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Welcome to eMSSA, the "electronic MARTIAL SPIRIT of SOUTHERN AFRICA" mailing list

* If you ever want to remove yourself from this mailing list, send a mail to, or you you can visit and unsubscribe there.

Here's the general information for the list you've subscribed to, in case you don't already have it.

[Last updated on: 5 May 2001]

Welcome to


(Please SAVE THIS MESSAGE for future reference.)

The purpose of this list is to provide an open forum for discussion of topics related to martial arts, and topics likely to be of interest to martial artists in the Southern Africa region.

The list is open to anyone interested -- you do not need to practice martial arts, nor do you have to live in the Southern Africa region to participate. As long as your posts are valid as per the para above.

Thanks for subscribing! We are all looking forward to your participation on the list with others who have similar interests to you. PLEASE take just a few minutes to thoroughly read the Frequently Asked Questions below before proceeding.

F r e q u e n t l y A s k e d Q u e s t i o n s

Version: 2.2 (Last revision: 5 May 2001)

If you have suggestions for a future version of this FAQ, please send them to:, and it will be considered for the next revision.

1. Administrivia

1.0 What is this list all about?

The purpose of the eMSSA Mailing List is to host a dialog between martial artists, and in particular those who practice in the Southern African region ... and even those who are keen to learn more about the topic.

This is a place to share questions, tips, techniques, and knowledge on relevant topics. Members are free to advertise products, seminars, tournaments, clubs, etc., AS LONG AS the promotion is of direct interest to other members. (see 2.9 below for other limitations)

1.1 How do we define "martial arts"?

In order to keep the community as large as possible, to maximise value for list participants, the definition of martial arts will be kept as broad as possible.

All of the following are valid:

EXTERNAL styles: Tang Soo Do, Karate, Judo, Tae Kwon Do, Kickboxing, Muay thai, Jujitsu, Kung fu, Kendo, etc.

INTERNAL styles: taiji (t'ai chi), qigong (ch'i kung), xingyi (hsing-i), bagua (pakua), etc.

OTHER groups: this could include fencing, and in fact anyone who might be interested in the topic, even if they currently don't participate in any martial arts whatsoever.

1.2 Where is "Southern Africa"?

There are plenty of lists which discuss specific aspects of martial arts on the Internet. However, it was felt that a list dedicated to the needs of the Southern African martial artist was appropriate at this time.

The region would naturally include people from South Africa, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho, and Swaziland, but anyone interested in the debate, regardless of their country of residence, is welcome.

By limiting the debate to this region, we increase the chances that adverts about tournaments, seminars, and visits by international masters, will be relevant and of interest to listizens.

1.3 How is the list run

This list was founded by, and is run by, Greg Solomon. Greg holds a Second Dan in Tang Soo Do, and also trains in taiji and qigong.

Greg is the list's host and administrator. That means when you have a problem with the list, you have to go through him. Life is just like that sometimes.

Please keep in mind that Greg has another life as well, and runs this list because he wants to, not out of any obligation. It is a labour of love (but he appreciates your help in keeping the "labour" part to a minimum).

1.4 How to post a message

To post a message to the list, simply address your message to:

1.5 How to unsubscribe from the list

If you don't want to receive mail from this list anymore, you need to unsubscribe. You can do this either by:
(1) Send a mail to
(2) Visiting, or
(2) sending mail to the list's administrator at

* When you send to, your mail will be sent to the entire group.
* When you send to, your mail will only go to the administrator of the list.

1.6 How to subscribe to the list

In order to get on the list, where you would receive all the mails posted to the group, you can either send a mail to, or you can mail the list administrator at, or you can visit the OneList site at Once there, look in the Sports|Extreme section. Tada!

* Please Note: Spelling is important! The most common reason that (un)subscribe requests fail is because of spelling mistakes.
(Tip: try cut-and paste from your mail reader.)

1.7 "But what should I be doing now that I have subscribed?"

For a start, sit back and read the posts that come through the list. Take a look at the topics that arise, and get a feel for the tone of the more active members of the forum.

When you are ready (and you have read and re-read the section below called "2. List Etiquette"), you can post to the group, and thereby participate in the debate.

When you are first subscribed to the list, we request that you post a small intro about yourself to everyoe on the group - so that they know a bit about your martial arts background, where you train, etc.

Remember that by posting to you are posting to everyone who is a member of the forum!

1.8 What about physical relationships?

Uhm ...

We all tend to confine ourselves to training with people from our own style. Through this discussion forum, we will be exposed to people from other styles.

