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Revision as of 16:39, 18 March 2014
a.k.a. le jboste or la jboste, Lojban lists.
See also Lojbanic Forums.
The information on this page is largely superseded by Lojbanic Forums.
The web interface through which you can join this mailing list (and some others) is available at: 
Beginning Mailing List is the Wiki page that inspired the list's creation.
The list is intended to provide a forum for Lojbanic beginners to pose questions, without the worries they might have about the Lojban Mailing List.
The existance of this list is not to say that asking questions on the other list is bad or appropriate. However, the number of beginning-ish questions being posted to Lojban Mailing List he other list seems to be going down. The conclusion Jay Kominek drew was that beginners are getting the idea that that list isn't a good place to ask questions, regardless of how that list is advertised. So I created the beginner's list as a place where it is made explicitly clear that beginners are welcome to ask questions.
Robin Powell runs an alternative, non-yahoo version at .
The mailing list was until now the only discussion forum for Lojban; as a result, it was easy to keep track of. This Wiki has usurped that function, and one Lojbanist (Bob LeChevalier) has expressed dismay at the bifurcation.
An etiquette question arises: should questions of usage be diverted to the mailing list? Should the mailing list be alerted when questions of usage arise? What about beginners' enquiries? What about traffic in the reverse direction?
This is an online resource. It should be used as such. It should be improved as an online resource by posting major issues here. Since the list is still the primary discussion mode, or tries to be, questions should be asked there first. However, lojbab should support this wiki as it is the first evolution toward more naturalistic as opposed to perscriptionist lojban as it is not controlled by the Lojban Cabal, and will allow lojban to grow as a language - not in size, but in wealth of language. Since it is hard for the LLG to monitor the Wiki and respond to everything, the wiki gives more control to the community - which I thought was considered a Good Thing. Let usage decide, even off-list usage.
There aren't enough people that agree on anything to form a Cabal quorum! --xod
My inclination is to agree jbocre: with "This is an online resource" &c. My inclination is also to alert the list when significant issues of usage come up, which I have been attempting to do. Not to do so would, I think, be irresponsible to the language community as a whole. But inasmuch as the Wiki has seen both important metalanguage on Lojban, and --- arguably as important --- significant use of Lojban itself in squibs, it is decidedly a Good Thing. Even if not always an Enjoyable Thing. -- nitcion.
P.S. Not that the Lojban Cabal controls the mailing list in any real sense. (If this subtopic sees responses, please create a new subtopic: Lojban mailing list and the Lojban Cabal. But I don't think it necessary.)
Indeed, the community would do well, IMO, to grow beyond the mailing list. The community awfully needs a place where beginners don't have to deal with endless arguments about grammatical details, and where a culture can start to flourish without people beating down and attacking attempts. (So as not to sound like I'm making anonymous attacks, you can inquire privately to me about what I'm referring to, assuming you can't figure it out.) I'd been thinking about offering publically to accept questions from beginners who were afraid of the mailing list, now I'm thinking maybe they might be better served by another mailing list, lojban-beginners or something, wherein technical argument is banned. (Why, just today we saw someone's unsubscription message they tried sending to the list. Who knows, maybe they were turned off by the arguments?) --Jay
(p.s.- I don't think doing this would harm the main mailing list, as the traffic on it has been growing drastically this year. Why, this month we'll more than surpass 1000 messages, which will be 1/10th of all traffic the list has ever seen, in a single month!)
- It's always been Lojbab who's been opposed to splitting the list. If it were to split, though, I think it should be the technical discussions that are hived off to a Lojban-tech list. The list called "Lojban" should be the list with the broadest appeal. -- And Rosta
Jay, I know who you mean :-) , and truly, I'm not offended. (you were the furthest person from my mind...) Until now, the contention has been that the list cannot survive the split, because there's too few participants. This may well no longer be the case.
The Klingon list resolves this by distinct headers in email; that's been tried on Lojban list many a time, and failed. I don't think a separate list is a bad idea. OTOH, jbosnu does exist, and tends not to get much traffic; on the rare occasions we do Lojban chat, it's terribly convenient to do it on the list you're already on. Just food for thought... -- nitcion
One more question, though? In my day, I benefitted a lot from people offering corrections to my text. In fact, I wish people would do so to me more often. I understand this would also not be licit on a a beginners' list, so I'm wondering how, if beginners get things wrong (and I mean uncontroversially wrong, like dropping cu) they do learn better? Encourage them to go into the main list when they're confident enough? Offlist corrections, like Robin's suggested for the story game?
The point of the beginner's list would be for a beginner to be able to get an answer to a question which they can understand (and to do anything else related to Lojban they want, as long as it doesn't devolve into arguing in English). And for the answer(s) to be written by people who are willing to tolerate mistakes (as at least one party has made clear he isn't willing to do). If the answerers have a disagreement, and can't decide on the semantics of something, they take it to the main list, and the beginner is given him the best answer that can be given at that point, with a note saying that they just started a raging debate on the other list about how it works, and that they might want to ask the question again in a month to see how the argument turned out. Further, some benevolent moderator (I'm volunteering, FWIW), will forward developments to the beginners which they might be interested in. (Like the creation of Nick's lessons) I'm not entirely sure of the mechanics of how I want the list to work, beyond making it a place where beginners can ask questions without many of the worries I had when I first subscribed to the Lojban list and had all kinds of questions about every other page of The Book. --Jay
Sooooo... uncontroversial corrections OK, as long as you're not an arsehole about it (i.e., perhaps, only offer them when someone solicits them, or don't harangue people at length but do something clean like: "You should probably say XYZ instead. For reasons why, see Refgram, p. n, or Lessons, page blah, or Insert no more than a paragraph of expanation here.") (If I've misunderstood 'tolerate', please tell me; the alternative, discussion without correction, is I think the niche served by jbosnu.) And the minute controversy arises, it goes to the main list. Do I have it right? I know I'm jumping the gun on mechanics, so you don't have to answer right away... -- nitcion.
This is a great idea. do you have a philosophical problem with using Yahoo, which hosts the other four Lojban mailing lists? I would love to see newer blood. We have had a few names pop in, like that woman doing Bible xlations, but none stuck around .uinai --xod
None. Yahoo is sort of lame, but it is convinent, and convinence for beginners is the goal here. --Jay
Furthermore if people are searching the directory of mailing lists on Yahoo and discover Lojban, they may be more comfortable joining one for beginnners. --xod
Impossible to manipulate the archives of, I understand, but the 'list of record' remains the main list, so that's not adding to our woes... -- nitcion.
I can arrange for another archive to be maintained, theoretically. I don't see a need, though... The Beginning list wouldn't really be in competition with jbosnu. It would be an appropriate forum for English questions. (And, in fact, I'd anticipate that most questions would be formulated in English, with just tidbits of Lojban. Requests for commentary or "is this right?") --jay