CFV: rec.gardens.ecosystems moderated (fwd)

Larry London london at
Mon Jun 9 23:09:55 EDT 1997

------- start of forwarded message -------
From: Dave Cornejo <dave at>
Reply-To: rge at
Newsgroups: news.announce.newgroups,news.groups,alt.sustainable.agriculture,
Subject: CFV: rec.gardens.ecosystems moderated
Followup-To: poster
Organization: Usenet Volunteer Votetakers
Approved: newgroups-request at
Expires: 1 Jul 1997 00:00:00 GMT
Archive-Name: rec.gardens.ecosystems
Date: Mon, 09 Jun 1997 23:17:40 GMT

                     FIRST CALL FOR VOTES (of 2)
                moderated group rec.gardens.ecosystems

Newsgroups line:
rec.gardens.ecosystems	Ecosystems and organic gardening. (Moderated)

Votes must be received by 23:59:59 UTC, 30 Jun 1997.

This vote is being conducted by a neutral third party.  Questions
about the proposed group should be directed to the proponent.

Proponent: Bill Robinson <roseguy at>
Proponent: Ronald Zwaagstra <R.Zwaagstra at>
Votetaker: Dave Cornejo <dave at>

RATIONALE: rec.gardens.ecosystems

Organic Gardening, the magazine, conducted a survey in 1995 showing that the
number of home gardeners just in the U.S. had grown to a total of 78
million. A little over one third of those home gardenrs used mostly organic
gardening techniques, a little over one third used mostly non-organic
techniques, and the remaining one third used mostly a combination of organic
and non-organic techniques. The trend is towards increased participation in
organic gardening especially with starting home gardeners. There is no
existing newsgroup clearly focused on organic gardening or organic

Successful organic gardening is more demanding than non-organic gardening
because it requires a working knowledge of the ways the total natural
community inter-relates with the physical and chemical enviroment of the
home garden. Rec.gardens.ecosystems is being proposed as a newsgroup with an
extensive FAQ dealing with the many issues of organic gardening and the ways
these issues inter-relate with the ecosystems of the garden and the larger

The resources are in place for: 1.) Rec.gardens.ecosystems to have its own
website; 2.) to have the on-topic articles archived and made available
through WWW; and 3.) to have the group FAQ available via WWW and FTP.

Rec.gardens.ecosystems would also employ a robot moderator backed by human
moderators to minimize problems with cross-posting and to help keep the
discussions focused. The proposed newsgroup has the potential to be an
important resource for many home gardeners.

CHARTER: rec.gardens.ecosystems

Reasonable expectations in terms of scope and content:

Rec.gardens.ecosystems is intended as a newsgroup for the discussion
of the ways nature works within the garden. Successful organic
gardening is more demanding than non-organic gardening because it
requires a working knowledge of the ways the total natural community
interrelates with the physical and chemical environment of the home
garden. This is the basic meaning of the term, ecosystems. The reason
for selecting the name, "rec.gardens.ecosystems" was to emphasize that
the focus of this newsgroup is on gardening in cooperation with
nature. Michael Pollan said, "... the garden is a middle ground
between nature and culture." That middle ground should be a place
friendly to both sides.

Organic gardening can be defined as gardening with environmentally
friendly materials and environmentally friendly cultural practices.
Those materials considered as "environmentally friendly" are, for the
most part, those materials approved for use and listed in the
International Certification Standards of the Organic Crop Improvement
Association. A copy of that Standard will be included as Appendix A in
the group FAQ. Those practices that are considered as "environmentally
friendly" are those practices traditionally associated with organic
gardening and/or Integrated Pest Management.

Rec.gardens.ecosystems is also proposed as a newsgroup with a
Frequently Asked Questions or FAQ component. The FAQ will attempt to
answer the bulk of the questions asked by home gardeners employing
organic gardening techniques. Because the ecosystem of one area is
often so different from the ecosystem of another and because organic
answers tend to be so regional, the content of the FAQ will be based
on discussions in the group and on the existing knowledge and
experience of volunteers who help maintain the FAQ.

The basic content will be as follows:


     Section A: Basic Orientation & Definition of Terms
     Section B: Soils: Structure, use of Soil Amendments & Mulches
     Section C: Composting & Use of Compost
     Section D: Plant Nutrition
     Section E: Cultural Practices
     Section F: Botany for the Home Gardener
     Section G: Plant & Soil Disease; Treatment & Prevention
     Section H: Plant & Soil Pests; Treatment & Prevention
     Section I: Gardening for Wildlife
     Section J: Growing Edible Crops/Growing Organic Foods & Products
     Section K: Vegetarian & Vegan Gardening

     Appendix A: OCIA's International Certification Standard
     Appendix B: Recommended Reading
     Appendix C: Related Newsgroups, Websites, & Off-line Addresses
     Appendix D: Moderation Policy
     Appendix E: Glossary of Botanical Terms

An updated copy of the FAQ will be posted in rec.gardens.ecosystems
every two weeks. The FAQ Maintainers may decide to change the
posting frequency if and when the FAQ becomes available by other
means such as FTP, WWW or Automated E-mail.

