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The MidEast Web dialog list is an e-mail discussion list run from an automatic listserv. You can join it for dialog, and comments about Middle East-related subjects. Please read the guidelines below and make sure you agree to all of them. This is a private list, and members must obey privacy rules to protect other members and follow the guidelines. This list is not for anonymous "lurkers."
Introductory Letter - To join the list, send us a brief introductory letter, telling us your first and last name, where you live (what country and city) and your interest in Middle East peace. This letter to the moderators should not take sides or express specific political views about the conflict, but you need to tell us if you engage in any activities related to the Middle East or are active in any Middle East political groups. Likewise you need to tell us
- That you have read the guidelines on this page and accept them;
- That you will abide by decisions of the moderators;
- That you will be respectful to all religions, nationalities and ethnic groups and with neighborliness to group members;
- That you will respect the privacy of group members.
The introduction protects you and other group members, and it also helps us to know each other. We hope you will also contribute to the list from time to time. At the same time as you send us the letter, you need to send a separate letter to the automatic list server, so that your application can be processed.
Introduction to members - After you have joined the list, please send an introduction to the list, telling members your full name, where you live and what your interest in and relation to the Middle East is. If you belong to a political group you should note that.
The MidEast Web dialog list is a closed list. Only members can view posts. Before joining, you can get an idea of what we do from this sample message thread.
Subscriptions - Postings to MidEastWebDialog must follow the MEW Guidelines as well as guidelines on this page and mideastwebdialog moderation decisions. If you have read this page and agree to abide by the guidelines, please:
send a brief introductory letter to:
If you do not send an introductory letter, you will be asked to do so before your application is approved.
MidEastWebDialog members treat each other with respect and help advance the work of MidEastWeb, which is promoting coexistence and peace education as well as better understanding of the Middle East conflict. Members are expected to be committed to peace and respect between nations and peoples, but do not need to adhere to any particular political position or embrace pacifism or any other ideology or religious or ethical concept. These guidelines are instituted for your protection and to ensure that we have fruitful and pleasant discussions.
Moderation of posts - Posts of MidEastWebDialog members are moderated. Members have the responsibility of being polite to others and respectful of their religious and political beliefs, national and ethnic ties and privacy. The moderators reserve the right to bar any person from this list who does not conform to guidelines, refuses to agree to requests of the moderators or who has hurt other members. Guidelines are not not absolute rules, but moderators have the right to enforce them and reject posts that violate any of the guidelines or common sense - and also to bend the rules where flexibility is in order. However, there will be no tolerance for racism, and persons who knowingly violate the privacy of the list will be removed from the list.
Posting Etiquette - Please observe the following:
Replying to posts - If you are replying to a previous post, especially if you are referring to something someone else wrote, always leave that previous post in the reply or at least copy in the relevant text, making it clear that it is a quote, and be sure the other person really wrote what you think they wrote.
Mark authors - Please separate out posts or points made by different people and mark them in some way so your readers can tell who wrote what.
No long threads - Please do not send posts with dozens of previous messages in them since that fills our mailboxes for no reason.
No one liners - Please do not reply to a post (especially a long one!) just to say "I think so too" or "thank you."
Sign your posts - Please remember to give your real name in posts. We do not ordinarily accept anonymous members. We can make exceptions for those who may be in danger if their names are revealed.
Additional guidelines regarding post netiquette are given below. The above are the more common problems.
Allowed postings - Examples of posts that interest us: (see also sample message thread. )
Comments about the situation, cultural events, Middle East History and anything else related to
the Middle East: recipes, music, art, archeology, tourism, humor...
Questions you cannot answer easily using the Web.
Replies to questions and points of information.
Informal or brief comments about articles and letters in the ViewPoints/PeaceWatch
newsletters or elsewhere.. Articles for ViewPoints/PeaceWatch or long comments to ViewPoints/PeaceWatch can be sent to
this list, but they should also be sent to with a note saying they are
intended for circulation in ViewPoints/PeaceWatch.
Brief announcements about special dialog activities or public action on behalf of dialog and
people-to- people activities. These do not include partisan campaigns on political issues other than dialog that
may be launched by other groups - regardless of their orientation on the issues.
Accounts of dialog activities that occurred and dialog experiences.
Book reviews - Letters telling us about books you read related to the Middle East.
Links to interesting web sites, news services and discussion groups.
Letters telling us about other Web sites, news services and discussion groups. Sample news items can be included if they are not copyright. Always give the URL or mailing list source of any material if available.
Respect for others - You are joining a group of friends. View others as individuals and friends and not as "enemy" or members of opposing groups. Treat others as you would guests in your own living room.
Supporting MidEastWeb and MidEastWebDialog - You are expected to be a constructive member of MidEastWeb and to help MidEastWeb and MidEastWeb dialog grow and fulfill its function.
