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Re: QList Netiquette?

> Hey, guys, what do you all mean by bandwidth?  I've been studying off and
> on for a Ham license and nowhere does the definition fit anything we do on
> the internet?  I'm confused.   That's all.  It seems like a buzz word that
> is used whenever someone gets po'd at mail they don't want to skip over.

Yeah, that's pretty much what it is.

Less cynically, bandwidth is the speed at which you can pass data over a
given pipe.  For example, your average local ISP might have a T1, which
has a bandwidth of 1.536 Mbps, meaning that it can pass 1.5 million
bits in each direction.  Everything that goes towards your provider
-- users downloading web pages, incoming email, the newsfeed, &c. --
counts towards that total, and when the pipe fills up, things get slow.
Hopefully your provider can order more bandwidth without raising your
rates to cover the cost.

There's a similar effect with modems, although the dynamics are different
because modems have so little bandwidth.  That's why it takes a long time
to download your mail.

In some parts of the world bandwidth is still expensive, but everywhere
it's getting cheaper.  However -- and this is the catch -- the *time
it takes to read your mail* is *not* getting cheaper.  That's why it's
important not to send things to the list unless it will actually be
worthwhile for people to read it.

Saying that fluff mail and spam waste bandwidth is really a voodoo
argument.  People say that because it's trendy and no one understands it.
But the true scarce resource is the patience of your audience.

Basically, be considerate.