From Usenet Big-8 Management Board
From: Tim Skirvin <>
Subject: 3rd RFD: talk.current-events moderated
Newsgroups: news.announce.newgroups, news.groups, misc.headlines,
Followup-To: news.groups
Date: Mon, 28 Aug 2006 12:30:04 -0700

                      REQUEST FOR DISCUSSION (RFD)
                  moderated group talk.current-events

This is a formal Request For Discussion (RFD) for the creation of the
moderated Usenet newsgroup, talk.current-events.

NEWSGROUPS LINE: talk.current-events

talk.current-events	Major news events of worldwide interest. (Moderated)

RATIONALE: talk.current-events

Virtually every hierarchy has some kind of newsgroup or hierarchy to talk
about the events of the day.  The Big-8's group is misc.headlines; but this
group is poorly named, and is used primarily a haven for crossposted
arguments and announcements.  This proposal suggests a moderated
alternative to misc.headlines; some crossposting will still be allowed,
but restricted to avoid massively crossposted flamewars.

An additional part of this proposal is to lay the groundwork for the
rapid creation of newsgroups to discuss specific major world events, under
the talk.current-events.* hierarchy.  Details of this discussion will be
hashed out in news.groups; a few suggestions include moderating all of
these sub-groups with a similar moderation policy as the parent t.c-e, and
automatically removing these sub-groups after six months.  The details of
this plan, including when/if it will be implemented, are beyond the scope
of this proposal.


talk.current-events is a lightly-moderated newsgroup to discuss the world
events of the day.  Discussion should not be restricted to that which
is currently being discussed in the news media; instead, journalism by the
users of the group is encouraged.  Discussion is also not restricted to
events in the United States, or any other specific country.

Copyright violations (especially reprints of news articles) are explicitly
banned; repeat offenders will be blacklisted from the group.  Instead,
users are encouraged to just offer URLs, or short excerpts from the articles.

The topics of Permanent Floating Flamewars are off topic unless they
involve discussion of substantial current events.  As an example,
discussion of gun control is off topic unless discussion involves
proposed legislation, a major crime involving guns, court challeneges
to existing gun laws, or similar substantial current events.

The moderator will maintain and publish a list of groups to which crossposts
are allowed (the "crossposting whitelist"); this list specifically excludes
*.politics.* and other purely-political newsgroups (at least initially).

In the event of a major world event with long-lasting repercussions, the
moderator of talk.current-events may work with the administrators of the
Big-8 Hierarchies to create additional short- or long-term groups in the
talk.current-events.* hierarchy, on short notice and outside of the standard
newsgroup creation process - for example talk.current-events.katrina to
discuss the events of August 2005.

MODERATION POLICY: talk.current-events

talk.current-events is a robo-moderated newsgroup.  The 'bot will enforce
the following policies:

  * Articles may be crossposted to no more than four groups, all of which
    must be on the crossposting whitelist (as described in the charter).

  * Followups must be set to no more than two groups, all of which must be
    on the crossposting whitelist.  If followups are not set and the
    message is crossposted to more than two groups, then the 'bot will set
    followups to just talk.current-events.

  * Postings should be formatted within 80 characters in width (limiting
    your lines to 76 characters is recommended).

  * Postings must be in plain text.  In particular no HTML or mixed text
    and HTML posts will be allowed, nor will binary messages (with the
    exception of small cryptographic signatures, such as GPG or S/MIME).

  * Mail address and thread blacklisting may be implemented at the
    discretion of the moderator; in addition, a number of anti-spam
    filters will be applied to all submissions.

  * Posting with a non-replyable/munged address is discouraged. Posters who
    feel that they must use a munged address are encouraged to append
    ".invalid" to the end of the email address, to indicate that the address
    is not deliverable.

Rejected posts will be returned to the poster with an explanation of what
problems were encountered.

MODERATOR INFO: talk.current-events

Technical Moderator:      Tim Skirvin <>
Moderator:                Dave Sill <>

Article Submissions:
Administrative Contact:

The moderators are seeking additional candidates for the moderation team
in order to ensure minimal posting delays and to avoid any appearance of
bias.  We would especially like to find moderators in other time zones,
countries/continents, etc.



For more information on the newsgroup creation process, please see:

Those who wish to influence the development of this RFD and its final
resolution should subscribe to news.groups and participate in the
relevant threads in that newsgroup.  This is both a courtesy to groups
in which discussion of creating a new group is off-topic as well as the
best method of making sure that one's comments or criticisms are heard.

All discussion of active proposals should be posted to news.groups.

To this end, the followup header of this RFD has been set to

If desired by the readership of closely affected groups, the discussion
may be crossposted to those groups, but care must be taken to ensure
that all discussion appears in news.groups as well.


This document has been posted to the following newsgroups:



Tim Skirvin <>


2006-08-28     3rd RFD
2006-08-17     2nd RFD
2006-08-11     1st RFD written