Points of view - In discussions, try to understand and take the part of both sides. Understanding the different points of view rather than propagandizing for your own views should be your main goal. The following very brief presentation will help to explain what we are trying to achieve: Presentation - Getting the Whole Picture
Rules - Forbidden Actions
Confrontation, ad-hominem and Racism - Confrontational posts and insults are not allowed. That is not a "guideline" - it is a rule. Do not engage in personalities, racism or use insulting or obscene language. That is a misuse of the list. Carrying on personal vendettas against list members or other private persons, on this list or on other lists is forbidden. Persons who intentionally violate these rules may be removed from the list with no warning. Avoid generalizations such as "All X are terrorists" "Why are all Y people evil?" It is forbidden to defame national or ethnic groups or individuals. For example, it is forbidden to write that X are Nazis or Fascists unless they are self-professed Nazis or Fascists. Posts that attempt to circumvent these rules and insult people or groups by implication are not acceptable. For example, do not write: "What you wrote sounds like it was written by a Nazi" or "What the X people are doing reminds me of what the Nazis did." Likewise do not send to the list racist or inflammatory materials that you have written elsewhere, or statements by others that support these views and that you clearly endorse. Moderators decide what is insulting and what is not. If you make a racist or insulting statement, you must apologize.
Propaganda and campaigns - Try to express yourself in your own terms in ways that will be acceptable to people with other viewpoints - avoid propaganda, polemics and sophistry. Do not send lots of mails with links to sites of partisan organizations, unless you want to draw attention to what they are saying and discuss dangerous or racist campaigns. Do not use this list solely for the purpose of promoting other lists. Do not use this list to promote letter-writing or other campaigns on behalf of partisan legislation or actions, other than those that MEW has agreed to support or has initiated. Mideastwebdialog is meant for dialog. Do not use this list as part of another mailing list, or solely or mostly for the purpose of sending articles and materials that you did not write. You may be removed from the list for doing so.
Privacy Violations -
MidEastWebDialog is a private list, and members must agree to keep all list
discussion in the strictest confidence:
Do not copy or excerpt or paraphrase or refer to letters from this list to any third party or other list without permission from the author, except for articles and public domain material.
Do not refer to off-list correspondence or messages from other lists on this list.
Do not disclose e-mail addresses of others.
Do not carry disagreements you may have with members of this list to other lists or third parties.
Do not collect addresses from this list for a different list and do not send any members e-mail off list if they do not want to hear from you.
Do not harass list members by sending them unsolicited posts off list.
Report violations of privacy, such as private messages posted to other lists or third parties, to the moderators; include the offending post.
Respect privacy rules of other lists; forwarding of posts from those lists to MidEastwebDialog, or citing content of other private lists without permission is generally forbidden.
Privacy Rule of Thumb - If you are in doubt about referring to off list correspondence or communications, don't do it. If moderators see "On another list..." or "in off-list correspondence" in your message, it will probably be rejected.
Honesty - Honest and openness are the basis of dialog. You are expected to tell us about your ethnic and organizational affiliations and political opinions, so that each of us is acquainted with our interlocutors. If you misrepresent yourself, try to hide your real opinions, commit plagiarism, provide deliberately bogus information to the list or deliberately propagate a hoax, your place is not with us.
Limitations on Posts - There is no rigid limit on the number of posts. As a rule, you should not be posting more than a few letters each day, and these should mostly reflect your opinions, questions or replies to others, rather than articles or items you have received from other lists - unless they are directly pertinent to a point you are making. If you have sent more than five letters today, make sure that they are all important and interesting.
Quality of Posts - You can make your point better, and give others a more rewarding experience, by taking time to write good posts rather than many posts. If an answer to a simple question can be found on the Web easily, then take the time to do the search, rather than asking the question, and be sure to bring us the results. If you were wondering about this question, it probably interests others. Please try to make reasonably certain that facts you present are correct. This will save needless discussion about hoaxes and dissemination of errors, and save you embarrassment. If someone makes an error about a matter of fact for any reason, point out the correct information in a polite way.
A list such as this can generate a lot of mail. If it is interesting and important, most people won't mind. If it is frivolous, off-topic or consists of one line replies and "thank you" notes attached to long letters, it can become very annoying and will drive people away from the list - including you!
Replying and reacting to Posts - If someone asks a question directed to you or about something that you wrote, then they probably expect a reply of course. However, it is not necessary to write one line "thank you" posts in most cases, or to support posts by writing "I think so too." We are not voting on issues in this list. We don't want people who have a minority opinion to feel isolated.
Off Topic Posts - This is a dialog list that should allow for personal glimpses, jokes and interesting news or history discussions that have nothing to do with the Middle East. However, use your judgment in pursuing these topics. Not everyone in a Middle East discussion list may be interested in vegetarianism or fuel conservation or ice-hockey.
