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My, how times have changed. When this FAQ was first written, there were a few general lists (the Global Jewish Information List, Mail.Jewish, Mail.Liberal-Judaism, and some Chabad lists). Since then, the Internet has exploded, and there are more lists then there are commandments in the Torah. Furthermore, the lists of lists, and their locations, change so frequently it is hard to keep up.
First, some general comments:
Most lists operate using software such as listserv, listproc, or majordomo. With this software, you send a subscription address to a general list address, in a predefined format (for example, to subscribe to MLJ (mail.liberal-judaism), you send a message of the form "subscribe mlj yourfirstname yourlastname" to email@example.com). There is a different address you use for submissions to the list.
Some lists provide an easy to use web interface for subscription and unsubscription (to continue the example, for MLJ you would visit http://www.mljewish.org/). Often, such an interface is easier to use.
Having said that, here are some of the major places to find lists.
Shamash.Org. Shamash (the home of the SCJ FAQ) is a central information repository for the Jewish community. It provides a large number of mailing lists, including mail.jewish and mail.liberal-judaism (two of the oldest). A list of all Shamash lists may be found at http://www.shamash.org/help/listoflists.html. You can also send the command "lists" to firstname.lastname@example.org. Listproc based.
Virtual Jerusalem. When the FAQ started, Virtual Jerusalem was called Jerusalem One, and was just beginning to host lists. Now Virtual Jerusalem, it is a major Jewish portal and a major home to Jewish lists. A list of all Virtual Jerusalem lists (combined with a subscription form) may be found at http://vjlists.com/
Egroups. Another major source of Jewish lists is the Egroups server, which provides people with an easy mechanism to set up lists. The list of Jewish Egroups lists may be found at http://www.egroups.com/dir/Society/Religion_and_Spirituality/Judaism
There are also some organizations that provide mailing lists focused primarily on teaching Torah. Some of these organizations include:
Chabad. Subscription information on the Chabad lists may be found at http://www.chabad.org/subscribe.html.
Project Genesis. Subscription information on Project Genesis lists may be found at http://www.torah.org/subscribe/.
Ohr Sameyach. The Ohr Samayech lists are managed by Virtual Jerusalem, and may be found at http://vjlists.com/
UTJ. The Union for Traditional Judaism sponsors quite a few lists. Information may be found at http://www.jump.net/~austinjc/lists/main.html
You will also find that most of the congregational and rabbinic organizations have mailing lists, such as UAHC (http://www.uahc.org/), Jewish Theological Seminary (http://www.jtsa.edu), and so forth.
Another good way to find mailing lists is through a normal Internet meta-search engine (i.e., one that searches multiple indexes), such as http://www.dogpile.com/. Try searching for "Jewish Mailing Lists". The Liszt server at http://www.liszt.com/select/Religion/Jewish/ also provides a list of a few Jewish mailing lists.
Another good source for mailing list info is The Directory of Jewish Electronic Services, which is part of the Global Jewish Information Network server at http://www.jewishnet.net/. The specific URL for the list of mailing lists is http://www.jewishnet.net/subjects/lis.html.
The FAQ is a collection of documents that is an attempt to answer questions that are continually asked on the soc.culture.jewish family of newsgroups. It was written by cooperating laypeople from the various Judaic movements. You should not make any assumption as to accuracy and/or authoritativeness of the answers provided herein. In all cases, it is always best to consult a competent authority--your local rabbi is a good place to start.
Hopefully, the FAQ will provide the answer to your questions. If it doesn't, please drop Email to email@example.com. The FAQ maintainer will endeavor to direct your query to an appropriate individual that can answer it. If you would like to be part of the group to which the maintainer directs questions, please drop a note to the FAQ maintainer at firstname.lastname@example.org.
© (c) 1993-2004
Daniel P. Faigin <email@example.com>