AMS Forum at Humanities Commons

The Communications Committee of the American Musicological Society is pleased to announce the launch of the AMS Forum, a new web-based platform for online discussion. While the venerable AMS-L has served us well, we feel its 1990s-era Listserv technology has become cumbersome and less useful to most of the membership.

While at first the Forum and AMS-L will coexist, the AMS plans to phase out AMS-L and close it one year from now. AMS-L archives will remain available for members to consult. As with AMS-L, participation will not be limited to members of the AMS.

The Forum is part of the broader Humanities Commons (HC), an online community that is strong and full-featured. Established by the Modern Language Association, it hosts several academic societies in addition to the MLA, along with numerous less formally participating societies and working groups like the AMS. Joining the HC site will give our members access to capabilities beyond the Forum itself, including creating individual academic profiles (searchable by research interests) and a repository for open-access publication (the Common Open Repository Exchange, or CORE). These functions resemble the for-profit offerings of such sites as, but in an open-access, non-profit environment overseen by academics themselves. The goal of HC is to increase interchange among humanistic disciplines, and we believe its offerings are impressive and will be attractive to members. It promises to have staying power and the administrative support needed to make it useful for all those interested in the humanities.

How to Join

To join the Forum (and the other functions at HC), follow these instructions:

Posts to the Forum will not be monitored before appearing, but the Forum does have some simple guidelines for use (included below) that all participants are asked to follow. Users may notify the Forum moderator, forum-admin -at-, of any posts that appear to violate those guidelines. Noncompliant posts will be removed promptly. Until a regular moderator can be appointed, I will serve as in that capacity. We on the Communications Committee are very excited about this new format for discussion and exchange, and we hope you will explore it and give it a try.

Roger Freitas
Chair, AMS Communications Committee

AMS Forum Guidelines

The mission of the AMS Forum is to encourage

To enable that mission, the Forum adopts the following guidelines to be observed by all who participate:

1. All posts that initiate a thread must clearly state the issue or question to which the member wishes the community to respond, framing the issue so as to foster discussion.

2. Subsequent comments need to stick to the topic of the given thread. If the focus of a thread shifts from one topic to another, a new thread may be started.

3. Posts of a controversial nature are always welcome. The author of the post must be sensitive, however, to the interests and work of other list members whose efforts may be the subject of the controversy. In such posts, avoiding ad hominem discourse is critical.

4. Posts must adhere to standards of courteous professional discourse. Posts that include any of the following will be subject to removal:

5. Members may flag posts or comments that they consider inappropriate by emailing the Forum moderator ( Such posts will be reviewed by the moderator(s) and may be removed if the posts include anything proscribed in point 4 above.

6. Anyone who repeatedly violates the guidelines of the Forum, especially as regards inappropriate posts, will be subject to sanction as the moderators deem appropriate, up to and including a temporary or permanent ban from the site.

7. Appeals related to rejected threads, removed messages, or more serious sanctions are to be directed first to the moderating team. If the appealer remains unsatisfied, she/he may appeal further to the AMS Communications Committee, which will respond within two weeks. The decisions of the Communications Committee are final.

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