[Mailman-Developers] Configurability (was Re: [ANNOUNCE] Mailman 1.0b9)

J C Lawrence claw@kanga.nu
Wed, 03 Mar 1999 21:26:50 -0800

On Wed, 03 Mar 1999 11:34:20 -0800 
Greg Stein<gstein@lyra.org> wrote:

> You really should not keep dropping knobs onto Mailman. Look at the
> problem with the settings for "who can post to this list". LOTS of
> people have problems with getting that set up right. The problem?
> Too many knobs. "What do I set to do X?" is what happens.

The fault there is not in the feature set.  The fault is in the design
of the feature set.  I've been there.  You can do it in simple ways
(simpler than the current method) that communicate clearly and are
obvious to neophyte users:

  Who can subscribe?  (Anyone, moderator approved)

  Who can post? (Anyone, only subscribers, only nominated subscribers)

  What happens to unsubscribed posts?  (silently deleted, held for
    approval, bounced beck to sender with defined message).

You then need to make posting rights (ie bypassing moderation) an
attribute of the user account, modifiable only by the list owner (the
current list of approved addresses, which is not maintained against
accounts or unsubscriptions sucks).

> IMO, your real task is to *reduce* the knobs, not add more. You
> should figure out how to automatically figure some out, or how to
> combine them, or simply drop them for lack of utility.

Quite.  Presentation is also key.

J C Lawrence                              Internet: claw@kanga.nu
----------(*)                            Internet: coder@kanga.nu
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