Cittern List

Additional List Admin

In the summer of 2006 the List was maintained by Roger Landes. Roger is now (starting in November 2006) a permanent full Administrator.

The owner of the List is still Anthony de Waal.

This arrangement ensures that there is a continous monitoring of the list.

The previous owner and originator, Han Speek, is also full Administrator, but is not the primary contact.

New guidelines for the Cittern List, in addition to the older ones stated below.

Because of the now 450+ members (november 2006: 600+), more attention has to be given to what should or not be posted, and in which way.

The most important: off-topic posting

Do's are:

1) Announce a social event, or your presence at a certain place and time, to make contact with List members. But once contact is established, take it off-List

2) Promote a gig of yourself or someone you know, or a music-related commercial announcement in general. But be as specific as possible, and let reactions, inquiries and/or orders be directed off-List

3) Announce a personal matter such as becoming a grand parent, getting married, or the like. But let the congratulations be directed off-List.

4) Initiation of/invitation to your own List. If you want to discuss a topic that is not related to the Cittern family but you think or know that there is sufficient interest for by some members of this List. Post a message saying how to subscribe to your List/Forum/CC email file/Chat, IRC, telephone group/whatever other means.

For all these I ask to include your email address at the bottom of the message such as:

Please reply off-List to:

Dont's are:

1) anything at all political, religious, ethnic, cultural, etc. that can be interpreted as insulting and/or ignorant. Unfortunately, that almost rules out these topics for discussion. Remember that your facial expression, a smile from ear to ear, will not be transmitted with the message. This takes some flavour from the List, but it will hopefully prevent flame wars between people who would otherwise have become or remained friends.

2) Commercial announcement other than strictly music-related. If you sell cars, don't advertise for them here. If your business is selling musical instruments, rules apply as well. Do tell us about new products, don't advertise about the existing ones unless you specifically answer an inquiry. It goes without saying that it has to be taken off-List a.s.a.p.

3) maintaining threads about things that aggrevate you such as quarrels with record companies. Mention them if you must, but take it off-List with people who have an interest in it.

All messages

For posting of all messages a few guidelines should be helpful.

1) Choose carefully the subject line. This makes it easy to delete a message that you do not want to read and/or find one that you seek. Make it descriptive, but not too long.. Start an off-topic message with the characters OT: such as "OT: session in Manhatton coming Friday".

2) Stick with the subject line. If it is about GDad tuning then answer to the issue with RE: GDad tuning. If you have a question about oiling the fretboard, start another thread for that. It increases your chances of getting an answer, and is less work for those that do not want to see your question/answer. It will probably mean three mails instead of just one when you react to more posts, but they will be far easier to handle.

3) Keep the relevant part of the message that you react to, delete the rest. Take care that the original author of the statement cannot be confused. Do not leave out text in between that may alter the context of someones message so that it now says something different. This particular guideline means a lot for people who read the digest format.

4) Think twice before you answer something that upsets you. Ask yourself: will I be saying this when the person sits before me? What will he think? What would I think? If in any doubt: don't post. Especially not on a public forum where your reply will be retrievable for years after. You may apoligize the next day, the offending post will be there to last.

Alternatives for personal email to take off-topic threads off the list are under investigation. I will announce it here and on the list when I have something arranged.

End of update, please continue to the original message below.


The Cittern List is a Yahoo Group, that is: a mailing list where only members can send and view messages. The viewing can be by single mail items, by daily digests, or only webmail. The description on Yahoo reads:

The "Cittern" list is intended for the discussion of citterns, bouzoukis and other double-strung instruments, with the notable exception of mandolins (they already have a list of their own). Exchange of information on the various instruments makers, designs, construction techniques, playing hints, relevant recordings is explicitly invited. This list is also meant as a global meeting place/community for players of above-mentioned instruments, and in that sense the exchange of off-topic messages will be deemed acceptable - within reason.

The List was originated by Han Speek in 1996, it ran on his workstation at the University of Twente, in the Netherlands. When Han decided take on a new job, the List was transported to eGroups, that later was merged into Yahoogroups. Han ran the List until March 2003, after which I was made List owner. I had been a moderator of the list for over a year at that point.

This List stands apart from most other email lists in that there is a considerable amount of Off-topic messages. This has resulted in a close community. People tell us about their new 10-string, but also how they just became a grandparent. We have differences in opinion, but respect each other. Flame wars almost never happened.
If you can't handle days where 30 messages hit your mailbox of which only two have interesting content for you, it is best to read the messages as webmail on the Yahoogroups website, or have a daily digest. If you can't stand off-topic posting, better don't subscribe :-).

I highly recommend you become a Yahoo member first if you do not yet have a Yahoo ID. You are asked a few personal questions. No need to tell the truth about your income, but I hope you will leave a real name. You even have the opportunity to upload a picture. It is much more fun to communicate with names and faces than weird nicknames. The main advantage of this way of subscribing is that you have fine control over the settings of the List, such as getting rid of HTML in the messages, and saying NO to all the offers for advertisements. Also you can stop sending the messages to your mailbox if you want some time off without actually cancelling the membership.

To join click the following link:

Click to subscribe to cittern
You will receive an email that you need to respond to before you actually become a member.

Below is a quick and dirty membership application form without Yahoo membership.

Subscribe to cittern without need for Yahoo membership
Powered by

You will receive an email that you need to respond to before you actually become a member.
It is an option to add the email address you used to subscribe later to a Yahoogroup, and with the Membership wizard you can claim the membership for the new Yahoo ID. I still recommend you do it the proper way in the first place :-).
To unsubscribe: send an email to Remember: you will need to send it from the exact email address you are subscribed with. And you need to reply to a conformation mail. So don't unsubscribe AFTER you left for the Bahama's :-). When you have a Yahoo ID, you can reach the settings of your subscription from anywhere, and you can turn the mail delivery off or unsubscribe.
In case you do have a problem, because you don't have access to your email or settings anymore, you can always ask me:

Homepage of Anthony de Waal: main page

These pages ( copyright 1999-2007 Anthony de Waal. Please link, but to the index page only!