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Archive-name: sports/rugby-union-faq/advancement
Version: 1.02
Last-modified: October 10th 2001
Posting-Frequency: monthly

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======= Kick off:  Table of Contents =======

1st Half: This Newsgroup

1.1)  What is the Rugby Advancement Project?
1.2)  What is this newsgroup's mode of operation?
1.3)  Is this newsgroup for me?
1.4)  Where can I view all messages and proposals that have been
1.5)  BLSR-UA Charter
1.6)  When, why and how did BLSR-UA come about?

Half time: Where to Find Facts Online

2.1)  Where can I find copies of the game's Laws?
2.2)  Where is there administrative info?
2.3)  What sites carry historical background?
2.4)  Where can I find a general information Rugby FAQ?

2nd Half:  Moderation & Posting

3.1)  What is a moderated newsgroup?
3.2)  What are the posting procedures for this group?
3.3)  How does this group's moderation system work?
3.4)  Can I post anonymously?
3.5)  What posting hints make the group easier to read?
3.6)  Should I use tags on my subject headers?
3.7)  What is this about header information added in this newsgroup?

Full time:  Back to Reality

4.1)  About this FAQ
4.2)  Addresses & Credits
4.3)  Disclaimer

This document covers only areas directly associated with this
newsgroup. For answers to general questions on Rugby Union such as its
history, competitions, commonly used abbreviations, non BLSR-UA
Internet related sites, etc. refer to the FAQ
(section 2.4).

A1.1========= The Rugby Advancement Project =========

This project began with the idea to create an Internet forum in the
form of a usenet newsgroup, that would better allow Rugby Union to
exploit the ability of its supporters so as to advance its cause.
Thus,, also known as
BLSR-UA, was born. The project also includes the website and three email lists.

There is the discussion list which
is gatewayed with the newsgroup (messages thus appear in both the
newsgroup and this e-list). This allows the group to be followed
through either or both of usenet and email.

There is a newsletter,,
also open to all, and a closed BLSR-UA administration list.
Subscription and website details for the open email lists are in
section 4.2.

There are also archives of all postings, allowing web based reading
present and past. See section 1.4 for more.

A1.2========= The Newsgroup's Mode of Operation =========

The newsgroup is intended to function by having an administration
comprised of facilitators, moderators and a faq maintainer encouraging
an environment for constructive endeavour. Most critical is the
contribution of the game's supporters in providing their knowledge and

Active facilitators occur by any individual claiming responsibility
for and executing effectively this role. Their job is essentially to
help move discussion towards purposeful ends. Claimants must inform
the faq maintainer as to their status. Anyone wishing to offer their
services on the project's administration as facilitators or moderators
may do so by emailing:

The intention is to work cooperatively with like minded groups and the
game's authorities, so as to be of service to the game. The idea is to
do something of practical value. The group is well positioned to act
as an agent for networking. The diverse views available are ideal for
stimulating development. Ideas can be worked out and information
exchanged. Good ideas will be allowed to multiply not wither. The
intention is that specific projects will be developed. Polls will be
conducted and appropriate groups approached.

It is hoped that as it evolves it will, through its own work and
association with various similar groups, develop a reputation that
will gain recognition from the game's authorities, thus allowing for
the game to prosper from any of its worthwhile endevours.

In order to help achieve the project's objectives, participants are
urged to consider using language for its explanatory rather than
emotive value. Thoughtfulness in avoiding using words and phrases that
are likely to antagonize would be appreciated.

Issues that involve little more than the statement and restatement of
entrenched opinions should be particularly carefully considered.
Motives should be closely examined in order to make an attempt to
carry the matter forward in a manner that will most likely be
beneficial for the game.

Access to the forum may be achieved through usenet, email or web
interface. Details here. Those of you who wish to share their personal
philosophies and ideas on the direction of the game should feel free
to do so. These will be archived as part of the normal process at more
than one place (such as the Yahoo Groups home for the elists), but may
also find their way on to the projects website, at, with the consent of the author.

A1.3========= Why This Group Could be for You =========

Whether you are a Rugby Union fanatic, involved at a professional
level or dedicated to the amateur game or have only a passing
interest, your concern may be administrative or playing, you maybe in
a thriving or struggling Rugby area, if you have ever questioned why
things in the game are not done in a different and better way, this
group could be your forum. If you have a desire to constructively
debate issues about the game in order to improve on existing ideas,
you may find merit in being here.

Players, coaches, referees, administrators, sports medicine
professionals and fans with ideas on any aspects of the game at any
level may wish to seek involvement.

If you are a constructive critic of the game who seeks vigorous and
focussed discussion in order to make the enlightened game even more
substantial, then inquire within.

