies to messages are directed to the 
     sender, and not to the list.  This is deliberate.  Generally, if 
     responding to a message, it is best to reply by personal e-mail, 
     and not to the list.  If appropriate, a summary of responses can 
     be sent to the list by the original poster in due course.  Allstat 
     is intended to be an information provider, rather than a 
     discussion list.

     If your mailer does not allow you to see the address of the 
     original poster, and they have not provided a reply address in 
     the body of the message (e.g.  in a signature file), then please 
     note that the archives will contain the address, and you can obtain 
     it there, if you wish to respond.  Please do not be tempted to 
     simply reply to the list.

     Some mailers can be set so that responses, as well as going to the 
     sender, are also copied to the list.  If your mailer is one of 
     these, please ensure that this option is not enabled, and that your 
     response goes only to the sender.

     Occasionally people will send messages to the list asking for help
     with list administration (such as leaving the list, updating their
     e-mail address, etc).  Please do not respond to such messages, leave
     to the list owner, that's what they're there for!


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


 (7) How do I get a list of everyone on Allstat?


     Send a message to 
        [log in to unmask] 
     with the command 
        review allstat 


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


 (8) I am going away for a period of time. What should I do?


     To avoid your mailbox filling up while you are away, you should
     temporarily suspend your Allstat mail. Do this by sending a message
     to 
        [log in to unmask] 
     with the command 
        suspend mail allstat 

     On your return, you can resume mail by sending the command 
        resume mail allstat 
     to the same address. 

     If you're a member of more than one Mailbase list you can 
     suspend/resume your mail from all of these lists by replacing 
     'allstat' with 'all' in the above commands. 

     Remember that you can use the archives to catch up on any messages
     you may have missed. 


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


 (9) I have received a message saying I have been removed from the list. 
     Why is this?

     Or: I seem to have been removed from the list. Why?


     Whenever there is a problem in delivering an Allstat broadcast to an
     address, I receive an error message. If I receive a number of error
     messages about a single address over a period of time, I have to take
     action and remove that address from the list. If I did not do this, my
     mailbox would quickly overflow. In such circumstances, it is not
     always possible to get in touch with the person concerned, to point
     out what is happening. 

     People are not always aware that there are problems in getting
     e-mail through to them, and, so, occasionally, think that they have
     been removed from the list for no reason. Should you find yourself
     removed from the list, not at your own request, then it will be
     because of error messages I received, and I hope you would understand 
     the reason for my action. 

     If your e-mail problems are only temporary (contact your system manager
     or service provider to find out about this), please feel free to rejoin 
     the list once the problems are resolved. Please do not contact me asking
     for copies of the error messages, as I receive too many of them for it
     to be practical to retain them. 


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


(10) How do I (re)join the list?


     Send a message to 
        [log in to unmask] 
     with the command 
        join allstat your name 
     e.g. join allstat Matt T. E. Whiley

     If you have already joined the list, and think your name may have
     been incorrectly registered, simply resend the 'join' command with
     the corrected form of your name.  To check your registration, see
     (11) below.

     Note that you must supply at least two words as a name, so for example 
     M.T.E.Whiley would be rejected (because there are no spaces and it is 
     interpreted as a single word), but M.T.E. Whiley or M. T. E. Whiley 
     are fine.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


(11) Is my name correctly registered?


     If you obtain a review of Allstat (see (7)) and find your name is
     incorrectly registered, simply re-send the 'join' command in (10)
     with the correct form of your name. 


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


(12) Is my address correctly registered?


     Although you may be a member of the list, and appear in a review of
     Allstat (see (7)), it is possible that your address is not absolutely
     correctly registered. To check your registration, send a message to 
        [log in to unmask] 
     with the command 
        listme 

     This will return a list of all the Mailbase lists that your e-mail
     address is registered on. 


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


(13) I got a message saying I am not registered on Allstat - help!


     Mailbase uses the 'From' field of your address to identify you. If
     this does not match exactly with your registration on Allstat, the
     software will not recognize you as a member of the list. So,
     although you may be on the list, receive broadcasts normally, and
     appear in a review of Allstat, if your address doesn't match exactly
     with the registered one, the Mailbase software will not recognize
     you. Consequently, you will be unable to post to the list, suspend
     mail, unsubscribe, etc.

     This situation can arise when your address alters slightly, for
     example changing from 'glasgow' to 'gla'. Often, both forms of
     address will work properly, and you will not be concerned with the
     change. However, the Mailbase software will notice the difference,
     and so it is important that you keep your registration up-to-date. 

     If you find yourself in this position, then please send a note of 
     your old address to me, at 
        [log in to unmask] 
     and I will manually remove it from the list. You should then
     resubscribe yourself to the list under your new address (see (9)
     above). 


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


(14) How do I leave the list?


     Send a message to 
        [log in to unmask] 
     with the command 
        leave allstat 

     Should you find you are unable to unsubscribe yourself from the 
     list, see (13) above. 


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


(15) My e-mail address is about to change. What should I do?


     Before your address changes, you should leave Allstat under your
     old address, by following the procedure in (14) above. 

     Then rejoin the list under your new address, by following the
     procedure in (10). 

     Please follow these instructions if at all possible. Otherwise I have
     to make the change for you, and that involves more administrative
     work for me. If you can make the change yourself, it would be much
     appreciated. 


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


(16) I tried to send a message to the list, but was unable to. 
     Why is this?


     First of all, only members of the list are allowed to send broadcasts.
     If you are on the list, but your address is incorrectly registered, you
     will not be recognized as a list member, and so will be prevented
     from posting to the list. See (12) above for more information. 

     If you are not a member of the list, then you will have to join before
     sending your message (see (10) above).


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


(17) What Allstat files are archived?


     All messages to Allstat are archived, and are available for retrieval.
     Each month's messages are grouped together in a file, and messages
     up to a year old are retained by Mailbase. In addition, there are some
     other files available. To get a list of all the archived files, send a
     message to 
        [log in to unmask] 
     with the command 
        index allstat 
     See also (18) below, for details of the on-line archives.


----------------------------------------------------------------------------


(18) How do I retrieve one of these files?


     Use the 'send' command: for example, to retrieve the Introduction
     file for Allstat, send a message to 
        [log in to unmask] 
     with the command 
        send allstat introduction 

     Alternatively, you can point your Web browser at the URL 
        http://www.stats.gla.ac.uk/allstat/ 

     Accessing the archives is simpler through the daily-updated Web site,
     as individual messages can be selected, and you can sort by date, 
     subject, author and thread. If you retrieve the messages by e-mail,
     you have to request the file containing all the messages for that
     month.  On the Web, it is also possible to search the archives.  



----------------------------------------------------------------------------

(19) Can I receive Allstat broadcasts in digest form?


     As of 3rd August 1998 Mailbase has offered the option of automatically
     receiving messages sent to Allstat bundled together in digest form.

     To receive Allstat messages as a digest, send a message to
        [log in to unmask]
     containing the single line
        set allstat digest

     To change back to receiving messages normally (the default) send a 
     message to the same address containing the single line
        set allstat nodigest




If you have a question which is not covered in this FAQ, you may
find it is dealt with in the Introduction file. 



 Author                  : Dr Stuart G. Young
 Updated                 : 15th January 1999 by Matt Whiley
 Any comments/queries to : [log in to unmask]
 Allstat Web site        : http://www.stats.gla.ac.uk/allstat/





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