Last-modified: 25 October 2002
Maintainer: J. Blustein <email@example.com>
Copyright: (c) 1994-2002 J. Blustein. All rights reserved. See question 0.7 for details.
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* This FAQ list will not be posted after January 2003 *
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Section 1 -- General Questions
This posting contains answers to the following questions:
1.1) What is alt.backrubs about?
1.2) I have a question not answered here. Should I post?
1.3) What does this acronym stand for?
1.4) Help! I'm new to this whole Usenet/'net thing
1.5) What must I know about anonymous posts?
1.6) What should I do about 'net abuse (spams, scams & advertisements)?
1.7) Does anyone discuss anything here anymore?
Each question begins with `Subject:' on a line of its own. Users
with suitably equipped newsreaders can automatically skip to the start of
the next question, e.g. trn will display the start of the question when you
press ^G (control-G). Of course if your newsreader doesn't do this
automatically, you can still use a search command to find the next question.
To find the answer to question 1.2 search for a line beginning with
`Q1.2)', there will be only one.
Your suggestions for changes to these articles are welcome. Please
see section 0 (entitled Administrivia and Acknowledgements) in the earlier
posting for information about whom to contact and what changes are planned.
The questions are divided into the following general sections.
Questions from each section are answered in articles of their own. A list
of all questions appears in the first article (section 0).
Section 0 Administrivia and Acknowledgements
Section 1 General Questions
Section 2 Basics of Massage
Section 3 Novice Questions
Section 4 Professional Massage
Section 5 Other Sources of Information
Section 1 -- General Questions
Subject: What is the alt.backrubs newsgroup about?
Q1.1) This newsgroup functions primarily as a place for discussion of
massage techniques and principles, and issues related to massage including
bodywork therapies, e.g. Rolfing. Although you'd be wasting energy by
posting messages seeking sexual partners here, there have been some
interesting discussions about areas of overlap between massage and sex.
See the archive for collections of such postings.
Details about the archive appear in question 5.1.2. Question 5.2
has a list of other network resources, e.g. newsgroups, with related
material. Of particular interest to professional massage therapists and
students is the BODYWORK mailing-list (see question 5.2.4 b).
Subject: I have a question not answered here. Should I post?
Q1.2) If you think your question is relevant to alt.backrubs (see
question 1.1 for a description of what alt.backrubs is about) and is not
answered in any of the six parts of this frequently asked questions list
then your question may have already have been answered and placed in the
archive. The archive contains over 3 Megabytes of postings along with some
indexes. Many of the answers in this document have been adapted from
postings in the archive; it usually provides more detailed answers to those
questions. Many questions that are answered in the archive do not appear
here. You'll have to decide for yourself if the archive has the answer to
your question but you will usually benefit by exploring it.
If you're not sure where to look for an answer to your question
then check out the lists of related network resources in section 5. There
is information there about what newsgroups to read, to post to, as well as
what essays and lists are available electronically to help answer your
health and body related questions. Question 5.2.6 is the most general.
If you do ask a question by posting please remember to request that
replies be sent to you by mail so that you can summarize them for the rest
of us. Be sure to say something like `please reply by mail, I'll post as
summary,' or it is likely that someone will think that you want replies by
mail only because you are too lazy to read the group -- I kid you not.
When it comes time to post your summary take some time to actually
summarize the mail you received. It isn't necessary to specify who gave
each answer or to quote them exactly. Do not concatenate all the messages
into one posting! By taking the time to make a proper summary you are
helping all the present and future readers of alt.backrubs. That group
includes the people who took time to write to you. Much more advice about
how to best work with the Usenet community can be found in question 1.4.
The archive is the subject of question 5.1.2 (in section 5). A
complete list of all the questions in this FAQL appears in section 0
(entitled Administrivia and Acknowledgements).
a) Acronyms peculiar to alt.backrubs:
CMT = Certified MT (see LMT and RMT)
CTS = Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
LITA = Look In The alt.backrubs Archive
LMT = Licensed MT (compare with RMT, see question 4.1 for more
information about licensing)
MT = Massage Therapist (Massage Technician, in some places)
RMT = Registered MT (usually abbreviated to MT, compare LMT)
RSI = Repetitive Stress Injury
TCM = Traditional Chinese Medicine
TMJ = dysfunction of the jaw (temporomandibular joint
ACCET = USA Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and
ABMP = Associated Bodywork and Massage Professionals
AMTA = American Massage Therapy Association
AOBTA = American Oriental Body Therapy Association
AMR'TA = Alchemical Medicine Research and Teaching Association
CCA = USA Career College Association Accrediting Commission on
Trade and Technical Schools
COMTAA = USA Commission on Massage Training Accreditation/Approval
NCETMB = USA National Certification Exam for Therapeutic Massage
NCBTMB = USA National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage
c) Other acronyms and abbreviations you should be familiar with:
ETLA = Extended TLA, i.e. a four letter acronym
FAQ = Frequently Asked Question (this is also the traditional
acronym for a list of FAQs)
FAQL = Frequently Asked Question List
FTP = File Transfer Protocol
GMT = Greenwich Mean Time
ISBN = International Standard Book Number
TLA = Three Letter Acronym
TM = Trademark
URL = Universal Resource Locator, a computer network address
standard developed in conjunction with the World Wide Web
USA = United States of America
WAIS = Wide Area Information Servers (a type of automated index
of documents available via the Internet)
WWW = World Wide Web (a global network of hypermedia documents
connected by links implemented using the Internet)
:-) = An emoticon often used to express humorous intent or
happiness, also used to abate a strong statement so as not
:) = ditto (but less formal)
d) `Please, sir, I want some more.'
