|[This website is a relic from 1997 when the world was young and therefore contains a myriad of broken links, hilarious formatting, and stuff that doesn't work. Like the mailing list it still supports, it represents music on the Internet before big corporations took over. Sinister is still alive, you can join, post, and even read the archives from a decade ago, and its history is related in several books. Go here for how to actually use it now.]
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Hello to our latest new list member
"Can you transfer my email address please?"
"Can you remove/change my mails in the archive?"
The information here isn't supposed to provide much about the band themselves, and will never become a fully-fledged WWW resource on Belle and Sebastian - see the other pages listed below for that. This is a set of frequently asked questions for the band regularly posted to the list, and there's a separate one available on the Jeepster site. There is also a mailing list archive, and a "Frequently Asked Questions" for use of the mailing list itself which all subscribers must read (in particular the list rules). Finally there's a guitar tab selection from submissions to the list and elsewhere. And other stuff.
Here's the quick answer: send a message to
with the text "
subscribe sinister" in the body of the message.
That's it - you should get a confirmation email. But please read
the information below when you get a minute (a copy will be sent to you
when you subscribe). Plus if you're joining for the first time your
name goes up in lights at the top of this page! Until someone else
Please note this statement about the responsibility for content you send to or read on the list. In signing up to the list and remaining on the list your agreement to this is assumed. It's sent to you when you subscribe.
To unsubscribe from the list, you need to send
the command "
unsubscribe sinister" to
in the body of the message (not the subject). Remember if you are on the
digest (see explanation)
then you need to send the command "
For help unsubscribing see the FAQ.
Sending unsubscribe messages to the list itself is a sin on about the same
level as goosing
New subscribers to the list won't be able to send mails to the list at once, but will have to wait just a little while before they can. This is so that newcomers get a feel for list content, look through the archives and information on these WWW pages and soak up the list atmosphere before taking part. For more details see the nursery section in the FAQ. If you think this is a bit harsh, please remember, Sinister Likes New People, and your list mummy loves everyone one of you. She's just trying to keep things sane.
After you've received a mail saying you're now allowed to post to the list,
you just send mail to
email@example.com. But remember
you have to join up and wait a little while first.
If you change email addresses, try and unsubscribe before you close your old account. I don't move addresses for you, you do it yourself, see the relevant section in the FAQ.
You can see individual email address of all members of the list, main list members marked (S) and digest members (D). Those who have joined the list recently, and who are still awaiting a voice to post in the nursery (you patient souls) are marked with a (N) - when your name loses its N, you will be able to send mail. You can also see separate lists of who's on the main list, the digest and the nursery.
You can also search for an email address on the list if you know part of it - useful if you want to check your subscription.
There's a big spread of people who listen to Belle and Sebastian from all over the world represented on the list: you can also see who's subscribing from where by looking at the spread across domains. Pretty soon I'll break it all down by shoe size too.
Having trouble getting mails from the list? Please see the section in the FAQ for help first. When you've gone through all the suggestions there and still can't get anything working and are crying your eyes out and need a shoulder, contact the list owner. But if you're just being lazy and not doing your homework, I might tell your mum.
You can search and browse all mails ever sent to the mailing list, or see the latest posts to the list in date order, newest at the top. You can also see posts ordered by subject which some find easier to read. You can search the list using the search box at the top of this list (in which you'll find some cheeky "suggested searches") or more comprehensively using this link.
If for some reason the archives get stuffed, you can see them at the old backup archive site still kindly provided by www.mail-archive.com. These are split across two archives just now - pre-2003 and post-2003.
I've collected some stuff from postings to the list below too.
All subscribers to the list must read the list of "Frequently Asked Questions" at the link below - this is to ensure the list remains what the majority of people want it to be and unnecessary repetitions are avoided to keep the noise level down. It'll also mean you don't get growled at.
Remember this is a list of questions for using the list. A list of frequently asked questions for Belle and Sebastian themselves can be found at the Jeepster Site here.
Other B&S-ish sites you might be interested in:
Other places where you can shout at Belle and Sebastian lovers:
Sites by people on the list doing list type things:
The best websites in the world:
Some sites you might be interested in:
Some sites you definitely won't be interested in:
There's plenty of stuff posted to the list that disappears into the archives: so I've pulled some of it out here for interest.
Here's some photos of people from the list who are trying to pull. You can see either pictures As We Are Now or much more interesting As We Were.
