Can and should discourse replace the NIME mailing list?

NIME’s main community hub right now is the mailing list which is presently hosted as a google group.

This presents some limitations to community members who can’t or don’t want to access google services for various reasons.

Given that discourse can be operated fully over email (i.e., email digests are already active and it can be configured for post-via-email) should we aim to replace the mailing list altogether?

I suppose in the interest of community growth we might want to consolidate where people go to get important information or make announcements.

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Yes, this is an interesting suggestion. The mailing list is a low-volume and moderated information channel, primarily focused on job ads and conference calls. A lively discussion forum is something quite different, so we just need to be sure that we don’t loose the current function of the mailing list, if we make such a move. Is there a way to get the best of both worlds?

maybe there is some way just to have notifications on the “announcements” category.

This is the way that I use team chat with my TAs and students, we have many chat channels where we don’t have notifications but then a special announce channel where we point important announcements.

Only problem is policing a “no chat in the announce!” policy :smiley:

I am less inclined to get rid of the mailing list entirely, if only because I think having an option for a uni-directional, email-only communications channel is a good option for those who would rather not sign up to/wouldn’t use a forum (for example, this forum is probably not accessible in places where there is government-controlled internet). That said I’m also not averse to moving it from Google Groups, say to a regular old-fashioned mailing list (remember those??) :slight_smile:


Fair point about regular old mailing lists!

I think we ended up doing this with the Australasian Computer Music Association mailing list… it was hosted by some university and then they dropped it, so we had a google group for a while, but some of our members are in China so that didn’t work, and now we have a mailman list on (the creatively named)

Funny detail here is that is actually based in Canberra. I wonder if they would give me a local area discount? :laughing:


Yes, we used to have it running on a university server. This works well if someone is in charge of it (in the long run). It is more challenging if someone moves to a new university and don’t have any rights on the server any longer…

Is there any reason not to keep it going for a while and perhaps eventually phase it out if membership in this forum attains the same reach?

Hey @mjl !

There’s no reason not to keep the mailing list the way it is except that it’s running on google groups, and it’s certainly stable, but I would say that all the mailing list stuff should be published to the forum (in #announcements) but not the other way round.

Are you the list admin at the moment @mjl ?

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@charlesmartin Andrew Johnston is the ml admin now. I help out as as moderator, as does Tom Mitchell. Yes I agree that publishing all ml posts in this forum is a good way to include people who are not able to join the ml. Perhaps a forum will eventually supersede the ml.


Hi everyone, I agree it would be nice to keep both running and see whether the forum replaces or adds to the ml. As others have said, I suspect the forum will encourage more questions, requests and discussion (like this), whereas the ml is principally used for broadcasting.

I have a feeling that the ml makes the NIME community accessible - it’s probably easier to add the ml email to your cc list than it is to register on a forum, find the announcements section and share relevant calls/jobs/etc.

@charlesmartin do you know if there is a way to get NIME ml announcements posted automatically to the forum?

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Yep, I think you basically make a special email address that posts into a category and subscribe that address to the list:


I am also a fan of the mailing list. But I could see the forum replacing it if there was a recreate the low volume announcement type mailing and not here’s-everything-everyone-said-on-the-forum type mailings.

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