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Africa ( soc.culture.african )
 
From [email protected] Fri Jan 17 18:32:12 1997
Path: uunet!bounce-back
From: Prema Qadir <[email protected]>
Newsgroups: news.announce.newgroups,news.groups,soc.culture.african,soc.culture.south-africa,soc.culture.nigeria,soc.culture.liberia,soc.culture.sierra-leone,soc.culture.ethiopia.misc,soc.genealogy.african
Subject: RFD: soc.culture.african reorganization
Followup-To: news.groups
Date: 17 Jan 1997 23:32:09 -0000
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Archive-Name: soc.culture.african-reorg
Xref: uunet news.announce.newgroups:9506 news.groups:247183 soc.culture.african:66082 soc.culture.south-africa:27275 soc.culture.nigeria:30616 soc.culture.liberia:2610 soc.culture.sierra-leone:2881 soc.culture.ethiopia.misc:1585 soc.genealogy.african:3444

                     REQUEST FOR DISCUSSION (RFD)
moderated group soc.culture.african.moderated (renames soc.culture.african)
              unmoderated group soc.culture.african.horn
              unmoderated group soc.culture.african.arts
          unmoderated group soc.culture.african.west-africa
               unmoderated group talk.politics.african

Newsgroup line:
soc.culture.african.arts	African arts.
soc.culture.african.horn	Culture, peoples, and affairs of Horn of Africa.
soc.culture.african.moderated	African culture, peoples, and affairs. (Moderated)
soc.culture.african.west-africa	Affairs of West Africa.
talk.politics.african	Current political and social issues in Africa.

RATIONALE: all groups

A few years ago, soc.culture.african was created to discuss issues
regarding the culture and peoples of the African continent. Over the
years, some national and regional newsgroups in the soc.culture.*
hierarchy have sprouted off this newsgroup. In spite of these, the
group has witnessed continued growth and diversification. This has
brought with it its attendant problems, such as off-topic and irrele-
vant posts, junks mails, spams, and other posts on topics that should
otherwise have been directed to or discussed in appropriate
newsgroups, had they been available. Therefore, it has become
necessary to re- organize soc.culture.african in order to make it more
useful to its numerous and varied readers.

RATIONALE: soc.culture.african.moderated

Soc.culture.african was created few years ago as an unmoderated newsgroup.
In recent times, off-topic posts have infested it greatly, to the extent
that many of its regular readers are scared away from contributing to the
on-goings or find it difficult get valuable items of information. New
readers entering the group looking for serious discussion are leaving in
disgust. This particularly impacts Africans coming on-line from Africa,
or recently arrived in western countries, who do not consider the
rudeness of flaming acceptable. The regular readers have requested that
it be moderated to remove off-topic and massively cross-posted articles.

RATIONALE: soc.culture.african.horn

The Horn of Africa is a region of Africa with a great history, cultures
and rapid political changes.  The Horn of Africa comprises the following
countries: Ethiopia, Somalia, Eritrea, Djibutou, etc. Although some
national newsgroups have emerged from this region, there are many issues
of broader dimensions which cannot be discussed fully in any of the
existing newsgroups. There is a need for a forum to discuss issues of
common interest to the peoples of this historically rich subregion,
especially issues which have tended to divide rather than unite the
diverse nations in the Horn of Africa. There are other aspects of the
culture, history and sociopolitics of this region that have no better
forum for discussion at this moment.

RATIONALE: Soc.culture.african.arts

African art is a significant subject that can sustain discussion
on a variety of matters almost indefinitely. There are many issues
that are potentially controversial, and much that is up for debate.
By virtue of the lack of systematic record keeping of items discovered
in (and extracted from) Africa, there is a large body of work that
has not been accurately documented. African art is an intense subject.
There is much information, both accurate and inaccurate. There are
innumerable issues that warrant discussion, and we sincerely believe
that a newsgroup dedicated to the subject is well deserved. African
art has had a major influence on the art world in many respects, and
much of this has been glossed over in mainstream art circles. It is
pertinent and necessary to develop a focussed forum on the USENET
that encourages and facilitates discussion on issues concerning
African art. Experts and interested readers would do well to have
a USENET-based forum to discuss the learned issues associated with
African arts.

RATIONALE: soc.culture.african.west-africa

West Africa is a 16-nation community, often referred to as the ECOWAS,
which stands for Economic Community of West African States. West
African states make up a region of Africa with great historical past
and cultural linkage. Although some member states within this subregion
have established their own national newsgroups, there still exist many
issues of broader dimensions which cannot be discussed fully in any
of the existing newsgroups. Hence, the need for a USENET-based news-
group where issues of common interest to this subregion can be
discussed.

