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The Killies List
The Killies List

The first mailing list on the Internet about tropical fish, killies@mejac.palo-alto.ca.us was started in 1986 by Richard Sexton on Brian Reid's computer who both had something to do with the first Usenet tropical fish newsgroups. The original participants were Oleg Kiselev from Los Angeles, Gary Sutcliffe from Wisconsin then shortly after, Andrew Broome from New Zealand and Matt Kaufman from New Jersey. Within a year or so it took off. We'd been urging people at AKA meetings to use email and slowly killifans were getting online By 1989 were were regularly emailing killifans in the Netherlands and Germany and a few years later registered AKA.ORG for Harry Specht, the then president of the AKA. Some time later the AKA finally began an official mail list around the time the WWW exploded and then there were dozens of killifish web BBS fora.

Around late 1993 or early 1994 Matt Linderdorfer began making a "Killifish Information Center (KIC)" website but lost interest after about a year and gave it to me. I wrote software to write web pages and what you see here today is the result of one person in their part time.

These were more or less the dark ages because of dilution and it wasn't until around 2008 when Facebook became popular that killifans from all over the world from Huber to local hobbyist had a single global commons to communicate with. This may change but is very much true a decade later as I write this. One might perhaps argue this is social media in general and not Facebook per se and while that's true you don't seem scientists in the field send photos with snapchat because their phones all come with Facebook pre-installed and have for about 5 years.
Along the way the newsgroups alt.aquaria, alt.aquaria.killies and sci.aquaria were created to further discussion of killifish and in the early days of the web I also registered AKA.ORG domain name for Harry Specht on behalf of the American Killifish Association. For a while I ran websites for all of the killi clubs worldwide until they got up to speed on this newfangled web stuff and cold do it themselves.

Richard J. Sexton, 2019

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Richard J. Sexton