There's also a page of Things We Made In School Today, Mummy, just so you can get that kiss on the forehead and gold star. And a page of Sinister picnics, pubs and conferences and B&S concerts, photos, drawings and anything you can steal. Also, anyone who mentions a part of their body on the list is now obliged to send a fuzzy and faintly rude photo of that bodypart for inclusion in the Sinister Body Parts page, strictly anonymously of course. Finally, Sinistereen Miss Scarlet asked if we could have a clothing gallery. Go and see Miss Scarlet and Miss Honey's Haute Couture Fashion Boutique.
So if you want a sinister date yourself, or want to someone your eyebrows or undies, send your pictures to me, not the list, JPG format please. And send some text if you want that to go with them. Please remember to tell me what you want them called (no spaces or funny characters, see the existing names) and please remember to check their size on the screen, that they're cropped correctly, the right way round etc.
For aeons there's been an IRC room/channel for people on the list where you can meet and generally go on the pick-up with other list members. Everyone should try it. You don't even need to use special software unless you're hardcore, although it's advised when you're used to it: but you can access it quickly via the web without even registering, it's easy to use and you can even use rude words there. The band have been known to pop in (um, years ago), and an organised chat was done with them a long ago, before everyone started doing them: see below for the embarrassing log from when the world was young.
To give it a go quickly yourself, or if you can't install your own mIRC/xchat/whatever irc chat program, you can access the chatroom via http://www.undernet.org/webchat.php. Enter a nickname (anything you like, preferable obscure or smutty) in the "Nickname" box, and another in case it's taken, "#sinister" in the "Your Favorite Channel" box and "Another Canal" under "Channel". Then click on "Connect", wait a bit and type "Accept" if a box pops up. If you see a list of people on the right hand side, bingo, you're home and dry. If it says something about failing to connect, hit back and select another "Server" until you get in.
The people in the chatroom are on the right hand side of the screen. Just say "hi I'm new, and Honey sent me to say hello". Ignore the aunts and uncles there, they're just there to protect you, although you could have a chat with auntsadie who's very talkative, although a little odd. Just prefix questions to her with "auntsadie, ..." and she's likely to reply. You can ask her about people and things with "auntsadie, who is..." or "auntsadie, what is...". Please don't be offended if she's rude - it's the fault of 7 years worth of channel users teaching her bad language and poor table manners.
If you don't see anyone real in there at first, hang around - someone's bound to be along in a minute, like how buses used to be.
Webchat programs can be a bit of a pain, so when you've decided you want to stay, to use the room more easily you should download an IRC chat program, such as mIRC (for Windows), xchat (for Linux and Windows) and I'm sure others can advise for Macs. Once installed, select any "Undernet" server and connect - in most cases, if it's there, choose the option "Random EU Server" or "Random US Server" depending on where you are. Then just type /join #sinister and you'll enter the room.
Please remember that tarting around is strictly forbidden unless you really can't help it.
There was a chat with the band on Thursday 12th March 1998 before any of us were famous or webchats had really even been invented; here's a chaotic log of the chat.
26/02/00 New gallery! Get your togs on.
28/03/00 More Lonely Lyrics Without A Home from Nick Dastoor. Recommended reading for scholars.
31/03/00 Changing or changed email addresses? See how to do it yourself.
05/04/00 Mobile Haiku page now working again - why didn't anyone tell me it wasn't? Because you don't want to make me look any more stupid than I do, that's why.
16/05/00 The search now works when you select individual months. Again.
09/06/00 More chord tabs up for the new LP. Visit the new improved B&S Song Generator and hear Splat sing. Kevan, she won't forget you when she's famous, she says.
04/08/00 Sinister WAP WAP?
21/08/00 Eclectia: Have you seen my funnel?, Some rubbish photos of The Magnetic Fields.
05/09/00 Rumours of my death greatly exaggerated. Search now souped up and much easier to use - it fixes your mistakes, and tells you what to do. If you haven't got much from it before, try it again now. Archives now generalised for other lists at missprint.org. Now also available a search across all music lists hosted here. If you know someone with a music list who's sick of adverts and may want to move to missprint.org, or just an external list they may want archiving, please direct them to [getalist]. Miss Print, who bears a distinct resemblance to Honey, will be grateful to you for helping share out the cost a bit.
12/08/00 Sinister WAP WAP WAP (click [here] if you're really brave).
05/10/00 Eeek! IRC chatters only, nominate ops.
20/10/00 The results of Carsmile Steve's "Paint a Picture of Belle & Sebastian on Top Of The Pops" Competition!.
27/10/00 Want to see what our friends on the little brother Spanish list are saying but like me can't speak Spanish? Hop along to the local archive of segundosdeluz list and click on "Translate" to read a ridiculously garbled version that may amuse you.
