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Subject: [FAQ] Creating and removing newsgroups in the Big-8 Hierarchies
This article was archived around: Wed, 15 Apr 2009 00:03:03 -0700
Posting-Frequency: twice monthly
(This is an official communication from the Big-8 Management Board.)
I. The Big-8 Hierarchies
The Big-8 is a set of popular managed Usenet hierarchies, dating back to
1986. There are approximately 2,300 newsgroups in these eight hierarchies:
comp.* Computer topics, both hardware and software.
news.* Administration of the Big 8; Usenet; Netnews; etc.
sci.* Science and technology.
humanities.* The humanities.
rec.* Recreation: music, sports, games, outdoor, hobbies, crafts, etc.
soc.* Socializing, society, and social issues.
talk.* Endless discussion, largely about politics.
misc.* Miscellany, often about the practical aspects of everyday life.
A complete list of Big-8 newsgroups is available at:
These are distinct from the "alt.*" hierarchy (including alt.binaries.*),
which is unmanaged and contains many thousands of newsgroups. There are
many other hierarchies as well, as documented at:
The Big-8 is managed by the Big-8 Management Board; for more information
on the board, please see:
II. Creating a New Big-8 Newsgroup
A basic outline for creation of a newsgroup is as follows:
1. (optional) The proponent may start an informal discussion in
news.groups and/or in related groups about the proposed group.
2. The proponent submits a formal Request For Discussion (RFD) to
3. After the RFD is published in news.announce.newgroups, official
discussion of the proposal takes place in news.groups.proposals.
4. When the discussion is complete, the proponent asks the board to
vote on the proposal by filing a final RFD as a Last Call for
5. The board decides the question by consensus or by voting on
the proposal. This may take from five to twelve days after the
final RFD is published in news.announce.newgroups.
6. If the proposal passes, it is implemented.
For a more complete description of these procedures, see:
For a much more detailed creation FAQ, see:
III. Removing a Big-8 Newsgroup, and Other Changes
The outline for removing a newsgroup is similar to that for creating a
newsgroup, and is as follows:
1. A proponent submits a Group Removal RFD to news.announce.newsgroups.
2. The Board decides whether to publish the Group Removal RFD.
3. Discussion of the RFD takes place in news.groups.proposals.
4. The RFD is revised as needed.
5. When the proponent and the board agree that no further revisions or
research are required, the board schedules a vote on the RFD.
6. If the proposal to remove the group is endorsed by the board, the
Technical Team will implement the decision.
For a more complete description of this procedure, see:
The procedure for a Moderator Vacancy Investigation (MVI), whereby
moderators can be found for unmaintained moderated newsgroups, is
IV. Additional Management Information
For a complete list of FAQs describing the current management of the
If you have questions about these procedures, please feel free to either
respond to this post in news.groups, contact the Board directory, or
contact the Group Mentors, which is chartered to help people understand
and use the newsgroup creation procedures:
A current queue of outstanding proposals is available at:
The canonical source of documentation regarding the Big-8 management
system is the Big-8 Usenet Wiki, available at:
If you would like to help support the Big-8 hierarchies, please consider
volunteering for one of our committees:
Usenet Volunteer Pollsters
Mailing List http://lists.big-8.org/mailman/listinfo/uvp/
Usenet Volunteer Moderators
Mailing List http://lists.big-8.org/mailman/listinfo/uvm/
Mailing List http://lists.big-8.org/mailman/listinfo/group-mentors/
Deadwood Groups Task Force
Mailing List http://lists.big-8.org/mailman/listinfo/deadwood/
http://www.big-8.org/ Big-8 Management Board