Listservs and the list

Below you will find answers to the following questions:-

What is a mailing list?

The Flyfish list is a worldwide discussion group with flyfishing as the topic. It is called a list because it is simply a mailing list. The messages that form the discussion are sent as electronic mail (email) to everyone on the mailing list. If you subscribe to Flyfish, your name and computer address will simply be added to the mailing list and you will automatically receive electronic mail messages about flyfishing.

How do I subscribe?

To subscribe to the Flyfish list, send an e-mail message to: The text of the e-mail message should be:
subscribe flyfish John Smith
(Substitute your name instead of John Smith)
It is not necessary to specify a subject for this message. Be sure to send this message to and NOT to which is used only for posting messages to everyone on the list. The listserv address is used for administrative messages such as subscriptions and is handled automatically by a computer program which controls the list.

How do I get removed from the list?

Once subscribed to the list, you may at some point wish to remove yourself from the list. To do this, send an email message to:
The text of the message should be:
unsubscribe flyfish
It is not necessary to specify a subject for this message. Again, please remember to send this message to and NOT to

How do I temporarily stop mail from the list?

Send a message to, the body of the message should be one line,
set flyfish nomail

How do I restart mail from the list?

Send a message to, the body of the message should be one line,
set flyfish mail

How do I post messages?

To post a message (to everyone on the list), simply send the message to:
Any message mailed to this address will automatically be sent by the listserv program to everyone currently on the mailing list. It helps to specify a brief, descriptive subject so that the people on the list can read (or delete) their mail efficiently. It also helps to end your message with your name and email address, so that readers may respond to you directly when desired.

How do I reply to a message?

To reply to a message, you must first decide whether you want to reply only to the person that posted the message or to everyone on the list. If you want to reply only to the one person, then do not use the "reply" function in your mail program. That will usually send your reply back to which will, of course, result in it being sent to everyone on the list. Instead, send your reply to his or her email address. This can usually be obtained by examining the message to which you are responding. Look for a signature at the end of the message or look for a line in the message header beginning with "From: ". Unfortunately, it is possible that your mail program will remove such non-essential lines from the message header. Signing your messages with your email address will assist others with this same problem.
If you want your reply sent to everyone on the list, then send your reply to:
As with any message sent to this address, it will be distributed to everyone on the list. It is helpful to specify the same subject, preceeded by "Re:". Most mail programs have a reply function which simplifies the process of replying to a message. If you reply to a posted message using your reply function, your reply will be sent back to which is perfect if you want your reply distributed to everyone on the list. This is how most people reply to messages because there is no need to type in the list address or the subject. This may not work for everyone; in rare cases an overeducated mail program will ferret out the original sender from the header and reply to that person rather than the list, so you may have to do things the old fashioned way.

Why don't I receive the messages that I post?

If you post a message to Flyfish, it is sent to everyone on the list except you, the sender. If you want to receive your own messages send a message to:
with the following line of text:
set flyfish repro
Most people prefer to see their own messages sent back to them, if only as confirmation that the message actually was sent out without any difficulties.

I get too much mail from the list. What can I do?

You can get the mail from the list sent to you in digest form. You will then get one message per day (usually) which contains all of the messages of the day. Just send the message:
set flyfish digests
If this is still too much for you, you may wish to signoff the list. Save these instructions in case this happens to you.

I'm receiving no FF@ mail, What's happened?

This can happen for a number of reasons, sometimes problems with the listserver, but more likely because you have been removed from the list. This will happen if your e-mail address has changed, or you have been having problems with your e-mail. When this occurs, every FF@ message sent to you will bounce back to the list. The software will automatically delete subscribers with certain errors, and the list owner may be forced to remove others with persistent problems.

The procdure to find out if you are still subscribed is simple. Send a message to:
with the following line of text:
review flyfish
This will result in a file of all FF@ subscribers being sent to you. If you are not on this list, then you should re-subscribe. If you are, then don't worry, things are just quiet.

Sometimes people check by sending a message to the list asking if anyone else is getting messages. If you see this, and you have been getting lots of FF messages as usual, e-mail back DIRECTLY to the enquirer, not to the list. They have probably been dropped from the list, and thus will not get your helpful response, although everyone else will.

Are old messages archived?

Yes, the old messages are archived. To get a list of archived files send a message to:
containing the text:
index flyfish
There is also a web site with powerful search capability maintained by Joel Dunn, which allows keyword searching of the archives back to 1990.

How do I get an archived file?

To get an archived file, send a message to: containing the text:
get flyfish filename
(Substitute the name of the file you want to get for filename)

Can I get a list of listserv commands?

A short list of listserv commands will be sent to you if you send the message:
For more information, check the LISTSERV Users guide.

How do I get Net Access?

If you are reading this, you are already on the Net, but if you wish to find an alternative provider, or help a friend get on the net, check The List.

How can I help someone get on the list?

The list receives messages from non-subscribers. Often we see messages asking for information on how to subscribe. To help these people, do not simply reply to them, make sure that your message goes to their specific e-mail. Why? Because they are not subscribed to the list, and will not get any reply sent to the list (although 1000+ listmembers will).

I'm confused. Where can I get help?

If you have difficulties subscribing, resigning, or posting to the Flyfish list, please direct your questions to the listowner and not to the list. There is no need to clutter the mailboxes of subscribers with such questions. The listowner will be happy to help you. The listowner is Danny Walls (E-mail:- AGRDANNY@POP.UKY.EDU)