23/11/00 Promptly as ever, the people who sent in guitar chords/tabs for Fold Your Wotsit You Look Like a Thingummy will be pleased to know they're finally online, thanks to Mr Damon Sinister Enforcer Sir. Pop over to [the chords page] and have a bit of a strum.
17/01/01 Grrrrr junk email, grr grr GRR!
22/01/01 Grrrrr [more junk email]! Some people aren't happy, so I'm afraid this means the [list membership lists] are offline and the [email search form] has had to be better protected, which, you know, is work. Would the culprit listee please own up, *thwack*.
26/01/01 Excuse: some minor B&S content: Splatattack!
29/01/01 Re-grrrr [#1] and [#2].
11/02/01 OK, so I still haven't organized them properly but.. SILLUSTRATIONS!
10/04/01 Grrrr Revisted: "Diary of a Reluctant Spammer"; lots and lots more photos.
26/04/01 AOL version 6 users: new links to information on posting in plain text here.
23/07/01 The archives and photos are currently offline due to hard disk failure at nodata.org. This makes me sadder than you :( If you need to read the list, join. Sorry, and I'll fix it when I can, but it's a lot of work even when the disk space is restored. None of the old mails are lost. Honey Explains.
26/07/01 The archives for this year have been restored, and all four years' archives will be restored when replacement disk space is installed. Searching the archives currently hovers in a mystical suspended state between working and not. Photos are.. on the way. Most importantly, sillustrations are back with new additions. Honey x
20/09/01 The photo galleries have been restored to their former glory thanks to a disk restore, as have all 4 years' archives - but don't expect searching the archives to work for a little bit yet. I'll be adding the photos I've received since the problem occured... slowly.
29/10/01 The search engine is now finally fixed and up to date so you can search all four and a half years' of sinister archives for reviews, classic sinister posts and embarrassing things you said ages ago.
12/02/02 Added 50 or so photos sent to me some time in the last year.
01/07/02 How To Unsubscribe Gracefully
27/08/02 Happy 5th Birthday Sinister
10/10/02 The site that kindly hosts the archives and photo galleries seems to have got ill, or bad-tempered, and they're offline for now. Sorry. When I understand why, I'll fix it.. somehow.
12/10/02 The aforementioned site is certainly having problems and the poor site owner a bit beleagured. Archives/galleries appear to be back just now, but I'm trying to find out if they'll stay so, or if I'll have to move them, in which case expect a break in transmission. Miss Print.
15/10/02 OK, the archives are out of date. Still waiting to hear from the other end, which isn't accepting mail for me. Sorry.
23/10/02 The archives, photo galleries and auntsadie have been moved to a new server, and so in the next day or so you should see an up to date list of latest messages as the records swap over to the new home. Inevitably dizzy Miss Print will have got something wrong in the transfer (it's a different operating system and she had to write new stuff), so please could you let her know when you find some broken stuff?
7/12/2 The Sinister WAP Site was down for ages, but because no-one uses WAP, no-one told me. So, for my own benefit: it's back.
24/10/3 After a year, the return of Sillustrations.
10/7/5 The archives and photos have been take offline for a little while, as it appears the UK press have been using information to profit from tragedy. They'll be back online soon. Please remember all post content and photos remain the copyright of the individual, and permission must be sought before re-using them.
25/7/5 The archives are back online now. I'll leave the photos offline for a little longer just in case.
18/8/5 Photos back. Link to Stuart David's new Ink Polaroids site.
23/8/5 After endless trouble with my own hosting provider misclassifying me as a spammer, it appears that AOL is now doing something similar, which may (or may not) block all sinister mails to AOL users. I'm not going to mail the list about this, because I'm sure everyone's sick and tired of it. I'm trying to establish contact with AOL to discuss the misclassification, but I find it unlikely any AOL subscribers have marked mail from the list (which they opted for) as spam. Therefore, if you're an AOL subscriber and don't receive mail clearly visible in the online archive, please do two things: (1) let me know - bear in mind AOL may block my reply, and (2) mail AOL and tell them you wish to receive mails from missprint.org, and why am I "listed in SCOMP" when I'm clearly an opt-in mailing list - tell them I've applied for whitelisting but you aren't receiving mail and are unhappy. Your mails as customers will probably carry more weight than mine. Finally, if AOL don't respond, all I can suggest is you switch ISPs, or use a reputable webmail host for subscriptions, such as gmail.com.
