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Killfile (also "Kill File") is a term used on Usenet.

It was a way for fans (or anyone else) to block messages from their newsreader before these messages ever entered their personal mailbox.

Killfile could be created that discarded articles matching unwanted patterns of subject, a specific sender, other header lines.

The term could also be used in conversation to describe one's intent to ignore another fan or topic.

See Kill file at Wikipedia.

Examples of Use


As stated above, this group is primarily for the discussion of the world of Pern -- discussion of Ms. McCaffrey's other works is not unwelcome, but the emphasis is on Pern. (See section 1d: "Why '' and not ''?" for more on this.) A component of this discussion revolves around the various multi-user programs that have been set up attempting to simulate Pern. One of The more frequntly discussed is 'PernMUSH', although there are many others in existence. Articles about PernMUSH or the other Pern-related simulations should have 'PernMUSH' or 'MUSH' or something similar in the subject line so that those who are not interested can filter them out via KILLfile. [1]


I was rummaging through my trash file last night, and I came upon several ASCEM posts that my vicious trained killfile had mistaken for spam (for various reasons, but the predominant one was the presence of the word "fuck" in the subject line--c'mon people, doesn't *anyone* read the FAQ? :::Alexas looks sternly around the group for a moment:::) [2]

If the category says MSR, I generally hit kill, but not always. If it says MSR and NC-17, I generally, but not always, kill it. If it says slash and NC-17, I generally, but not always, kill it. For those three types, I read the first few paragraphs before deciding. If it says XA or some similar combination, I'll give it a few paragraphs. Now, I cheerfully confess that I read even more quickly than I write, so that's not a great deal of time investment for me. Especially of late. [3]

1999 "delete" function works just fine, as does my killfile. And in general, when it comes to issues of genre, I agree it's pretty silly to read a type of story you know you won't like and then complain about it (and I'm speaking here of aesthetics, not moral or ethical issues). [4]


Oh, lovely. Just lovely. Now, let me see: I could quit reading anything written by any member of a large and rather talented group of authors, because a couple of people have made unsubstantiated allegations against one or two members of that group, thus somehow rendering the entire group guilty. Or I could add one more name to my "rabid loonies" killfile. Gee, what a tough dilemma. I may need a while to think about this one. Becky C., whose killfile used to be totally empty.[5]

think of a killfile as a very, very deep well in which you're tossing the person or persons you no longer wish to read. [6]

Killfiles work. Learn to use them.

Kill files are great if you have a mailer that can do them. Me, I just sort by name and delete. Does well except for those people who post from alt.s... or similar.

Also, it does NOT work when people switch email names, addresses, etc to trick us. It's also no help when people we want to read respond to those we don't. for example, I'd never killfile MaryEllen, but if she responds to Jane Doe, I get that message to go through.

Basically, a troll can do wonders with out much hard work. [7]

Killfiles make me happy. Gamin Davis and Laura Goodwin live in mine, and I am thereby much happier in my day-to-day life. I shan't prevent them from saying anything they want--but I can sure as hell prevent them from saying it to *me*. That, in my opinion, is the only way to handle situations like this: get them off your *own* back, and get on with life.

If you don't have a killfile (one of my mailreaders doesn't), you can usually search for anything from that person and just delete those messages unread. A little more work, but worth it, if they bother you that much.

Incidentally, I don't killfile people for writing bad fiction. I killfile them for being poorly behaved. (In Gamin's case, it was her extremely rude argument style; in Laura G's, it was the sock puppetry. If either of them wish to discuss this with me, they can send me personal email. I only have their newsgroup and mailing list posts killed.) [8]


... use a killfile. Because in reality, that's your only option. You can't stop someone from posting to this newsgroup, you can only choose not to read it. [9]


Back then, it would never have occurred to me to even *try* to impose my taboos on other people, or, in a way, that it was a desirable idea. Moderated newsgroups often die the death compared to their unmoderated kin. On Usenet, there are two sanctions available: avoid the newsgroups where there is nothing interesting visible among the steaming piles of pixels, and killfile individual users or threads. [10]


  1. ^ from
  2. ^ My apologies (April 30, 1998)
  3. ^ comment at Why no summaries? (~ April 21, 1998)
  4. ^ from Winston Was Right by Lucy Gillam (June 6, 1999)
  5. ^ winged ,, comment about the X-Files story Arizona Highways (September 2000)
  6. ^ Musings on killfiles. Warning- godawful ASCII art. (January 2, 2000)
  7. ^ I'm finally going to say it. (September 24, 2000)
  8. ^ I'm finally going to say it. (September 24, 2000)
  9. ^ comments at XFC content changes (~ July 27, 2001)
  10. ^ comment by Julad at The end of taboo (February 18, 2003)