If you think worldwide multi disciplinary networking within the game
sounds like a path forward, subscribe to this group. If you want to be
a part of that force engage your brain and hit those keys. You never
know who you might impress.

A1.4===== Rugby Advancement archives =====

Rugby Advancement Project messages are archived by both Yahoo Groups
and There is also an archive specifically dedicated to
ideas and information posted to it. Ideas, as first posted, can be
found on the web at the discussion e-list's Yahoo file site:

Information posted is at:

The complete archive of messages to the discussion e-list is at:

This includes any messages posted to Please feel free to
comment on anything you find there and to put forward your own ideas
and information.

Google archives the newsgroup on the WWW. The latest messages can be
found by using:

or customize a search by going to:

These archives allow for all messages past and present to be read
through the WWW interface. As the e-list predates the newsgroup, only
the Yahoo site carries messages to it before August 24th 2001. You can
prevent your usenet postings from being archived at Google (but not
Yahoo) by ensuring you have set "X-No-Archive: yes" in your news
reader headers.

A1.5===== CHARTER: =====

Group Topic:

This newsgroup, through the proffering and development of ideas on any
element of the game and dissemination of generic information is
intended to provide practical means by which the sport of Rugby Union
may be advanced. It has as a goal the creation of an environment for
constructive, vigorous and focused discussion on all aspects to do
with Rugby Union, whether it be worldwide or local, in order to better
the sport. A wide audience is sought.

It is intended for this group to work with relevant groups both on and
off the Internet, including the sport's authorities, in a cooperative
manner in order to be of service to the game.

An administration of no less than three moderators, four active
facilitators and a faq maintainer will have as their duty:

i/ Liaison with appropriate Rugby Union authorities and related
bodies, in order that they be informed of significant proceedings
within the group.
ii/ The creation and maintenance of a pattern whereby appropriate
discussion may be made more purposeful.
iii/ The encouragement, when appropriate, of the formation of specific
projects, which may occur externally.
iv/ Organization of polls or implementation of other measures designed
to indicate the strength of support for specific proposals or findings
originating within the group.
v/ Liaison with other groups whose intentions coincide in some manner
with this group's.
vi/ Maintenance of at least the minimum number of administrative
vii/ Maintenance of communication with one another

Active facilitators occur by any individual claiming responsibility
for and executing effectively this role. A list of active facilitators
shall be kept in the group faq. Claimants must inform the faq
maintainer as to their status.

The newsgroup shall have its own faq detailing its mode of operation,
the administration staff and a list of recommended subjects for
discussion. It shall be both regularly maintained and posted to the

By these means and with the undoubted goodwill of the sport's
followers, the group is intended to forge a reputation that ensures
any good work done here will in fact be utilized for the benefit of
the sport.

Posting Guidelines:

Recommended (not exclusively) are:

* Appropriate positive criticism. Idea providers deserve
encouragement. Help keep the gene pool wide.
* Proposals for game Law amendments or additions.
* Ideas regarding the political structure and commercial development
of the game.
* Generic advice and ideas in areas such as coaching, playing,
training, administration, related products and services (providing it
is disinterested) and related medical matters.
* Concepts that help develop the game's global presence.
* Ideas for the development of Women's and youth Rugby.
* Concepts for new or improved tournaments and championship points
* Information and ideas from other sports or activities that provide
direct advantage or help to facilitate a fertile environment.
* Ideas to develop this project through integration and liaison with
like minded groups.
* Statements of personal philosophies on the game in order to enhance
the groups understanding of your ideas.
* Historical information that helps enlighten and potentially
encourages ideas even if not directly related to a specific proposal.

Unacceptable are:

* Discussion of specific matches, players, officials or match
reporting unless relevant in arguments regarding advancement of the
sport. This restriction applies to specific matters both on and off
the field.
* Flames (posts intended to insult and provoke). Provocative posting
is acceptable if there is some reasonable argument available to back
up such a method and providing it falls short of being a flame. Please
take care if using this method.
* Trolls (posts designed to attract predictable negative responses or
* Libelous statements.
* Hateful language.
* Advertising not in the spirit of the charter.
* Binaries other than encrypted signatures (please use an appropriate
* Test posting (please use an appropriate group).

Moderation Policy:

Subject matter is policed only in its requirement to meet the spirit
of the charter.

Appeals are allowed and will be considered successful if supported by
at least one of the moderators. When appropriate and possible,
rejected items will be returned to the author with an explanation. In
such cases the author will be encouraged to post a rewritten item.

Messages crossposted to other newsgroups will be entirely rejected
unless the moderator is clear that they are on topic for those groups.
If any crossposting raises objections, the moderators may restrict it.

