From Usenet Big-8 Management Board
From: Jim Riley <>
Subject: RFD: remove moderated
Newsgroups: news.announce.newgroups, news.groups,,, comp.os.msdos.misc
Followup-To: news.groups
Date: Thu, 05 Oct 2006 11:52:14 -0700

                      REQUEST FOR DISCUSSION (RFD)

This is a formal Request For Discussion (RFD) to remove the moderated


There have been no approved messages since February 1996.

Distribution of binary programs via Usenet, and in particular the Big
8 comp.binaries.* groups is no longer particularly useful or viable.
The binaries groups were created before there was widespread access to
the Internet, so that propagation of binaries via Usenet was a viable
alternative to distribution via floppies or other removal storage
media sent by mail.

Binaries newsgroups typically have very short expiration periods, so
someone interested in acquiring programs would have to constantly
monitor a newsgroup, or hope that the programs were archived so that
they can be accessed via the internet (such as by FTP).  But if the
programs can be sent via internet, there is no need for the Usenet

Google does not archive binaries in newsgroups.  So even though they
maintain archives of the comp.binaries.* groups, they do not archive
most of the content (the reason for existence of the group in the
first place).

Over the years, programs have generally become larger and more
complex.  When transmitted by Usenet this may require the programs be
distributed in many parts, some of which may be lost.  Again,
transmission via FTP is more reliable.

The moderators of binaries newsgroups may be legally responsible for
the reliability of software, whether it is legal to distribute, and
whether it is free of viruses and trojans.  Many may not be willing to
assume that responsibility, and unmoderated binaries groups are not
acceptable in the Big 8.

This proposal is one of several that will removal all groups in the
comp.binaries.* hierarchy except comp.binaries.cbm.


The newsgroup was created in June 1987.  In
November 1987 it was converted to an unmoderated newsgroup.  In May
1988, it was once again converted to a moderated newsgroup.

Historically, the group was primarily for posting of MS-DOS binaries,
and this emphasis was later confirmed with the creation of
comp.binaries.os2 in March 1990 and in
January 1993.

>From time to time, there was discussion about renaming the group to
comp.binaries.msdos, but apparently this was never a formal proposal.


The full (draft) group removal procedure is documented here:

Those who wish to comment on this request to remove this newsgroup should
subscribe to news.groups and participate in the relevant threads in that

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

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

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:


The proponent will also post pointers to:


Jim Riley <>


2006-10-05     1st RFD