Tips for newcomers to the rec.food.sourdough Usenet newsgroup...
1. Read some FAQs and lurk a while before you post.
2. The best way to get a sourdough culture is from a trusted source. Here are some mail order sources. Starting your own culture is a much more chance-ridden adventure. But if you want to try here is the best method of starting your own starter.
3. Many books describe a starter initiated from a small quantity of commercial (aka baker's) yeast. This is a useful and time-honored (sur poolisch in French, biga in Italian) method, but it isn't sourdough.
4. Trim irrelevant quoted text, neaten posts and replies by editing if possible.
5. Avoid "handles" and business names as return email addresses.
6. Most bread machines are designed for bakers' yeast and, among other problems, their rising cycles are too short for successful sourdough. The possible exceptions are user programmable bread machines such as the Zojirushi V20 or Breadman Ultimate.
7. Ignore nuisances and spammers. Filter repetitive nuisances. Posting to the group in reply to spammers, flamers and etiquette violators prolongs the agony and is unproductive.
8. Respect subtle differences between mentioning and touting, regarding your home page, your business, and your professional qualifications.
9. Your posts may provoke discussion, comment, criticism. Do not mistake criticism, however acerbic, for flaming.
10. The secret of baking with natural ferments is not recipes or rigid adherence to a scheme.The secret is to understand the principles at work. That is why the FAQ QA is your best guide to success
Sourdough FAQs|Darrell Greenwood's Home Page
Links changed to carlsfriends.net 10/8/16