Maintainer: Bill Robinson <roseguy at>
Maintainer: Ronald Zwaagstra <R.Zwaagstra at ppsw.rug>

Note:The FAQ maintainers will make a concerted effort to keep the
content of the FAQ current, relevant, and accurate. The information in
the FAQ can be used freely but at one's own risk. The FAQ maintainers
can not be held responsible for any damage caused by the information
in the FAQ.

Reasonable expectations of rec.gardens.ecosystems as a whole:

Gardening with just environmentally friendly materials coupled with
just environmentally friendly cultural practices and getting good
results requires a working knowledge of the ecosystems operating in
that particular garden. For the most part, it is a more complicated
way to garden. The reader should expect some of the discussions to be
relatively technical.

Moderation Policy:

The moderation policies for rec.gardens.ecosystems have a number of
goals. One goal is to eliminate or reduce cross postings. The only
crossposted articles allowed are administrative postings like RFDs
and CFVs. A second goal is to help the discussions stay focused on
ecosystems and organic gardening. A third goal is to discourage
inappropriate postings. The moderation system consists of a robo-
moderator supported by human moderators. The planed moderation
program is expected to meet these goals.

The robomoderator is intended as the primary "moderator at work". It
has the ability and is given the authority to perform three functions
during periods in which it is the primary moderator: 1.) To reject cross
posted articles or articles containing binaries, (PGP signatures O.K).
2.) To check whether the poster has engaged in off-topic postings (such
as, but not restricted to, ‘flames' or non-authorized commercial
postings) and attempts to continue such postings even after an
explicit request by the moderating team has been sent that such
practice cease. In the event that both conditions are met, the article
is referred to the human moderators for consideration. 3.) To approve
and post all other articles independent of the human moderators.

Except for forged messages, the moderators will not cancel any
messages. The human moderators may update the robomoderator
so as to reduce the number of off-topic postings. It should be noted
that as the robomoderator is usally the only moderator at work, some
amount of off-topic (see below) posts should be expected.

The responsibilities of the human moderators are to maintain the
robomoderator and to handle those situations that require individual
attention. When the human moderators see a need to shift moderation
to their control, they will first post an advanced notice on
rec.gardens.ecosystems stating the intent to shift to human moderation
(assisted by the robomoderator) and state the reasons for doing so.
The human moderators take over for an unspecified length of time
and will be assisted by the robomoderator checking for cross-posts,
binaries, and approved posters. The human moderators may elect to give
auto-approval status to any number of posters during those periods of
human moderation. All human moderators have the right to accept or
reject articles for rec.gardens.ecosystems.

The reasoning behind the temporary shifting to human moderation is to
provide the human moderators with the means to deal with difficult
situations, these include but are not restricted to flamewars and a
high percentage of off-topic postings. Articles that are blatantly
commercial and have nothing to do with home gardening or articles that
contain foul or offensive language, e.g., flames,  are considered
inappropriate for rec.gardens.ecosystems. Articles that are aimed at
demeaning individuals as a result of their age, nationality, race,
religion, gender or sexual orientation are also considered
inappropriate. In the event that such an article should appear, the
human moderator would contact the author, attach a copy of the group
charter as a reference, and request the author's cooperation. In the
event that all efforts to gain cooperation fail, the human moderator
may elect to have all future articles from that author auto-referred
to human moderators for individual consideration. The author would be
notified by the human moderator if the decision was to reject the

Articles advocating the routine application of materials prohibited by
the International Certification Standards, as specified in Appendix A
of the group FAQ, are considered inappropriate as well. The same
general procedures as described above would be followed with the
exception that if such a posting would actually appear in
rec.gardens.ecosystems, the human moderator would also post an article
stating that the application of that material in that paticular way
violates the International Certification Standard.

As technology and circumstance change, it will undoubtedly be
necessary to update the moderation policy from time to time. In which
case, the changes would be posted to rec.gardens.ecosystems. The group
FAQ will also contain the most recent version of the moderation policy
in Appendix D.