A moderator may be removed from the moderation team at their own
volition or on unanimous agreement of the other moderators. Additional
moderators may be included with the unanimous agreement of existing

It is envisaged that the group will be human moderated.


A1.6=========== The origin of BLSR-UA =================

The idea for a Rugby advancement newsgroup occurred in July 2000. The
lack of the game's use of the Internet's potential for networking on a
widespread and practical level being the motivation. While some
constructive debate occurred in, it rarely if
ever appeared to have concrete consequences. The desire to create an
environment suitable for creativity to flourish, while allowing the
widest audience to participate was also a factor in creating a
moderated newsgroup.

The initial proposal was for a major hierarchy group called This required a formal process
culminating in a vote. The process commenced with the posting of the
following documents to newsgroups: news.announce.newgroups;
news.groups;; and other Rugby newsgroups:

Request for Discussion (RFD) on the 25th of September 2000
2nd Request for Discussion (RFD) on the 9th of October 2000
Call for Votes (CFV) on the 29th of November 2000
2nd Call for Votes (CFV) on the 12th of December 2000

Copies of these documents can be found at:

The voting ended on December 20th 2000, with the result being
announced on January 3rd 2001. This being unfavourable, two e-lists
were set up on January 20th 2001, in order to continue the process.

In July 2001 a new charter and rationale were written for a proposal
that built on the experiences to that date. This time it was decided
to place the group in the well respected bit.listserv hierarchy. The
newsgroup was created on
August 24th 2001, with the sending of the necessary control message by
the hierarchy's administrators,

A2.1============== The Laws ===============

A full set of the Laws of Rugby Union is available from the IRB

and from:

For languages other than English, try:


Ensure in all cases that you are viewing the current version.

A2.2======== Administration Information ===========

The infrastructure of the games international governing body (the IRB)
can be found at:

A brief IRB history and background is at:

A2.3=============== History ====================

Various Links:

From Encyclopedia Britannica:


1888 NZ Native tour:

Historical dissertation's by Robert Goodman: 

A2.4=========== The FAQ ===========

For a general information Rugby FAQ try the FAQ.
It can be found by:

Anonymous FTP:
E-mail: (body: send
Usenet:, news.answers and rec.answers (posted
every 30 days)

A3.1=========== Moderated Newsgroups ================

When posting to a human moderated newsgroup such as this, your article
is (or is supposed to be) redirected by the newsserver via e-mail to a
moderator by way of the group's submission address. He or she then
determines whether the item meets the criteria of the group's charter
before injecting it into the news system. This guarantees on topic
posting and eliminates spam, although your article will usually
propagate more slowly.

Many of the headers on your article will point to the moderator as it
is he or she who has injected it. It will, however carry your subject,
from, organization and if set, reply lines.

Your article may be rejected, in which case it will be returned to you
with an explanation if possible.

A3.2============= Posting Procedures ==================

Post as you normally would to any unmoderated newsgroup. If you have
problems with this method, such as your article not appearing and you
have received no rejection notice, you can submit articles by e-mail
directly to the moderators by using:
Remember that the moderation process usually imposes a delay on an
articles injection into the news system. As such please allow at least
two days before using this method.

If you wish to appeal a moderators decision on an article of yours
please contact the moderators only at the appeal address:
giving your rationale and include a copy of the rejected article.

If you need to contact the moderators other than to submit articles or
make appeals, please use only the administration address:

If you wish to send an article to other newsgroups as well, it is
recommended you post the article separately to them, rather than
crosspost. A crossposted article that has a moderated group first in
its newsgroups line will be sent only to the moderator of that group.
Unless the moderator of BLSR-UA is sure that the post is on topic for
all the groups listed, it will be rejected entirely rather than

Please do not post binaries (other than encrypted signatures) to this
group. Post the binary instead to an appropriate binary group and give
the message id for that post in BLSR-UA.

Please do not post html to this group.

Due to limitations in the moderation software used, if you use quoted
printable (MIME) for your text this can result in some reformatting,
with odd characters occurring in your posts. This can be avoided by
switching to an alternative such as 7 bit/8 bit.

A3.3=========== Moderation Administration ================

BLSR-UA has a team of four moderators. All articles are hand moderated
using software only to assist with technical aspects such as
reformatting of headers and adding some standard replies to rejected
items. Each article requires verification by only a single moderator.

Moderators will make reasonable efforts to post your article without
delay, but please bear in mind that they are unlikely to be online
full time.

All moderators receive copies of any appeal by authors of their
rejected article and such articles will be posted in BLSR-UA if any
one of the moderators supports this action.

A moderator may be removed from the moderation team at their own
volition or on unanimous agreement of the other moderators. Additional
moderators may be included with the unanimous agreement of existing

Administrative moderators are not necessarily involved with initial
verification of posts, but work in other areas such as discussion of
appeals and moderation personnel.

