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Last Modified: January 24, 1997 by Russell

What is this FAQ for?

This is a list of frequently asked questions (and answers) about the discussion groups facilitated by the National Capital Freenet in Ottawa. These are often referred to as ncf.* newsgroups as the newsgroups all start with ncf. at the beginning of the newsgroup name. (Example: ncf.general).

This FAQ is aimed at people who may wish to participate in these discussion groups in the variety of forms that discussion groups can be participated in.

Why should NCF.* groups be made available to people not on the NCF?

Part of the National Capital Freenet Mission statement states that "The National Capital FreeNet is a free, computer-based information sharing network", and goes further to say that it "prepares people for full participation in a rapidly changing communications environment."

One way to achieve this goal is to try to encourage a large amount of interaction between people who are using NCF resources, and those NCF members and other people in the National Capital Region who are using other means to be connected to the Internet. The easiest way to do this is to allow for the free flow of information between this large variety of users with the largest flow of information occuring in the newsgroups facilitated by the National Capital Freenet (ncf.* groups).

How do I participate in ncf.* discussion groups?

Why is there so many complicated instructions for reading these groups when I can get access to any other newsgroup by just typing in the name?

In order to read ncf.* newsgroups using your regular Newsgroups tool, the group must be being sent to the Internet Access Provider that you are subscribed to. For various reasons the Board of Directors have decided to not make these newsgroups freely available to other providers, and only wish people to interact with these groups directly with the NCF host computers.

Not all people have the ability to make use of the FreePlan method of accessing newsgroups, or even have access to phone lines or a TELNET command, and thus some people have been excluded from participation in these Ottawa-community resource. Many people do not have the technical knowledge to make sence of all the additional instructions, making access to NCF information harder for them than access to other information in Ottawa.

If you believe that these groups should be being made available to all people in the National Capital Region, please let the Board of Directors know this by posting a message to ncf.board.9697unmoderated. If you do not have easy access to that group, post a message to

What is the Export-news Task force?

Export News project.
Links to other information