- Access rules
- Posting rules
- TOR Network
- Suck feeds
- Content related rules
1. Access rules
Aioe.org is a small non-profit project that sells nothing to its users and does not receive any kind of subsidy to provide the service. All expenses are paid by service administrators out of their pocket and this is their gift to service users. At the same time, the system resources are few because a more powerful system would cost more than the administrators can afford to pay. For this reason, the use of the service by clients is subject to some limits that are necessary to prevent a small number of users from consuming all available resources. In order not to annoy the users, these limits are set at such high levels that it is almost impossible to overcome them with an ordinary use of the service but nevertheless all the clients must remember that they exist. The most important rules that all users must comply with are the following:
Any IP address that exceeds these activity thresholds is banned from the server. On the website of the service are available a document about every rule that users must observe and the full list of all banned IP addresses.
2. Posting rules
Since aioe.org does not use any authentication mechanism, posting rules are more severe than those imposed by other servers on their users. Although this behavior is uncomfortable for users because it forces them to follow many rules when they post their messages, on the other hand it is the price to pay for sending messages without authentication. Rules are the following ones:
- No more than 40 messages per day
Each IP address - whether it’s your client, or your whole network - has the right to post no more than 40 messages per day; accepted and rejected messages are counted together. If an IP address sends more than five articles that are rejected by the server, it looses the right to post for the next 24 hours. Those who need to post an higher number of articles should choose a server which uses some sort of authentication, like eternal-september.org or Albasani.
- Each article posted through this server must be smaller than 32KB.
Aioe.org does not carry binary groups so this limit is very resonable for probably all text articles.
- Headers must be smaller than 8192 bytes each one.
Large headers are useless and waste system resources. We strongly recommend our users to avoid the X-Faces header.
- HTML posts are forbidden.
Users have always been forbidden to post HTML only messages on USENET because many newsreaders are not able to handle HTML tags correctly and because HTML code allows potentially dangerous remote content to be included in some message.
However, it is allowed to post multipart messages that include a plain text part and another part in html on a small number of groups that explicitly allow it (especially the clari and aioe hierarchies)
- Digital signatures
Users are encouraged to digitally sign their messages using PGP keys. The signature can be included either directly in the message body (inline PGP) or as part of a multipart message (PGP/MIME or S/MIME). Those who make use of digital signs should remember to make their public keys available to all other users.
- Attachments are forbidden (outside of aioe. * hierarchy)
For security reasons it is strictly forbidden to post binary messages encoded with uuencode or yenc. Aioe.org serves to discuss, it is not a file sharing platform.
For the same reason, users can include binary attachments to their messages only if they are sent to a group that is part of the aioe.* hierarchy.
- Quoted, blank and empty lines must be less than 80% of total body.
A quoted line begins with ">" or "|", a blank line contains only spaces an empty one includes only a single newline ("\n") character. The argument of the Date header must be correct. Often spammers send messages with a future date in order to become visible in the top of article list on clients which sort their groups by date; this implies that sender's system clock has to be properly configured.
- Articles can be posted to no more than five groups at once.
No message is acceptable in a so large number of groups.
- Articles that do not have a followup-to header cannot be posted to more than three groups.
There is no serious reason for users to send messages to many newgroups without specifying where the replies have to be posted. This behavior annoys other users because it forces them to read many responses posted on other groups.
- No more than three groups inside the Followup-To header.
Articles that include a followup-to header cannot have more than three groups in that header.
- Control messages are forbidden.
Control articles are always forbidden because many people use them as an easy way to damage the server. Cancel articles are forbidden. If you think before you post, you don’t need to cancel. Sporadic accidents are usually tolerated by people s there's no need to cancel.
- Even if the server does not require clients to post using a valid email address inside their from headers, thw ’From’ header must include a syntactically correct email address (email@example.com). It’s not mandatory to use a real name or email address.
3. TOR Network
TOR is a system intended to enable online anonymity, composed of client software and a network of servers which can hide information about users' locations and other factors which might identify them. Use of this system makes it more difficult to trace internet traffic to the user, including visits to Web sites, online posts, instant messages, and other communication forms. Each time that an user requests to establish a connection with an internet site through TOR, the network assigns him a different IP which replaces the original client's address when the remote server is queried. On a side, this strategy makes each user anonymous because the remote site can't know which real client is using that IP address in that time. On the other side, this behaviour makes also impossible for a site which doesn't use any authentication method to ban a specific TOR user from his host because TOR clients change IP address each time that establish a connection and a server without authentication can ban IP addresses only.
Due past large abuses which were impossible to block without banning the whole network, currently TOR users can't post messages through Aioe.org but they're still allowed to read the news through this site.
4. Suck feeds
Public news servers have got the main disadvantage to be slower than commercial sites when a huge number of article is requested. Those who need more speed often set up a local news server and configure an external program to download the articles from a real remote news server. This way of proceeding is usually called suck feed and Aioe.org allows and encourages this behaviour. At the same time, since this process consumes a lot of system resources, all clients must respect some limits in the use of the server that are described in the access rules (see above) section of this document and in a specific page that lists all of them.
5. Content related rules
When each user writes their messages, he must remember that a number of behaviors are forbidden. These are common sense rules that must always be respected by everyone.
- No crimes
Identity theft, threats, defamation, hate speech, pedophilia and publishing personal data of other people are considered crimes in many States including USA and EU. The apology of certain crimes can also be prohibited by some national law.
- No spam
Newsgroup spam is strictly forbidden. Everybody should always consider that usenet convention defines spamming as "excessive multiple posting", that is, the repeated posting of a message or substantially similar messages.
- No forgeries
It's strictly forbidden to impersonate other users. This implies that local clients can not use an email address already choosen by others, regardless of whether it is valid or not.
- No morphing
Users can not change the identity they use to post in order to evade the killfile of other users. Although users are allowed to change their identity sometimes, this must happen without disturbing others.
- The netiquette must always be followed
The netiquette consists in a set of rules that all newsgroup users must respect when interacting with each other. These rules serve to maintain a pleasant environment within the groups and in order to attribute a common sense to everyone's behaviors. Those who need more information about netiquette can find it by reading the following page: http://linux.sgms-centre.com/misc/netiquette.php