[Mailman-Users] Subscription settings not taking

Brad Knowles brad at stop.mail-abuse.org
Wed Feb 15 18:18:32 CET 2006

At 5:35 AM -0800 2006-02-15, Beartooth wrote:

>   	Yes. As you doubtless know, they accept nominations from
>  anyone, but ask the nominator to refrain except with permission of the
>  list; iirc, they used to check, too, but it's been quite a while.

	Therein lies the problem.  Whomever nominated these mailing lists 
didn't get our permission, and Gmane didn't check.  We've had this 
problem in the past.

	In my book, they're skating the thin edge of being a spamming 
operation themselves, or at least being a spam facilitator.  However, 
we (the postmasters of python.org) acknowledge that not everyone will 
feel the same way about them, and we allow each of the sets of owners 
of each list to set their own policies with regards to Gmane.

	In this case, I am part of the python.org postmaster team, as 
well as one of the list owners of the mailman-users and 
mailman-developers lists (among others).

>                                                                     They
>  do certainly still run a panoply of spam defenses.

	I'm not so concerned about the defenses that they may (or may 
not) have in place today, I'm more concerned about whether or not 
they have followed the appropriate procedures and checked with the 
appropriate people, before setting up their gateway service.

	As we know, once something is in place, it's easy for people to 
change their policies with regards to what they do with what they now 
have.  And once things escape, it's really hard to put that genie 
back in the bottle.

>   	One effect will be to drive me, and doubtless some rising
>  number of others, as baby boomers retire and get into other
>  activities, off your lists. Gmane's great virtue is that it's a lot
>  simpler to monitor than trying to cope with list archives; one can
>  check occasionally for anything that looks comprehensible, delete the
>  rest unread, and gradually acquire enough competence, or at least
>  enough vocabulary, to ask what one needs. Having done so, one can flag
>  one's own post, and watch for replies.

	I've been using USENET news for about twenty years, and 
administering it for nearly ten years.  I've been using Internet 
e-mail and mailing lists for about twenty years, and I've been 
administering Internet e-mail and mailing lists for about fifteen 
years -- including what were, at the time, some of the world's 
largest mailing lists at AOL, using the L-Soft ListServ software.

	I know the differences and the advantages, and I personally don't 
see much value in gatewaying a mailing list like this to USENET. 
There are other Python-related mailing lists which have been 
gatewayed to USENET for many years, and I'm glad to continue to 
support that.  But I don't personally see much value in it -- hardly 
anyone on the Internet knows what USENET news is, and when you say 
"news" to them, they think Google News, or somesuch.

	One critical problem with USENET news is that stuff expires off 
the server, and you miss messages that are no longer stored locally. 
Then there are cancel and posting storms, which frequently amounts to 
a DoS attack on the entire USENET network.  And very few USENET news 
clients are any good at handling large volumes of traffic.

	An e-mail archive doesn't have any of these problems.

>   	And with that I'll stop bothering you. No reply required
>  unless you should embrace some less draconian choice. Strength to your
>  arms! It's a fine listserver, and of course that comes first.

	I'll talk to Barry and the other python.org 
postmasters/listowners of these mailing lists, and see if I am 
mis-remembering things, and whether or not we want to ban Gmane from 
gatewaying any of our lists.

	I know what my own personal views are, but if they conflict with 
Barry's views or the views of the other postmasters/listowners, then 
I'm fine with following whatever the consensus policy is.

Brad Knowles, <brad at stop.mail-abuse.org>

"Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little
temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety."

     -- Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), reply of the Pennsylvania
     Assembly to the Governor, November 11, 1755

  LOPSA member since December 2005.  See <http://www.lopsa.org/>.

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