RATIONALE: soc.politics.african

The desire to moderate soc.culture.african should not deny netizens
access to an all-comers discussions on current issues pertaining to
Africa and her peoples. Therefore, soc.politics.african is proposed
to fill the void which the creation of a moderated soc.culture.african
newsgroup may create. Such newsgroups are generally accepted as good
companions to existing USENET newsgroups which are up for moderation.

END RATIONALE

CHARTER: soc.culture.african.moderated

Soc.culture.african is a moderated forum for all discussions, debates,
and information about Africa and her peoples.  Therefore, Africans
within and outside the African continent and friends of Africa all
over the world or all persons interested in Africa, irrespective of
nationality, race, creed, sex, age, or language, who can follow
USENET netiquette, basic rules of polite human interaction, and any
further requirements imposed by the charter are welcome to parti-
cipate. Postings can cover any topic of choice provided it has some-
thing to do with Africa. This means all social, cultural, political,
musical,geographical, scientific, marital, health, technical, legal,
and other topics that are, in one way or another, related to African
affairs. Postings can also include news, opinions, observations,
sports, humor, announcements, or requests. If it has anything to do
with Africa, it can be discussed.

Status and Rules
----------------
Soc.culture.african.moderated shall be a moderated newsgroup. All
articles posted must have something to do with Africa or the peoples
living therein. Insults, flames or unnecessary criticism of a group
or a person will be discouraged by the moderators. Anyone will be
able to post to this newsgroup. However, being free to post should
be considered a privilege and not a right. Hence, junk, hate, sexist,
racist, and massively cross-posted articles will be strongly disc-
ouraged by the moderators. Most importantly, everyone is responsible
for what one posts. Please, read the netiquette rules in
news.announce.newusers before posting your first article to this
newsgroup, and endeavor to stick to them whenever posting articles.

Moderation Policy:
------------------
The role of the moderators is to ensure that the conditions of the
charter are met by any submissions. Submissions shall be evaluated
as to whether or not they (a) are on-topic, (b) meet netiquette, and
(c) meet any other standards as defined in the charter. The forwarding
of articles to soc.culture.african.moderated by moderators shall be
in a timely manner. Note: The moderators shall not enforce any cens-
orship of opinions or views, no matter how strongly expressed.

We believe that moderation is not equal to censorship and shall never
be allowed to degenerate to censorship. Nevertheless, we also believe
that a newsgroup should be free of irrelevant articles. The following
shall be off-topic in soc.culture.african.moderated:

1) Posts not related to the purposes of soc.culture.african.moderated

2) Posts that exceed 75 characters per line.

3) Crossposts to soc.culture.african are permitted only if they
   satisfy the charter of soc.culture.african.moderated. Official
   RFDs and CFVs crossposted to other African-interest newsgroups
   will be allowed.

4) "Me too" posts, "make money fast" and "try it, it works" type of
   posts, and posts that contain an unreasonable amount of quoted
   text. As a general rule, a post will be rejected if less than 1/3
   of it is a new text. Intensely repetitive posts, unapproved
   anonymous posts, no matter the information contained therein,
   will be rejected.

5) Commercial advertisements or personal advertisements that have
   nothing to do with Africa or Africans living at home or abroad;
   "spam" articles; and robogenerated articles. Moderators shall not
   be held responsible for any injury resulting from any
   African-related ads which they would approve.

6) Anti-African articles. (Note that an "anti-african" article is an
   article of which the original purpose is to denigrate Africans or
   Africa, or to cause hatred of Africans or Africa by people from
   other continents, races, and colors. Anti-African is not the same
   as "anti-African-governments". Again, if you don't understand this
   distinction, contact the moderators with your submission.)

7) Posts containing profanity or excessive rudeness; posts that lack
   appropriate civility. While well-placed heckles are acceptable,
   flamewars are not. Any post full of personal abuse, slander or
   libel, or unauthorized reference to private e-mail addresses or
   mailing lists shall also be rejected. Moderators shall not held
   responsible for articles they approve which may lead to legal
   charges in the long run.

8) Although discussions on sex and race-related issues are on-topic
   on soc.culture.african.moderated, the moderators will strongly
   discourage the use of this forum for the propagation of national,
   religious, racist, sexual, or ethnic hostility or animosity --
   including posts openly justifying violence (in particular, violence
   against disabled people, women, and children), war crimes, or
   ethnic cleansing.