If you "meet" someone through the forum who lives near you, and with whom further debate seems like a great idea, go for it!

Meet with them, compare techniques ... knock yourselves out!

There's no reason to keep the relationship electronic.

2. List Etiquette

When you post a message to the list, keep in mind that it will be read by a variety of people, on a variety of different types of computers. Different people manage their mail in different ways, and different systems charge in different ways for internet mail. Some people are charged by the byte or by the second for connect time and bandwidth, so brevity can be important to them.

When you see something going on that you think is a truly grievious breach of protocol, please don't post a message to the list to correct it. You may send a message to the list owner, and he'll deal with it as she sees fit.

Also, please keep posts friendly and respectful in tone. Greg tries really hard not to be a List Fuehrer, so he tends to err on the side of caution wherever possible. But in those rare cases where a listizen needs to be corrected, Greg would much rather it happen just once, rather than 100 times!

Therefore, problematic behavior will elicit one warning message. If the behavior persists, the sender will be unsubscribed from the list.

2.1 Replying to a message

When replying to a message, pay attention to where the message is going. In other words, do you really want to reply to the whole list or are you trying to email a response to the author privately? Some mail programs will require you to press certain keys to reply to the list, others may require special action not to. Please be mindful that your replies are going where you want them to.

2.2 Quoting

It is a Good Thing to quote part of the message you are replying to, so that people reading it can easily find the context of your reply. On the other hand, it's usually sufficient to quote just a few lines, rather than copying the entire previous message every time.

Most mail readers have an option for quoting the previous message in a reply. Then all you have to do is cut out the parts that aren't necessary, and write your reply in the message body.

Try to keep the quotes to less than 20% of the lines of your message. (unless the whole thing is just a few lines anyway.) Not all guidelines work for all situations though, so use your discretion. Greg won't jump on you for this, unless it becomes too frequent.


Using ALL CAPS is a no-no. Bad keyboard! Heel! It is perceived on the receiving end as shouting, and can be difficult to read.

2.4 Message Formatting

If the line-lengths in your messages are too wide, they become unreadable in many mail-readers. Try setting your window to less than 80 characters (72 is a common number), and set the font to a fixed-width font like Courier. This will insure that your messages can be read on the broadest number of different system types.

2.5 Signatures

.sigs are kewl! But they should generally be less than 4,000,000 lines long. Under 5 is even better. This stuff uses bandwidth all over the net, not just on the list's server. Being reasonable about signatures and copying portions of the previous message helps keep mailing lists free to subscribers.

2.6 Flame Off!

A flame is when you call someone names instead of dancing around the issue and pretending to be nice. Flames are not only considered uncouth, they can be reason for being unsubscribed from the list. If we all keep in mind that martial artists are meant to be Masters of Discipline (tm) this should never be a problem.

This does not mean that you cannot give constructive criticism regarding any particular topic. Such posts are acceptable as long as the criticism really is contructive, it's relevant to the topic at hand, and it's done in a nice way.

2.7 Subject Headings

The "Subject:" line in the header of the message is there so that people can know what your message is about before they drop everything and read it! Try to make your subjects descriptive, and brief. And remember that when you are replying to a message, the subject won't change unless you tell it to.

Please *always* use a subject heading.

2.8 Attachments

Please, do not send attachments to the list. It's considered bad form, and even if the attachment is small, some computers have trouble dealing with them. If you need to attach a file to your message, put it on your web site and put the URL in your message. Or, simply say, "if you want this file, e-mail me personally".

2.9 Advertising and promotions

Believe it or not, adverts *are* allowed on this list. Not only are they allowed, but they are encouraged.

However, we need to make sure that the content is relevant to members of eMSSA. In others words, feel free to advertise seminars, tournaments, your clubs, equipment, etc.

There is ONE LIMITATION. Advertisements about products which arise from network marketing arrangements are *not* allowed.

If adverts are deemed inappropriate, the list administrator will send the person a warning message. On the third warning message, the perpetrator will be unsubscribed from the list.

2.10 Foreign terms

We need to remember that eMSSA members study a range of styles, including those of Korean, Japanese and Chinese origins. Thus, althought you might be used to using the Japanese word for "roundhouse kick", keep in mind that many others will not understand this expression.

Thus, as far as possible, please try to use English expressions when referring to techniques, stances, or other.

3. Complaints Department

Greg is really a very friendly person -- he likes little furry animals and children (actually, he thinks they taste like chicken). He becomes less nice, though, if you expect too much from him. Please read the FAQ before you ask questions. Then, if you can't find the answer, send a message to him at to get human assistance.