Participation - Mideastwebdialog is not a "spectator sport." In addition to the introductory letter that is mandatory, you should participate from time to time and let us know what you think.
Problems - Please report any problems you may have with a particular post someone send to the moderators, and do not engage in personalities or recriminations in the list.
Technical considerations - This list can generate a lot of mail. Please be considerate: list members should remove the lower part of letters containing long discussion threads and must avoid HTML if possible. This will prevent filling people's mailboxes with extra bulk and with annoying graphic advertisements inserted by Yahoo! in HTML. If you are answering a post, please make it clear what post you are referring to and include text from that post.
Maintaining your address and subscription - Please use the automatic listserver commands described below in the FAQ to maintain your subscription, change addresses, turn mail on or off and unsubscribe.
Moderation Issues - Please address mail regarding moderation issues to all moderators at our private addresses. Do not bring moderation issues regarding your posts or posts of others to the list. Do not write off list to other members regarding your opinions of moderators. Moderators' decisions are final.
MidEastWeb Newsletter - Members of this list should be subscribed to the MideastWeb newsletter (Viewpoints/PeaceWatch ) and will probably want to subscribe to the MewNews News service.
FAQ about the MEW Dialog List
Note- Mailing addresses on this page are mostly not links. You need to type the address into the "To" field of a new e-mail letter. This measure protects us from SPAM and viruses.
Can I send mail from my own list?
Does MEW Dialog publish peace demonstration notices?
What is the difference between this list and PeaceWatch/Viewpoints?
What should I do about insulting or problematic mail?
How do I send mail?
How do I reply to letters?
How come mail that I sent wasn't posted?
Why have I stopped getting mail?
How do I unsubscribe?
Can I get a condensed version?
How can I hold mail while I am away?
How do I change email address?
Where can I send technical questions?
How can I view old mail?
I am a peace activist. I want to know about all demonstrations and peace activities. Is this the list for me?
There are lots of lists that announce the activities of different political organizations. Mideastwebdialog is not one of them.
I have my own e-mail list. Should I post mailings from that list to the MidEast Web dialog?
Not unless they are directly related to dialog activities or initiatives supported by Mideastweb.
What is the difference between this list and PeaceWatch/ViewPoints?
PeaceWatch/Viewpoints is an edited list that publishes commentary and items received at most two or three times a week, with occasional news bulletins. It is not the place for brief comments, fast exchanges or announcements that people must see now, because it takes time to edit it, put it together and send it out. Most PeaceWatch/Viewpoints readers do not want more than 2 or 3 letters a week and complain if they get much more.
What should I do if I find a posting particularly insulting or problematic?
Please write to the moderator if you think a particular posting or person is a problem, especially if you are being harassed off list.
How do I subscribe?
See instructions at the top of this page. You must send us a letter introducing yourself as well as sending a "subscribe" command to the automatic list server.
Note: When you join MidEastWebdialog you agree to all guidelines on this page and on the MidEastWeb Guidelines page. They are for your protection and for the protection of others, and are intended to ensure a constructive dialog.
How do I send mail to the list?
After you subscribe, send mail to
How can I reply to letters?
This is not as simple as it should be. If you click the reply button on your mail program, you may be sending mail to the the individual who sent the letter. If this happens, click reply all instead, and then delete the address of the sender.
How come mail that I sent wasn't posted?
Mail that you send to the list should appear in your inbox after it is approved. If mail is rejected, you will get a rejection message and an explanation, If mail does not appear, then one of the following is possible:
You sent mail to the wrong address.
Your server did not respond to yahoogroups and so you got a "soft bounce" (temporary condition) or a "hard bounce" - the server thinks your e-mail address is dead. If that happens,
Moderators missed the mail or it got lost somewhere- write to us.
You lost your posting privileges - either you sent an offensive letter or you spammed the list without responding to other people's posts.
How come mail from Mideastwebdialog stopped?
You may have gotten a "hard bounce" because the yahoogroups server could not talk to your server. If that happens,
How do I unsubscribe?
To unsubscribe, send mail to . Please don't send "unsubscribe" letters to the whole list. You will not be unsubscribed and you will just clutter up people's inboxes. Thanks.
I am getting too much mail. Can I get a "brief version"?
Yes. After you subscribe, send mail to
I am going away for awhile, do I have to leave the list and rejoin?
No, you do not. If you are going away temporarily, send mail to .
I want to restore full mail service after sending "nomail" or "digest," what should I do?
Send mail to .
I am changing my address - what should I do?
Unsubscribe from your old address before it is discontinued. Subscribe from your new address and tell us what your old address was and explain that you are changing your address, so we don't ask for an introductory letter.
If I have technical questions, or comments that I want to send only to the moderator, where can I send them?
Send questions and off-list comments to us. ()
Where can I view previous letters?
Yahoogroups maintains an archive. Go to http://www.yahoogroups.com/messages/mideastwebdialog/
Middle East Gateway