9) Large binary files, even if they are related to Africa. By large
   is meant any binary file greater than the normal PGP signatures.
   African-related binary files should be posted to the appropriate
   alt.binaries.* group with a pointer in soc.culture.african.moderated
   indicating where the binary in question may be found.

Moderators shall not screen postings for grammar, spelling, syntax,
or for intellectual content and accuracy beyond that contained in
this charter or its amendment thereof.

Moderators will not alter any message, with the possible exception
that long 'tag lines' may be eliminated to avoid problems with news
programs.

Moderation Panel
----------------
Anyone may volunteer to join the moderation panel with the consent
of a two-thirds supermajority of the current moderators. Moderators
shall not be required to belong to any specific group, be it national
/ethnic/cultural/... Moderators also may be removed by a 2/3 majority
of the active members of the moderation panel. Of course, moderators
may resign of their own volition. If a moderator wants to resign or
retire, he/she is encouraged to inform other moderators or make a
public statement at least 10 days prior to resignation or retirement,
so that a replacement may be found.

Moderators shall renew their membership every 24 months or as may
be later decided by the readers of soc.culture.african.moderated.

Enforcement of the charter with respect to a rejoinder
------------------------------------------------------
 * Rejoinders with over quoted materials shall be returned. Please,
   read the rules about incoporating quoted materials into your
   rejoinders. Furthermore, as documented in news.announce.newusers,
   you should read the group for a while before posting to it for the
   first time.
 * Rejoinders which do not satisfy the charter of the newsgroup,
   even if the original post did, shall be rejected and returned to
   the author.

Moderators also reserve the right to terminate any thread which
degenerates into unacceptable namecalling, rudeness, vulgarity, or which
they feel has reached its end or flash point. Such threads shall be
terminated by a simple majority of the current moderators. The intention
to terminate a thread should be announced by the moderators in a posting
to the group.

More on Rejection of Articles
-----------------------------

* Rejected messages will always be returned to the sender with an
  explanation from the moderator.

* Articles which are rejected by a majority decision of the moderators
  shall be returned to their author(s) by the moderator who was on duty
  when the articles were submitted.

* Articles which are cancelled by the moderators may also be returned to
  their authors.

However, the moderators shall not have to return the following articles:

   * articles from anonymous posters. if you want to post anonymously,
     contact the moderators first, to explain why you are posting so.
   * articles crossposted to inappropriate newsgroups
   * a mail-bomb sent to moderators as a submission to the newsgroup
   * crossposted "spam" article which the author clearly knew was
     off-topic when he/she submitted it.
   * articles from forged addresses.

The moderators shall periodically post an informational article to
the newsgroup containing this charter.

Grievance Procedure
-------------------
Individuals who believe a particular moderator has unfairly rejected
a submission can appeal to the entire panel of moderators. The panel
will re-evaluate the submission and make a majority decision as to
whether it will be posted. In the event that the moderation panel is
evenly split over whether a submission ought to be posted, the
submission shall be posted.

Robomoderation
--------------
At any time, the moderators may develop a robomoderation script to
assist in their duties. The codes of the robomoderator program shall
be consistent with charter of the group and approved by a simple
majority decision of the current moderators.

Languages and Character Sets
----------------------------
Postings in any of Africa's native languages, as well as Pidgin, Swahili,
English, French, and Portuguese shall be accepted. Postings in languages
other than these are welcome provided that the English and/or French
translations of the articles are supplied. Africans are encouraged to
provide, where necessary, English or French translations to articles
written in vernacular in order to improve readership.

Articles should be sent in the standard 7 bit ASCII character set,
conform to RFC822. If accented characters are necessary one is allowed
to use the standard 8 bit ISO-8859-1 character set. Other language or
machine-specific character sets are not acceptable in this newsgroup.

END CHARTER.

CHARTER: soc.culture.african.horn

Soc.culture.african.horn is an unmoderated newsgroup for all discuss-
ions, debates, and information pertinent to the Horn of Africa. Post-
ings can cover any topic of choice provided it has something to do
with  the Horn of Africa. This means all social, cultural, political,
musical, historical, geographical, scientific, marital, health,
technical, legal, and other topics that are, in one way or another,
related to the Horn of Africa. Postings can also include news,
opinions, observations, humor, announcements, or requests. If it has
anything to do with the Horn of Africa, it can be discussed. To
encourage wider readership and participation, mailing lists belonging
to any member nation of Horn of Africa can be gated to
soc.culture.african.horn. Intention to gate any mailing list should
first be posted to the newsgroup not less than 2 weeks before it
is effected.

