I finally signed up for the Stained Glass Network ListServ. They describe it thus - "The Stained Glass Network on Architectural Stained Glass is a moderated internet discussion forum that will provide a worldwide exchange of information among individuals engaged in historic research, documentation, preservation, creation or restoration of architectural stained glass." You can sign up at this page.
I have been receiving emails for about a week now and I am impressed by the quality of the posts. The viewpoints and insights are top notch. I recommend it if you are interested in stained glass, especially if you are interested in the history and conservation of stained glass. I recommend it for any artists simply because there is no other place on the net where there is a comparable attempt at an online 'community' of stained glass professionals.
My only misgiving is in the form itself, the 'listserv'. This was the main reason I had hesitated to join before (this list began in October or November of 2003). I had belonged to 'email groups' before and the idea of receiving, reading, archiving (or not) and maintaining groups of emails is something I find cumbersome. It's only been one week and I've received more than 50 emails. I do not have the time on a regular basis to skim through these, let alone have the time to fully read or make my own comments.
So I can't help but think - Why couldn't this be done as a blog?
The advantages seem obvious to me -
All in one web-based design - Current posts, with an easily read thread of comments, plus an easily accessed archive, with topics threaded for easier reading. It could still be moderated and still be by subscription only.
There could be IMAGES, critical it seems to me for a forum about stained glass, and there could be live links to other websites of interest.
Just dreaming, for now - it would take a sponsor and a few people who are at least a little internet savvy to moderate.