About the ASP Newsgroups

There are hundreds of ASP members who will swear that the best thing about the ASP is the conversations that have gone on in ASP.MEMBERS, and before that, in the CompuServe forum. It's rare that a question gets asked that doesn't get an intelligent answer from someone who has "been there." The discussions are private; you will hear answers to questions in members that you won't hear elsewhere, because the group isn't open to the rest of the world.

The ASP newsgroups are non-distributed newsgroups. That means that they exist only on one newsgroup server. By comparison, most of your local Internet access providers have made a news server available to you with somewhere from 10 to 50 thousand public newsgroups, including such useful groups as comp.software.shareware.authors and comp.risks. These are distributed groups-?their messages appear on most of the news servers run worldwide, although the operator of each news server can choose which groups to turn on or off. Since the ASP groups are not distributed, they're not available through those news servers; to read these groups, you must set a reader program to access the ASP's news server directly.

There are three sets of ASP newsgroups. First, there are public groups, currently including asp.ask_the_asp and asp.pad_support; these are open to anybody, and do not require passwords. The asp.ask_the_asp group is moderated, so any posts you make will not appear in the discussion immediately--when you post a message, it goes to a list supervisor, who checks the message to be sure that it is appropriate for a public group.

Second, there are the groups for the board of directors and for various projects, including asp.boardroom and the assorted asp.committee groups. Depending on the work in progress in each committee room, you may or may not be able to read the messages in these rooms with your password, or even see the group names in your news reader. If you are joining one of these groups, the newsgroup manager will turn on access for you, and then you'll have to refresh the groups list in your reader to see and read the committee areas.

Finally, there are the discussion groups for members, including asp.members for general software business topics, asp.marketing for marketing-related topics, asp.technical for programming and HTML help, and the community groups for off-topic chatter. Recently a new newsgroup (asp.members.classifieds) has been created for posting member offers and other trading type posts.

Web-Based Interface and Search Feature:

Every now and then the question arises, "Is there any way to access the ASP Member-Only newsgroups from the Web?" Yes, there is! If you are an ASP member, please click on the following link for a Web-Based Interface to the ASP newsgroups. There is also an advanced search feature through this interface:

Quickly access the ASP newsgroups from these links. Also read our Newsgroups FAQ, Newsgroups Policy, and Technical Instructions.

Groups for Members Only:

ASP.Members - Where all the hot Shareware topics are discussed!
ASP.Members.Marketing - Where marketing strategies and tips are shared.
ASP.Members.Technical - Got a technology/programming question? Ask it here!
ASP.Members.Classifieds - This newsgroup is for discussing member offers and member press releases.
ASP.Members.Pad_Specs - Help shape the future of PAD by participating in the newsgroup dedicated to defining the PAD Specs.
ASP.Members.Official - Official announcements
ASP.Members.Townhall - This newsgroup is for discussion of ASP activities, direction, and organization.
ASP.Members.Schmooze / ASP.Members.Soapbox - Talk with other members around the "water cooler".
ASP.SIG.Games - This newsgroup is for discussing all aspects of computer games and is intended for use by the provisional ASP Indie Games Special Interest Group (SIG).

Public groups:

ASP.PAD_Support - Support group for PAD Project

We invite you to drop by the newsgroups. It's easy and it will be worth your time. There are detailed instructions for some of the popular readers located here.


In order to gain access to the newsgroups that are reserved for ASP members only, you will need a login name and password. The passwords are individually assigned, so if you don't have a current name and password, you'll need to contact the ASP Newsgroup Manager to obtain them.