Rules
-----
Soc.culture.african.horn shall be an unmoderated newsgroup. Never-
thless, all articles posted must have something to do with the Horn
of Africa or the peoples living therein. Insults, flames or unnecessary
criticisms of a group or a person will be discouraged by the readers.
Anyone will be able to post to this newsgroup. However, being free to
post should be considered a privilege and not a right. Hence, spams,
junk, hate, sexist, racist, and massively cross-posted articles/ads
which have nothing to do with the Horn of Africa will be discouraged by
the readers. Most importantly, everyone is responsible for what one
posts. Please, read the netiquette rules in news.announce.newusers
before posting your first article to this newsgroup, and endeavor to
stick to them whenever posting articles.

Language: Postings in english and other indigeneous languages of
          Horn of Africa are welcome.

END CHARTER.

CHARTER: soc.culture.african.arts

Soc.culture.african.arts is an unmoderated newsgroup to discuss all
aspects of African arts. The topics involved are varied but we
believe that the following topics and other related issues will serve
the group well.

Topics:
-------
The influence of African art on global culture can be discussed.
Were the Corinthians influenced by the Egyptians? Is Egyptian art
African? What influences occurred accross the Sahara? How did African
art influence 18th century Europe (and later) as more and more of it
came to light?

Further issues that can be discussed include but not limited to these:

What role did African art play in the indigenous cultures? What
effect did systematic extraction and destruction of the art have on
the communities? What role does African art play in the current lives
of Africans? How does reproductive art play a role in today's African
art? Are there still traditional practices that include traditional
art forms? What evolution has African art undergone in the last three
centuries? What parallels exist between African art and European and
Eastern art? How do these fit into the development of the respective
societies?

What do people think of the commercialization of traditional African
art? What constitutes a "real" piece of African art over a "fake".
What becomes of private western collections of African art that are
ferreted away from public view? Do these collectors have a responsi-
bility to share these works with the art community? How should one
go about starting an Afrcan art collection? How does commoditization
of African art affect the people? How is the collection, production
and distribution of art in modern Africa practiced. How do people
feel about their art inheritance?

What art is being surreptitiously removed from Africa? How are
African communities coping with the removal of their cultural
heritage? How are western nations positioned as far as cultural
desecration is concerned? What areas are of particular concern?

Where are the latest archeological digs occurring? What are they
yielding? What new cultures (such as the Nok) are being unearthed?
What new discoveries of art are taking place? Who are experts in
the African art field? How can one find out information regarding
a particular piece of art or culture? What institutions offer good
programmes on African art? Books? Sources on the internet? How have
imported religions affected the influence of African art on the
local ethnic groups? Has Islam or Christianity (no graven images)
helped reduce the application of art as religious or cultural icons?

Discussions on photography, video and film, film and art festivals,
fashionand fabric design, culinary arts (food, cooking etc), and
art education are on-topic. Conference announcements related to
African arts and requests about African arts are also welcome.

Rules:
-----
Although this newsgroup is unmoderated, we urge posters to show
some civility in their discussions. Readers of this group will
strongly discourage irrelevant posts such as spams, ads, make-
money-quick, all manner of junk mails, racist and sexist mails,
and such other posts that are unhealthy to the purposes of the
newsgroup.

Language: English, but articles in French and Portugese are
welcome. Posters in French and Portugese are encouraged, where
possible, to provide translations of their articles in English.

END CHARTER.

CHARTER: soc.culture.african.west-africa

Soc.culture.african.west-africa is an unmoderated newsgroup for all
discussions, debates, and information pertinent to the ECOWAS subregion
of Africa. Postings can cover any topic of choice provided it has
something to do with the West-African (ECOWAS) states.

Topics include but not limited to:

 Education system(s) - post-secondary education, WAEC, 6-3-3
                       education program, etc.
 Economy - The ECOWAS Fund, role of IMF and other financial instit-
           utions, the effect of continued military rule in the ECOWAS
           subregion.
 Music
 Regional cooperation, civil wars, ECOWAS monetary issues, immigration
 Religion
 Science, technology, and Transportation
 Health and social issues
 Language issues, the use and development of Pidgin english,....
 Customs, marriages, and other topics which are, in one way or another,
 related to the ECOWAS subregion of Africa.

Postings can also include news, opinions, observations, humor, announc-
ements, or requests. If it has anything to do with the ECOWAS, it can
be discussed.