For more definitions see `Frequently Asked Questions about Usenet'
which is regularly posted to the news.announce.newusers and news.answers
newsgroups. There is a list of resources to help you understand acronyms
Subject: Help! I'm new to this whole Usenet/'net thing
Q1.4) The following two newsgroups contain some excellent introductory
postings: news.announce.newusers and news.newusers.questions.
Whoever is providing you with access to Usenet should be able to
give you some basic introduction or instruction. This isn't because they
are necessarily nice, but because if they don't at least attempt to tell
you the basics then they can't blame you when you do something awful. If
they haven't offered you any advice or instruction then ask someone
responsible for some pointers to useful information. I advise you not to
ask another newcomer -- that is a great way to propagate misconceptions.
There are many introductory books about the global Internet and
Usenet. If you learn well from books then you might consider buying one or
borrowing it from a library. Some books are available for free, others are
available for sampling online as an enticement to get you to buy them. For
a fuller discussion of such books see a) the misc.books.technical
newsgroup, b) the Unofficial Internet Book List at the rtfm.mit.edu FTP
site (filename `book-list' in the directory
`pub/usenet/news.answers/internet-services') that's written
<URL:ftp://rtfm.mit.edu/pub/usenet/news.answers/> in the
standard notation. See question 5.2.4 for more information about the
rtfm.mit.edu FTP site.
Subject: Anonymous Posts
Q1.5) There isn't a lot of tolerance for anonymous posting in
alt.backrubs. This intolerance is often expressed by people not following
up or responding to anonymous posts. If there is some reason you must post
using an anonymous service you will find people more co-operative if you
give your real name and e-mail address as well as explaining why you must
use the service. In case you must remain anonymous you are advised to
mention the reason in your post. There is some discussion of this in the
`anonymous.posts' file in the archive (see question 5.1.2).
Subject: What should I do about 'net abuse (spams, scams & ads)?
Q1.6) You've just seen a chain letter, or spam, or an unsolicited and
apparently inappropriate advertisement, posted to alt.backrubs. You are
enraged. What should you do? First, take a deep breath and exhale slowly;
Calm down, this is only Usenet! :) Resolve *not* to post a message about
this to alt.backrubs -- you'll just annoy the rest of us more. Next, read
the resources listed here and choose a moral and legal course of action (or
inaction) then carry it out.
I don't like to duplicate information that is available in more
general frequent postings. Instead, I direct you to the following three
documents. This list was current as of 9 October 1995.
1) Answers to Frequently Asked Questions about Usenet
Posted to news.announce.newusers and news.answers
by Mark Moraes <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
2) How to Get Rid of Junk Mail, Spam, and Telemarketers
[Entry updated on 25 August 1996]
3) Boycott Internet spam!
[Entry added on 25 October 1996]
4) Blacklist of Internet Advertisers
maintained by Axel Boldt <email@example.com>.
5) Advertising on Usenet: How To Do It, How Not To Do It
Posted to news.announce.newusers, news.admin.misc,
news.misc, misc.answers, and news.answers
by Joel K. Furr <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
Also at <URL:http://www.danger.com/advo.html>
[Entry updated 11 August 1996, URL included 13 Feb 1997]
Subject: Does anyone discuss anything here anymore?
Q1.7) As you can see from the archive (see question 5.1.2), for a long
time there was very interesting, exciting, and sometimes insightful
discussion in this newsgroup. Alas you might find there is far less
discussion of any sort here anymore. Why is that, and more importantly,
what can you do to find the sort of information and discussion you want?
Why is that? Briefly, there was such an influx of new posters who
had no understanding of (or concern with) how Usenet functioned that they
overwhelmed the resources of the people who posted to and read discussions
in alt.backrubs. (Some say that alt.backrubs was hit harder by the
so-called September That Never Ended than other groups, but any discussion
of that is beyond the scope of this list.) Over time many of the former
regulars stopped reading the group and they were not replaced by posters
who maintained the former type of discourse. Some of the those former
posters have continued discussions in mailing lists and other networked
fora. See question 5.2 for some examples.
What can you do to find the sort of discussion and information that
you want? The `group.split' file in the archive contains excerpts from
previous discussion of related problems with the group. Here are some
suggestions from previous discussions (from least to most radical):
* Make postings of the sort you want to see, or at least about
topics that you are interested in. As Bill Arnett wrote,
alt.backrubs is a newsgroup not a magazine. If you want to read
something in it then you have to write something (a question,
comment, answer, summary, etc.).
* If you have a suitably equipped newsreader you can use killfiles
and scorefiles so that you don't have to see posts you wouldn't
read anyway. (You may have a copy of my trn style killfile just
by asking for it.)
* Abandon this newsgroup in favour of mailing lists and other fora
(see questions 4.2(a) about the BODYWORK mailing list, and 5.2.4
and 5.2.5 about online discussion fora such as
* The most radical notion is to create a new newsgroup but it is
far from clear that any new group would be free from the trouble
that has afflicted alt.backrubs.
The alt.health.massage-therapy newsgroup is an example of such a
group. With your help it could succeed.
That group was created in mid-March 2001. Some discussion
preceding the creation is in the archive's `group.split' file.
When there is a description of the group then it will appear in
[question added 13 November 2000, latest update 13 October 2001]
Jamie Blustein `No trees were destroyed to make this post' <email@example.com>
The disclaimer is the subject of question 0.6
See also http://www.ii.uib.no/~kjartan/backrubfaq/
This document is archived in ftp://rtfm.mit.edu/pub/usenet/alt.backrubs/