Commercial Postings:

Articles announcing or promoting commercial products, services, or
publications by commercial sources may be posted provided that they
are appropriate in an organic gardening program. The articles must be
approved by the moderator prior to posting. Commercial postings
without pre-post approval will be considered as inappropriate and
treated as above.

Replacement of moderators:

Moderators may be replaced in a vote organized by an independent
vote-counter using the automated UseVote software. The voting period
lasts for a  period of 20 to 30 days, stated in advance in the Call
For Votes. The Call For Votes must appear in rec.gardens.ecosystems.
Moderators are replaced when the replacement candidate obtains a 2/3
majority with a minimal difference of 100 votes. The results of the
vote are published in rec.gardens.ecosystems.

The original proponent for a moderator replacement is allowed one
article in the group calling for support. The subjectline for that
Call For Support should read:"Moderator replacement, Call For
Support". The formal replacement process requires the support of at
least ten past-posters with the number verified by the moderator
group. A formal discussion on the replacement may then begin. The
subjectline for the formal discussion should read:"Moderator
replacement, Request For Discussion". Calls For Support and Requests
For Discussion will only be accepted when at least six months have
passed since the last request for discussion of moderator replacement.

Resignation of moderators, expansion of office:

Moderators in office may resign or choose to increase their number. In
such case, they may appoint a new moderator without a formal group
vote. Anyone who would like to volunteer to become a moderator should
notify one of the moderators. The moderators may ask the group for
their opinions regarding a candidate moderator. Those who would wish
to reply should do so by sending their comments directly to the
moderators by private e-mail rather than posting in the group. The
acceptance of a new moderator is then posted in

Conflicts between moderators:

The moderator team will be supervised by a Moderator Supervisor who is
not engaged in actual moderation. If the moderators have a conflict
that they can not resolve by themselves, the Moderator Supervisor
decides the issue. The proposed moderators propose the first Moderator
Supervisor. The Moderator Supervisor may propose their successors to
the moderating team. The moderating team must agree on the selection
of the follow-up supervisor.


MODERATOR INFO: rec.gardens.ecosystems

Moderator: Bill Robinson <roseguy at>
Moderator: Ronald Zwaagstra <R.Zwaagstra at>
Administrative contact address: ecosys-admin at
Article submission address: ecosys-submit at



Follow these instructions *exactly*!  Votes are counted by computer.
You should send E-MAIL (posts to a newsgroup are invalid) to:

    rge at

Please do not assume that just replying to this message will work.
Check the address before you mail your vote.  Your mail message
should contain one and only one of the following vote statements:

    I vote YES on rec.gardens.ecosystems
    I vote NO on rec.gardens.ecosystems

    Voter name:

If your mail software does not indicate your real name (for example, AOL
does not), include _exactly_ the statement above on a _separate_ line
and add your name after the colon.  Having your name in your signature line
is NOT enough!  Do NOT join the lines together or remove the words
"Voter name"!

You may also vote ABSTAIN (which records an empty vote) or CANCEL (which
removes any earlier votes).  ABSTAIN does not affect the final vote count
in any way but is listed, whereas CANCEL is not.

If these instructions are unclear, please consult the Introduction to
Usenet Voting or the Usenet Voting FAQ at


Standard Guidelines for voting apply.  One vote per person, one account
per voter.  Votes must be mailed directly from the voter to the votetaker.
Anonymous, forwarded or proxy votes are not valid.  Votes mailed by
WWW/HTML/CGI forms are considered to be anonymous votes.

Standard Guidelines for voting apply.  One person, one vote.  Votes
must be mailed directly from the voter to the votetaker.  Anonymous,
forwarded or proxy votes are not valid.  Votes mailed by WWW/HTML/CGI
forms are considered to be anonymous votes.

Vote counting is automated.  Failure to follow these directions may
mean that your vote does not get counted.  If you do not receive an
acknowledgment of your vote within three days contact the votetaker
about the problem.  It's your responsibility to make sure your vote
is registered correctly.  Duplicate votes are resolved in favor of
the most recent valid vote.  Addresses and votes of all voters will
be published in the final voting results post.

The purpose of a Usenet vote is to determine the genuine interest of
persons who would read a proposed newsgroup.  Soliciting votes from
disinterested parties defeats this purpose.  Please do not distribute
this CFV.  If you must, direct people to the official CFV as posted
to news.announce.newgroups.  Distributing pre-marked or otherwise
edited copies of this CFV is generally considered to be vote fraud.
When in doubt, ask the votetaker.


Pointers directing readers to this CFV will be posted in these groups:

The bionet.* groups

Dave Cornejo <dave at>
------- end of forwarded message -------

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