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Announcing the Artima Interest Groups

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Bill Venners

Posts: 2284
Nickname: bv
Registered: Jan, 2002

Announcing the Artima Interest Groups (View in Weblogs)
Posted: Apr 21, 2004 9:43 PM
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Artima Interest Groups is a free service that allows communities to keep informed and discuss issues. Each interest group is essentially a news feed that serves a specific community. If you would like to serve as a moderator for an interest group for your own community, send us an email.
Tonight I've launched a new feature at Artima called Interest Groups, a free service that allows communities to keep informed and discuss issues. Each interest group is essentially a news feed that serves a specific community. The news feed is moderated by one or more volunteers from the community. Anyone can submit news items for consideration. The moderators check the accuracy of the submissions, and decide which news items to approve. Approved items appear on web pages at, in two RSS feeds, and form a topic for further discussion in the Artima Forums.

To start with, we have two communities set up with interest groups, the Jini Community and the Java Community Process (JCP):

Each interest group has an RSS feed for its news items. Just click on the XML icon on the pages above, or on the About Artima Interest Groups page. You can also subscribe to an aggregate RSS feed that contains every approved post in every interest group, which shows up on the main interest groups page:

An Artima Interest Group is like having a Slashdot or TheServerSide.COM for your own community. TheServerSide.COM does a great job of serving the enterprise Java community, but where do you go for J2ME news, or Jini news, or JXTA news, or Python news, or Ruby news, or C++ news, or C# news? All of these communities have existing ways to stay in touch over the internet, including Usenet news groups, email mailing lists, and some web sites. Some people are web oriented, and prefer a Slashdot-style source for news and discussion to Usenet or email. Those are the kind of people Artima Interest Groups are intended to serve.

If you think an interest group would be useful to your community, please email me. Include in your email the name of your community, your involvement in that community, and how you think an Artima Interest Group could help serve that community.

We require that each interest group have at least two moderators, preferably three. The moderators, who are volunteers from the community, recieve an email when someone posts an item. They judge the appropriateness, check the accuracy, and either reject or approve each item. Only approved items show up on the web pages and in the RSS feeds. The moderators cannot all work for the same company, and must be willing to work within the following guidelines, which appear on the page moderators use to approve, edit, and reject posts:

At, we are very concerned about upholding a high standard of journalistic ethics. As an Artima Interest Group moderator, you will be making editorial decisions. This is an important responsibility. Please keep the following guidelines in mind as you decide which news items to approve:

  • Editorial Independence - Your mission as an interest group moderator is to serve your community, not your employer. If you feel you can't act independently, then please let us know and we'll find others to moderate your group.
  • News, not Endorsements - Approving posts about new product releases is fine, so long as you feel it qualifies as news that your community would find useful. However, stay away from endorsements. For example, "Acme has released version 3.0 of their word processor" is news. "Acme's new word processor is the best word processor on the market" is an endorsement.
  • Accuracy - Please check all URLs and take time to read the linked-to content. Make sure the linked-to content is good journalism as well. Ensure that the text of the news item is accurate.
  • Citations - Give credit where it's due. When linking to an article, for example, include the author's name and the name of the publication, as in: "JavaWorld has published an article by John Developer on the generics proposal."
  • Think Service - At, we are very concerned about the reader experience. As an Interest Group moderator, your role is to provide a service to the readers in your particular community: to help them stay informed, to reach each other with information, to stay connected.

So don't be shy. If you have an idea of an interest group that you think might work, please send me an email.

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