of an empty in box? Wish for more interesting mail? Join a mailing list or online
community. Kristen McQuillin delivers 30 fun subscriptions.
Mailing lists come in two
basic forms: announcements and discussions. An announcement list is a one-way
communication from the author to his of her readers; in essence, its an email
newsletter. Discussion lists are interactive; subscribers can write to one another through
the list. Some discussion lists are moderated to keep the conversation on topic and
An online community, such as those found at Yahoo! Groups or MSN Communities, takes a
discussion list one step further by giving subscribers access to web-based tools like
chat, calendars and photo albums.
These announcement lists deliver interesting reading to your inbox.
Gadget Watch. All the latest cool toys in
a weekly roundup from J@pan Inc. Info: www.japaninc.com/subscribe_news.html
Japan Lite. Amy Chavez weekly
humorous insights into living in Japan. Info: www.amychavez.addr.com
Japan Today. From Metropolis sister
publication, news headlines with morning or evening delivery. Subscribe: firstname.lastname@example.org
Worths personal newsletter of random musings on Asia, technology, and
life. Subscribe: email@example.com
News and commentary from a progressive perspective including press cover-ups in Japan.
Sensei. A newsletter for language
teachers. Includes tips for teaching outside of formal classroom settings, sales
techniques, scheduling strategies, language barrier hazards etc. Subscribe: firstname.lastname@example.org
Not only do these organizations have mailing lists, but they meet face-to-face at
locations around Tokyo. Some of the lists below are announcement-only, others are for
Discussions and political news for US citizens of the Democratic persuasion, plus
announcements of DAJ events. Subscribe: DemocratsAbroadJapanemail@example.com
International womens technology organization talks about digital lifestyles.
Goannas. Aussie football team uses
their mailing list to inform members of upcoming matches. Subscribe: firstname.lastname@example.org
Simulation Boardgamers Society of Japan. This discussion list focuses on where to
gather to play games and on topics relating to history and gaming. Subscribe: HisSimSouthKanagawaemail@example.com
International Gamers Guild. 111 members form Japan's largest
role-play gaming group. Subscribe: JIGGfirstname.lastname@example.org
Tango Tokyo. Exchange of information on
the Argentine dance scene in Tokyo-where to learn, where to dance, and how to find
partners. Subscribe: email@example.com
Food and Good Books. A new group dedicated to reading and eating. Info:
Dance Society. Where
to dance the Lindy Hop in Tokyo and discussion of this energetic art form. Info: www.impetus.ne.jp/lindyhop/tsds/tsds.ml.eng.html
Members of these mailing lists may never meet in person, but they form a strong online
community based on special interests.
Discussion Group. Martial arts students and instructors from around the world discuss the art.
Being a Broad. An active list offering
advice and daily living support for foreign women in Japan. Subscribe: firstname.lastname@example.org
Britnet. An ideal way to get in touch
with other expats from the UK. Info: www.british-expats.com/bmlist.html
Japan Friends. A mix of personal ads,
questions about Japan, and conversations with people from all over the world. Info:
Japan Space. Discussion of the Japan Space
Agency & its programs. Subscribe: email@example.com
Japan Topics. A mix of subject matter on
modern Japan from lowbrow to highbrow. Subscribe: firstname.lastname@example.org
Conversations on many topics in romanized Japanese and English. Info:
J-Food-L. Conversations on everything
related to Japanese food and food culture. Info: http://www.bento.com/jfooinfo.html
J-League. Soccer fans discuss Japan's
top professional league and its national team. Subscribe: japan-Lemail@example.com
Commentary and advice on living a happy life in Yokohama. Subscribe: firstname.lastname@example.org
Technical discussions on Japanese computing-not for the timid! Info: http://www.msdi.co.jp:8001/public/info/nihongo-computing
RealJapan. A list for teens and a
companion to the RealJapan.net website. Subscribe: email@example.com
Szumo. This sumo list for
Hungarian-speaking fans gets a surprising two to ten messages per day. Subscribe: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bilingual technical group for Linux and open source geeks. Info: http://www.tlug.gr.jp/list.html
Tokyo Scream. This 70-member mailing list
focuses on Japanese indie and underground bands. Subscribe: email@example.com
Kids Not to me
missed if you have children in Tokyo. Info: http://www.tokyowithkids.com/
If you didnt see the sort of mailing list youd like to join, dont
despair; this is just a sampling. Visit the following sites and browse through the
thousands of online communities or start one yourself.
MSN Communities http://communities.msn.com
Yahoo Groups http://groups.yahoo.com
Yahoo Clubs http://clubs.yahoo.com
mailing list etiquette
Participate. Its OK to lurk quietly and read messages from a list, but
youll find that discussion lists are much more interesting if you write, too.
Be polite. Although some mailing lists are insult-fests, play nice when
youre new to a list. Once you are part of the community, anything goes.
Use your spellchecker. Good grammar and spelling make a positive impression and help you
get your point across clearly.
Dont cross post. If you have a question that could be answered by either of two
lists (for example, Tokyo with Kids or Being A Broad), choose one. Sending the same
message to two lists irritates everyone who reads both.
Quote wisely. Its best to delete most of the original message when you reply. Quote
any relevant parts and remove the rest. Including the entire original is unfriendly to
readers who get a digest, and it wastes space in everyones inbox.