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Netiquette

Be sure to read this before you post to the pd-related lists found at http://lists.puredata.info

Language

The language of all pd-related lists hosted at http://lists.puredata.info is English. However, the lists are read internationally. If you feel your English is not so good, do not be ashamed; most subscribers aren't native English speakers.

If you are absolutely sure that your mail does not make sense in English, you can include an _additional_ version in your own language. Make sure that you remember to include the English version so that those who don't understand your language can still read and reply to your message.

Subject

  • Always use a subject that explains what you are going to write about. Do not use subjects like "PLEASE HELP," "i have a question," or "you have won!"

  • When you are answering a thread in which the subject does not reflect the content of the discussion anymore (because people tend to drift away from topics), feel free to change the subject accordingly.

  • It is generally a good idea to hint in the subject that you have changed it, like "troubles with ALSA-midi (was: building a drum-machine)".

  • Don't let the subject get too long: "software-piracy (was: why not use Max/MSP (was: ugly interfaces (was: look at my new patch)))" is probably not so good.

Threads

If you are receiving a list in digest mode (in which you get all the new postings to the list in one large email once a day), change the subject appropriately -- "PD-list Digest, Vol 6, Issue 11" tells the possible readers far less than "FFTs? and PD."

If you want to start a new thread (that is, bring up a new topic), please, please do start a new thread by sending a fresh email which is not a reply; do not take a random post to the list and reply to this post with a changed subject and body just because you don't know the email address of the list. A lot of people with decent mail readers view their mails in "thread view", so they know which mail is a reply to which other mail. It is quite annoying if you cannot find the mail regarding the possibilities to play back a sound file (which you know has the answer to your troubles) just because it is deep within a thread regarding the problems of firewalls on W32-XP!

So never reply to an email on the list, if you don't have anything to say about the content of the email you are replying to.

Never ever reply to a digested email if you do not refer to exactly one email in the digest.

Reply-To

  • The "Reply-To"-field in the header of emails coming from the pd-related lists is the _original author_ and not the list itself.

  • The "List-Post"-field in the header of emails points to the address of the list.

  • If you want to reply to the list instead of the original author, you will have to use "Reply-All" or "Reply-List" (preferably the later if your mail client supports it).

  • This specific setting is a constant source of trouble, as new posters often answer only to the original author of the mail instead of the entire list.

  • Read http://web.archive.org/web/20080215014000/http://woozle.org/~neale/papers/reply-to-still-harmful for an explanation why it is like this (and links to other opinions)

  • "Reply-All" will often send emails to both the list and the original author. If you do not want to receive duplicate answers to you emails set the "Avoid duplicate copies of messages?" in the Mailman-webinterface for your account to "Yes"

Quoting

HTML vs plain-text

Please post your messages in plain text format and avoid HTML formatted mail.

Many subscribers read their mail with a text based mailing software, which displays HTML directly. Not only is sending HTML mail considered unfriendly, you also risk getting ignored by these users. And it might be, that one of them is the only one who knows the answer to your question. So be nice and don't sent HTML, send plain text instead.

Attachments

Avoid attached textfiles or images when possible. In most cases it's a better choice to insert your text in the email. If you can't explain the issue without screenshot however it is a good idea to attach one. Make sure the file format can be read by any receiver. Propriety file fomats should not be attached. Send a .pdf and not a .doc if you think the layout is important. Fellow subscribers may not have a fast connection or read the mails with a mobile device where they have to pay the data transmitted, so don't post large attachments. Put them on a file server and post the link to download.

Rejected posts

  • Anyone with a valid email-account can subscribe to the pd-related lists; however, due to the well-known spam problem, posting to the list is restricted to members.

  • Mail from an email address which is not subscribed to the list won't get through to any of these lists.

  • All mail from email addresses which are not subscribed to the list will be held for approval by a human being.

  • Mail which is considered spam will be discarded (they will silently vanish).

  • Mail that appears to come from someone interested in PD _will be rejected_ and the author will get a rejection email.

  • You may use multiple email accounts to send email; however, each address must be subscribed to the list. Otherwise, your postings will be rejected by the moderators if you try to post from an address that is not subscribed.

  • In order to not receive the list postings on each subscribed address, you can set the delivery options to "no-mail" for your secondary accounts via the web interface for your account. This way you can send email to the list from a lot of different accounts, but you will receive the mail at only one address.

A special note to gmail-users: If you want to subscribe your gmail-account to one of the lists, please be aware that emails often originate from '<user>@googlemail.com', even though you might use '<user>@gmail.com' as your preferred address. Currently, google treats both addresses as synonyms, however, for the mailinglist, these are two different email-addresses! If you subscribe one but your emails appear to come from the other, your posts will be rejected.

Announcements

  • Announcements should go to the pd-announce list, and they should only go to this list.

  • All emails that are sent via pd-announce will automatically be forwarded to pd-list.

Therefore, if you post to both pd-announce and pd-list, you will reach 0 (zero!) more people then by just posting to pd-announce, but you risk annoying all subscribers of pd-list, because they receive your email several times. Usually this is not what you intend.

Cross postings

Cross postings are not advised. If you have a GEM question, feel free to ask this on the Pd List or the GEM-dev list, but not at both of them.

Social Networks

  • Please do not add any of the Pd-related lists to your social network (facebook, linkedin, twitter,... you name it).

Social networks are about communities of people, so you should invite real people (if you feel the need) but not other communities. Doing so defeats the idea of social networking on the one hand, while on the other hand for a mailinglist these invitations are pure spam.

Signatures

  • Please consider to abdicate the use of signatures (with nice quotes or your political opinion) because they will make searching in the mailinglist more difficult as the words in the signatures will lead to false positives in the search result.

Respect for Newcomers

The Pure Data User list has a reputation for being "scary" or "intimidating" to newcomers. Consequently, veteran members of the list should make a concerted effort to welcome new members and treat them with respect.

  • When replying to a newcomer, please refrain from obscure acronyms, sarcastic language, and flippant criticism.

  • If a newcomer doesn't follow one of the guidelines outlined on the Netiquette page, simply add a p.s. to the end of your reply with a link and a few words pointing them to the relevant part of the guide. Don't spend 50+ words in a didactic response for what already exists in half the space in a neutral tone.

  • Try to "qualify" a newcomer's level of knowledge before replying. A musician who only knows how to send email on a Windows machine shouldn't need to learn about re-compiling Pd in order to fix a problem. If the only present solution is extremely technical, make sure to mention that.

  • When newcomers post a question about or criticism of some specific aspect of Pd that has been addressed at length in the past on the same list, please resist the urge to express exasperation at a rehash of the topic. The aspect under discussion may well stem from a deep design flaw or kludge within Pd. Annoyance at newcomers who point these out sets up an "insider/outsider" relationship with an implication that joining the community means learning to ignore or put up with the shortcomings of the software. In most cases this goes directly against the spirit of the software; in the few cases where it doesn't, remaining exasperation-free has no negative consequences.



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