Hi! Welcome to WebmasterWorld and to the forum for European Search Engines.
An introduction to Webmaster World for newcomers:
WebmasterWorld is a forum for webmasters, open to the whole world. Americans are probably still in majority, but not for long. Thousands of Europeans come here every month, and many of them participate in the discussions. As you can see, the board is free from advertising and depends entirely on voluntary efforts by moderators and visitors, who share their knowledge and get some more in return.
On the main page, you will find 24 major departments, each covering an area of interest to webmasters. Focus is on those enigmatic contraptions known as search engines. Inside each of these discussions are hundreds or thousands of messages, which together could fill several books. If you read them all, you will gain knowledge at expert level.
The discussions are monitored by a bunch of very friendly moderators, whose names appear all over the place: Air, Brett_Tabke, DaveAtIFG, drBill, engine, grnidone, littleman, NFFC, oilman, oldtimer, rcjordan, rencke, seth_wilde, stcrim and tedster. Four of us are from Europe (engine, NFFC, oldtimer and myself) and one from the vast empty wilderness of Canada, oilman, where he has to run his bike an hour a day just to charge the batteries that make his PC run. The rest are Americans, like Brett_Tabke, the #1 Guru at WebmasterWorld and also the owner of this site and SearchEngineWorld [searchengineworld.com] - a very useful place for webmasters.
It is our job to make sure that questions do not go unanswered for too long and to make you feel at home. And to gently remind you of the ground rules:
Ground rule #1: Foul language.
American children are very sensitive, so an automatic filter has been installed to protect them from colorful expressions such as ****, ****, and ****. (See! It works!) If you don't believe me, try to type the name of the first man to sign the American Declaration of Independence in 1775 - John Han****.
Clever Europeans might want to bypass this by using foul European language, such as "Deine ver******* *******" in German or "******" in French or "******* ruotsalainen" (at me) in Finnish. It is my sad duty to censor such expressions manually, using my trusted old "Dictionary of Foul European Language." If you must use colorful language, then please use asterisks. To write “******” can be quite expressive, you know.
Ground rule #2: Slander and defamation.
Slander is forbidden. You should not write things like "Micro**** sucks" or "Apple is a piece of *****" even if your microwave refuses to re-heat your pizza and apples are indeed fruit. I shall be there with my little scissors and <snip>! If you need more detailed rules, just click "Disclaimer" at the top of this page.
Ground rule #3: Promotion.
This bulletin board is here as a forum for the exchange of ideas and knowledge. Not as a free billboard for commercial stuff. Placing an url to a site where you sell your services is generally not allowed. There will be one exception, and that is in the European country listings, where we will list people who can do translations and give SEO help locally. (SEO = Search Engine Optimization.)
Ground rule #4: Do not apologize for your English.
Europeans often start by apologizing for their poor English when they post messages here at WebmasterWorld. This is strictly forbidden! Most Americans or British will not apologize to you because they don’t speak your language. So why should you apologize to them? If you absolutely feel that you must apologize all the time, then you may apologize to me for not speaking Swedish. That is nothing that I expect and it will earn you a reputation as being very excentric. ;)
WebmasterWorld has English as the common language. One reason is that some of the world's leading experts understand no other language. If you write German, French, Italian, Spanish or Portuguese better than English, then you can easily translate your messages into English at www.world.altavista.com [world.altavista.com] and paste it into the reply box. The translation will be quite good, if you write full sentences and avoid slang or idioms specific to your own language.
Some useful features of WebmasterWorld:
Automatic Email Notification: If you start a new discussion or reply to a message, you can click in a box to get an automatic alert by e-mail when there is a reply. The same goes for entire fora. Example: If you would like to know about all new discussions for AltaVista, all you have to do is to place yourself on that page and click "Email Notification". Also a very useful thing.
Sticky Mail: A very nifty local e-mail system is in place, called Sticky Mail. You can use it to send private messages to other members of WebmasterWorld.
Recent posts: You will find this at the top of every page, and it shows all the new post going into the discussions. So you don't have to run around all over the place to search for what's new. It will refresh automatically every minute or so.
Search: If you are looking for something in particular, then you can use the built in search engine. It is a little slow, but it works.
How to control what is shown: At the bottom of the main pages for each department, you will find a listbox. It controls how many discussions that are shown. Since this forum will contain a large number of discussions, that are likely to go on for a year or more, you may find it useful to select "All" in that box.
Reset Last Read Pointer: This is a useful feature that helps you to remember what you have already read and what there is left to read. The first time you visit one of the department, little red balls will be shown next to the discussions. When you have read everything that interests you, click on "Reset Last read pointer" and they will disappear. When something new is posted, they will reappear again - just for you.
Flags: This is a very handy local bookmark system. If you find a particularly interesting discussion, you can click "dropflag" at the top and bottom of every discussion. This will copy the address into your personal file of flags and you can then view them by clicking "flags" at the top of the page and also bookmark your flags page in your own browser.
A few words about the near future:
From the middle of October 2000 you will find separate discussion threads here for almost all European countries. The plan is to collect and chart the unknown territory of European Search Engines. Every little piece of information is useful towards laying this big puzzle and I hope that all Europeans will join in this effort. To get things started, there will be basic country facts and a list of search engines already from the beginning.
A little bit later on, I will start publishing a series of Search Engine lessons - articles aimed at beginners and covering the basics of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). This field of science is not well known in Europe, so the articles will hopefully fill a growing need.
If you have any questions about WebmasterWorld or this forum or whatever, this is a good place to ask them. Just hit the reply button below.
I hope you will like this forum.
Your Swedish moderator.