No remuneration is received by any moderator for their work.

A3.4============= Posting Anonymously ==================

As your article is injected into the news system by a moderator an
opportunity to post with a high degree of anonymity exists. If you
wish to munge your address, you can, but this may make replies to you
by e-mail impossible. Thus, if you do this and one of your articles is
rejected by a moderator, you may not get a reply to inform you of the

A serious solution for those who wish to post anonymously, but still
get e-mail replies, is to use free software such as Jack B. Nymble,
available from:

Alternatively you could set up a web based e-mail account. Helpful
addresses for this include:

A3.5============== Hints for Posting ===================

* Set your line length to between 60 and 70 characters to avoid your
text becoming untidily wrapped when repeatedly quoted.
* When replying, edit judiciously, to leave only what is relevant.
Attempt to address the previous writer on a point by point basis if at
all possible. Please do not quote entire long articles adding only a
brief comment of your own unless unavoidable.
* Keep in mind the thread subject. If your ideas are moving away from
it, perhaps you should start another, indicating this in the new title
by adding something like (was "such and such..."). Similarly, if a
thread is becoming unwieldy, consider a new one.
* When editing out material of possible interest it is diplomatic to
indicate this by  writing <snip> or something similar.
* You may consider clarifying deep threads by attributing words to
authors, with a "Prudence said" or "Cecelia claimed" (take care to be

A3.6============== Subject Header Tags ===============

To more readily allow readers to determine threads of interest, you
may consider tagging your subject lines. Thus a new South African
Currie Cup format might be headed as: "(SA) New Currie Cup Idea..."
Other tags might indicate:

Region: (UK), (NZ), (AUS) etc.
Law changes: (LAWS)
Political structure: (ADMIN)
Coaching advice etc: (COACH)
Sports Medicine: (MEDICAL)
Historical background: (HISTORY)

A3.7============ Information in message headers ============

Every message posted to BLSR-UA that passes through its submission
address, has information added to it by the moderation software. Most
obvious is the signature. This points to other information that can be
found in the message headers. These can be accessed in most news
readers, if they are not already showing, by hitting the "H" key. The
information available is in headers prefixed with "X-BLSR-UA" and
includes the project website, the newsgroup message submission
address, the newsgroup administration address, where to find this faq,
where to send appeals over rejected messages and some disclaimers.
This information does not appear in the e-list posting.

In time there will probably be others pointing to groups that the
project cooperates with. If you would like to see other information
there, let us know.

** A4.1===========This FAQ & Where to Find It ===========

The first informal draft of this FAQ was posted to BLSR-UA on
September 3rd 2001. The first official version was posted to BLSR-UA
on October 8th 2001. The last update was on October 10th 2001.
This FAQ can be found by:

Anonymous FTP:

E-mail: (in body: send

Usenet: and news.answers
(posted monthly)

WWW: and

Author and maintainer: Don Black. FAQ inquiries to:

A4.2=============== Addresses & Credits ================ addresses:
Article submission:


Don Black:
Ian Diddams:
Stephen Doyle:
John Hill:

Active Facilitators:

Don Black, Ian Diddams, Stephen Doyle, John Hill, Eero Tarik, Rob

Rugby Advancement Project:

Main website:
Google newsgroup archive:
Discussion email list subscribe:
Discussion email list website:
Discussion email list owner:
Newsletter subscribe:
Newsletter website:

Many were involved with the creation of this newsgroup. Amongst those
that provided their admirable support were:

Mike Amm, Steve Bloomer, Henri Burger, Ben Clegg, Ian Diddams, Stephen
Doyle, Robert Goodman, John Hill, Dave Keegan, Jon Kittilsen, Philippe
Peirsegaele, Steve Pullman, Mees Roelofs, Richard Stevens, Eero Tarik,
Rob Wallace, John Williams.

A special thanks to my fellow administrators.

The excellent free Windows based moderation software program Dmod
handles the technical side of the moderation process. It comes from
the good people at:

A4.3======================= Disclaimer ===================

The moderators of this newsgroup are not responsible for truthfulness
or legality of any of the posts.

The approval of a post by a moderator is not an endorsement by the

Posters assume full responsibility for the content of their posts.

Readers using information that appears in the newsgroup do so at their
own risk.

Posters agree that by posting items to this newsgroup they indemnify
and hold harmless the moderators and service providers.


User Contributions:

Comment about this article, ask questions, or add new information about this topic:

[ Usenet FAQs | Web FAQs | Documents | RFC Index ]

Send corrections/additions to the FAQ Maintainer:
Don Black <>

Last Update March 27 2014 @ 02:12 PM