Frequently Asked Questions
What is a mailing list?
It's really quite simple; think of it as a discussion group where people
who share a common interest meet and talk. It all happens through the magic
of email. Everyone who subscribes to the same mailing list receives
copies (in their normal email inbox) of anything a person sends to the
mailing list. So a person can sit by and watch the discussion, add their
own thoughts or bring up new topics and questions just by sending an email
to the list. It operates with your normal mail software and will increase
the amount of mail you receive- if you're concerned about getting too much
email, there is a digest edition that condenses blocks of messages
into one big email that gets sent out at least once a day.
How much mail can I expect in a day?
On the most active list AT-L, we rarely exceed 50 messages per
day, and probably average around 20.
Do I pay for this?
No. It's free. No commercials. No dot-com IPO.
How can I subscribe?
Go to http://www.backcountry.net
and click on the subscribe button for the list your are interested in.
The home page for the list will come up, and just follow the instructions
under the heading "Subscribing to..". Please introduce yourself
to the list after subscribing.
How do I post to the list?
Simply email a message to LISTNAME-L@backcountry.net and it goes to
all the subscribers. Simply replying to a previous list message is not
enough (that only goes to the original poster), you must include the LISTNAME-L@backcountry.net,
in your To: or CC: list if you want your message to go back out to everyone.
If you're subscribed to a digest version of one of the lists, you can also
email LISTNAME-L-DIGEST@backcountry.net, and it will get out to the list
just the same.
What's the difference between the digested version of the list
and the regular version?
The regular version of the list sends out individual messages every
time a person posts to the list. The digested version sends messages grouped
together, designed to keep your mailbox uncluttered.
How do I subscribe to a digested version of a list?
You can either choose the digest option when you first subscribe,
or you can switch to the digest version (or back to the normal version)
just by visiting the list info link at the bottom of all the list emails.
See the last heading on the listinfo page: "... Subsribers".
Just enter your email address there and press Edit Options.
A new page will come up with tons of options that control how you interact
with the list. The digest option is the second one in the grey
Can see see and/or search messages previously posted to the list?
Currently searching is broken. This is a result of the
migration away from majordomo to mailman, but the good news is that the
archives are now updated in real-time, available as links off of the main
How do I unsubscribe?
Easy. Just click on the link at the bottom of any one of the
list emails, and select Set Options and the bottom of the page.
The very first option at the top of the page is marked "Unsubscribe".
I tried that, but your dumb computer said I'm not subscribed!
That likely means that you subscribed from a different email address.
Try a different/older address you may have used previously.
If all else fails, email the administration for your list (see the main
backcountry.net page), and s/he can remove you manually.
I can't tell if it's AT-L or AT-1(one), PCT-L or PCT-1 (one), etc.?
Which is it?
It is LISTNAME-L, not LISTNAME-1 (one). That's one of the most common
problems people have.
I can't post! I get a message saying that my post is being held for
This happens when you're attempting to post from an address (even slightly)
different that you subscribed with. My computer holds these as non-member
posts, to prevent spam from hitting the people on the list. The good news
is that I can add your other address to an exception list, just drop me
an email from your other address
with a request.
What's the deal with two AT lists... one here and one at Wingfoot's
I'm afraid you'll have to ask Dan
Bruce / Wingfoot that question. I had been running the AT-L for
a number years when the ATML came along. not sure why there's a need for
a duplication of effort. I'm very hands-off as it relates to the subject
matter and personal opinions, and Dan tends to be hands on.
I'm not selling anything.
What trails are represented on here?
The AT, CDT, IAT, NCT, FT and PCT all have lists here. I'm always open
to new lists, but I'd like to have someone volunteer to run them.
Less important not-so-frequently-asked-questions follow...
Where do these lists come from and how do they work?
It's just me, a Unix
operating system called FreeBSD, a
mail list manager called Mailman
and a equipment rack at my home here in Wisconsin.
Here's a picture of the actual
server, it also takes a few domain name servers, a backup server,
a secondary mail server and a router/csu, ups, a T1 circuit and a lot of
Sprecher Root Beer to
Who is backcountry.net?
Well, backcountry.net is just my personal domain name I obtained for
the mailing lists. It's catchy and fun - think of it as a vanity plate
on the info superhighway. Backcountry.net replaced an older server called
saffron.hack.net in early 1998.
Do you exist?