Rules
-----
Soc.culture.african.west-africa shall be an unmoderated newsgroup.
Neverthless, all articles posted must have something to do with the
ECOWAS subregion of Africa or the peoples living therein. Insults,
flames or unnecessary criticisms of a group or a person will be disc-
ouraged by the readers. Anyone will be able to post to this newsgroup.
However, being free to post should be considered a privilege and not
a right. Hence, spams, junk, hate, sexist, racist, and massively
cross-posted articles/ads which have nothing to do with the ECOWAS
subregion of Africa will be strongly discouraged. Most importantly,
everyone is responsible for what one posts. Please, read the netiquette
rules in news.announce.newusers before posting your first article to
this newsgroup, and endeavor to stick to them whenever posting articles.
To encourage wider readership and participation, mailing lists belonging
to any member of the ECOWAS can be gated the newsgroup provided not
less than 2 weeks notice is posted on the newsgroup.

Language: Postings in english, french, portugese, pidgin, and other
          indigeneous languages of the ECOWAS subregion of Africa
          are welcome. For wider readership, please provide the
          english translation where possible.

END CHARTER.

CHARTER: talk.politics.african

Talk.politics.african is an unmoderated newsgroup for discussing
current sociopolitical issues concerning Africa, Africans, and
Africans in diaspora.

END CHARTER.

MODERATOR INFO: soc.culture.african.moderated

Moderator: Susan Almy <[email protected]>
  Susan is a new state legislator in the USA after 25 years of
  agricultural development work in and about many parts of Africa
  and the African part of Brazil. She is strongly concerned with
  better access by Africans to the Internet.

Moderator: Anton Dil <[email protected]>
  Anton lectures in computer science in Coventry, England. He grew
  up in Zanbia, and has travelled widely on the continent. He is
  interested in development work and education in Africa, and in
  helping to provide a good forum for all people to discuss topics
  related to Africa in a civil and constructive atmosphere on the
  Internet.

Moderator: Prema Qadir <[email protected]>.
Moderator: Rodney Coates <[email protected]>
Moderator: Wayne De Jager <[email protected]>
Moderator: Stephen Kennedy <[email protected]>
Moderator: Solomon Makobili <[email protected]>
Moderator: Boubacar Bah <[email protected]>

END MODERATOR INFO.

PROCEDURE:

This is a request for discussion, not a call for votes.  In this phase
of the process, any potential problems with the proposed newsgroup
should be raised and resolved.  The discussion period will continue
for a minimum of 21 days (starting from when the first RFD for this
proposal is posted to news.announce.newgroups), after which a Call For
Votes (CFV) will be posted by a neutral vote taker.  Please do not
attempt to vote until this happens.

All discussion of this proposal should be posted to news.groups.

This RFD attempts to comply fully with the Usenet newsgroup creation
guidelines outlined in "How to Create a New Usenet Newsgroup" and "How
to Format and Submit a New Group Proposal".  Please refer to these
documents (available in news.announce.newgroups) if you have any
questions about the process.

DISTRIBUTION:

This RFD has been posted to the following newsgroups:

       news.announce.newgroups,
       news.groups,
       soc.culture.african
       bit.tech.africana
       soc.culture.kenya
       soc.culture.zimbabwe
       soc.culture.south-africa
       soc.culture.nigeria
       soc.culture.liberia
       soc.culture.sierra-leone

and the following mailing lists:

 Naijanet <[email protected]> (Nigerian Main Mailing List)
          Subscribe via: [email protected]
          Subscription Command: subscribe naijanet user-name

 Zambia Network <[email protected]>

 Cameroon Network <[email protected]>
          subscribe via: [email protected]
          subscription command: subscribe camnet user-name

 This RFD will be posted by the mentor/proponents in:

       soc.culture.south-africa.afrikaans
       soc.culture.somalia
       soc.culture.malagasy
       soc.culture.caribbean
       soc.culture.berber
       soc.culture.egypt
       soc.culture.maghreb
       soc.culture.african.american
       soc.culture.brazil
       soc.culture.algeria
       soc.culture.ethiopia.moderated
       soc.history.african.biafra
       soc.culture.guinea-conakry

PROPONENTS:

Proponent: Prema Qadir <[email protected]>
Proponent: Stephen Kennedy <[email protected]>
Proponent: Boubacar Bah <[email protected]>
Proponent: Anton Dil <[email protected]>
Proponent: Susan Almy <[email protected]>

MENTOR: Oguocha Ike <[email protected]>
 
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