23/8/5 Update: contrary to expectations, I've been assured by my hosting company that AOL's blacklisting is because AOL customers have hit the button reporting Sinister mail as spam. This penalises all users of the list. If you are an AOL customer, and for some reason you've hit the "Spam" button on a Sinister mail, I'd ask you to fess up to me now please: you're breaking the list. And please mail AOL instantly, and say it was by mistake, and that the host missprint.org has never sent you spam. You're putting the existence of the list in very serious jeopardy if you ever press that idiot AOL button, and causing me heartache. My provider has recommended I remove all 94 AOL users from the list to protect myself against this - I won't do it yet, as it seems unfair. But may have to if this keeps happening. Please urgently read the document here that you should have received to find out how to stay on the list.
24/8/5 Right. Two AOL users are persistently reporting Sinister emails as spam, and because of my hosting company, it's breaking the whole list. I've been playing cat 'n' mouse all day trying to keep the list going through these blocks and I can't anymore. I have headers from those who are doing it, and hope to find out who. Thank you to those who responded to my mail to AOL users - I've had to remove all other AOL users from the list. I'd like to have waited two weeks, but I can't - the list's repeatedly breaking because of AOL's willingness to trust any of their own users who mark mail as spam, rather than actually scan the content and see it isn't. If you're an AOL user who read this too late, you can re-subscribe - but if this doesn't remove the problem, I, like many other mailing list maintainers, will have to ban AOL addresses from the list, possibly without being able to warn you. I **strongly** advise all AOL users to change ISPs now, or use webmail for your Sinister subscription. You'll miss mails to the list, due to actions of AOL. I've added a mail you should have received to the document above - please read. Complain to AOL. Sorry.
29/8/5 AOL's again blocking mails, but my hosting provider currently isn't. This may be because AOL are so slow at responding that they're blocking due to erroneous complaints before the purge above. Dunno. But just to inform all those still subscribed via AOL accounts: you are now missing mails. This applies to cs.com users also, who must be part of AOL. Secondly, let me withdraw the recommendation to move to a hotmail account: they'll be blocking from November onwards for similarly ridiculous reasons. This will also apply to MSN users: google for "Sender ID" for details. I'd suggest deserting AOL, hotmail, and MSN for your local ISP mail account: Gmail at a push. If these are blocks due to new AOL complaints, I'll have to remove all AOL accounts from the list - sorry.
3rd October 2005 Ladies and Gentlemen, we are moving homes to a new hosting server that doesn't think we're a spammer (see above!). It may be bumpy for the next week: please let me know if you see problems anywhere. Read here about the Great Sinister Bump for tedious details.
Oh, and updated all the galleries with pictures from as far back as 2002. It's all very embarrassing.
Also featuring! New date format above for international viewers. Until a few years ago, I thought everyone said "day/month/year". You do all drive on the left still though, don't you?
4th October 2005 Lyrics Pages updated from list archives with unreleased John Peel song lyrics, with miraculous technique.
14th December 2005 The web archive of posts to the list is down, as you'll have noticed: the machine that's been hosting them for years has finally given up the ghost, and appears unrecoverable. I've not been able to move to the new planned hosting server yet, but I'll try and at least tape something up badly when I can. Sorry to people who are used to reading via the web - you'll have to subscribe for a bit. Subscribing to the digest version is pretty light on your mailbox.
29th April 2008 Whoa! 36 months on, I'm back! Sinister's domain died a death in February and I didn't notice for ages, and then did a mass panic move to a new server. I don't really know what's working. But it appears to be limping along. Also (gasp) contrary to popular belief, the archives never did get lost, they were just sleeping and I've cobbled them together on this new server. They don't auto-update, search is broken right now, but they exist for historians in 2020 to chart what music on the net was like in 1997. Same rules as ever apply, no I won't remove your embarrassing postings from 1999. You read the FAQ then and that was the score. Besides I don't know how! Mwahahaha.
Please send me your comments on these pages or the mailing list. It'll only take a minute I promise. I'm here to listen to what members of the list want, and to receive gratuitous compliments or insults about how these pages look and what they contain. Please tell me if you think the list is going badly or well - it's nice to get comments so that I know this is worthwhile and I don't go off in a sulk. I promise I'll never hand out details of your own comments to anyone else (except solicitors) - they're just for my own sake to keep the list how people want it. But I do need participation to keep the list how you like it.
Uhh... spam. Disabled!
Finally remember if you get really stuck with the list, have any other comments or just want to tell me you're in love, mail me at:
If that doesn't work, better find a priest.
Brewing up date: 24th August 1997
Cartoons from "The
Story Of Sebastian"
© Laura Molloy
used by permission, and animated by Honey
Please do not use content from this WWW
site, or messages or
parts of messages from
this list for third-party publications (including WWW) without prior permission.
© 1997-2005 Sinister