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On Mon, Jul 08, 2019 at 03:27:50PM -0400, Jonathan Goble wrote:
(I don't know the best list to post this to, so if this is not it, please forgive me and point me in the right direction. Thanks.)
So my inbox, and probably many of yours, was flooded this afternoon with a dozen-plus emails from the Python-Announce list. I understand that this list requires every email to be manually approved by a moderator. The problem is that this is done infrequently. Prior to today, the last round of approvals was June 26, almost two weeks ago. This is not an atypical delay; on the contrary, it seems that moderators only look at the queue once every one to two weeks.
There are several problems with these delays:
They result in floods of emails, with a large number of emails in a short period of time. This makes inbox management difficult on the days that approvals are done. Before you argue that "it's fine if you have the right tools configured in the right way", consider that there are probably many people who are subscribed to Python-Announce who have no interest in and are not subscribed to any of the actual discussion lists where such tools are most beneficial. Complex tool configurations should not be a requirement for managing incoming emails from what is essentially (to those people) a notification-only mailing list. These people would be better served by frequent approvals several times a week, allowing them to get fewer emails at one time, but in a more timely manner.
Speaking of a more timely manner, the lengthy delays result in redundant and outdated emails going through after the point where they are no longer relevant. One such issue exemplified by today's set of approvals (and seen on previous occasions before) is an announcement of a new release of a PyPI package not being approved until after there has already been a subsequent release to that same package. In this case I am referring to the pytest 5.0.0 announcement sent to the list on June 28 (according to the headers), followed by the pytest 5.0.1 announcement sent to the list on July 5. Neither was approved and delivered to subscribers until today.
More importantly in terms of delays, on July 3 an announcement was sent to the list regarding the impending switch of EuroPython ticket rates to the late registration rate on July 6. This is an example of a time-sensitive announcement that needs to not be delayed. Instead, the email was not approved and delivered to subscribers until today, July 8, after the conference has already begun, and not in time for list subscribers to react and avoid the late registration rates.
Is there a solution to this that would enable moderators to approve more frequently? I understand that they are probably volunteers and need to find spare time to wade through the queue, but if approvals are done more frequently (even daily), then it will consume much less time on each occasion. It would go from a task requiring an entire hour (as it apparently did today based on the delivery timestamps) to something that can be done on a coffee break.
I already help moderate python-ideas and would be happy to help moderate announce.
C. Titus Brown, firstname.lastname@example.org