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[IP] What the IP admins really do

Right now there are only 10 admins, although we have had as many as 12 or 
13 lying around. Every week, at least two of us are on duty. The main admin 
handles all of the new profiles and bounces from the system and the help 
admin handles all the questions and problems from the HELP desk (that's the 
address that you see at the bottom of each message here). Depending on the 
number of admins, you get to be on duty every 5-6 weeks.

There are no auto-robots running around... amazingly enough there are live 
people doing all of the things to make this place go. As an example, every 
new subscription is handled by an admin, who must manually approve and 
transform the original text into a format suitable for entry into the 
system. All address changes and messages that go bounce in the night are 
also handled by one of the duty people.

Subscription changes are also part of the job. When anyone wants to stop 
their subscription, even for a short time, one of us has to manually do it 
from behind the scenes. When a member returns, we need to search for their 
old subscription to verify membership, before submitting the 
re-subscription command for it.

Then there are all the questions and problems. When someone can't get into 
the "Members Only" area, we're the ones that try and help. We also try to 
monitor the list looking for "unsubscribe" messages that are buried in 
regular threads, and other problems like: HTML mail, flames and other 
potential problem areas. We're the ones that write to you privately when we 
spot something that could be a problem.

We also have our own private email list where we can share problems and get 
answers among ourselves. Sometimes we get a little crazy, so a well 
developed sense of humor is mandatory. <vbg>

Out of the total group of admins, two of us (George Lovelace and myself) 
are designated as "senior" members... we have a few added tricks up our 
sleeves and can make some more global changes to the system that the 
regular admins cannot. Both of us have been doing this for well over 2 
years and know a lot of the backdoor tricks of the trade. Michael is not, 
strictly speaking, an admin... he's the "Listowner". It's his list, office 
space and equipment. As such, he approves general policy, does all the 
web-page stuff and is the court of last appeal. :-)

We are always looking for new admin recruits. If anyone is interested in 
volunteering their time, please let either George <email @ redacted> or 
me <email @ redacted> know. Thanks.


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