[Mailman-Users] Hijacking threads and netiquette (was: e: Obscure addresses problem)

Brad Knowles brad at stop.mail-abuse.org
Tue Sep 5 22:27:00 CEST 2006

At 2:23 PM -0500 2006-09-05, David Dyer-Bennet wrote:

>  While I agree it's not a wonderful search term by virtue of being
>  relevant to a lot of different FAQs, it's the one people will be
>  looking for in this case; the problem is that their browser doesn't
>  offer to remember their password.

Unfortunately, with 25 different entries being returned matching the 
term "password", I fear that it is going to be difficult for most 
people to figure out which ones are or are not related to their 
particular question.  That's part of why I made a point of using the 
term "reauthentication" on one particular entry, and I've tried to 
describe the problems using as much of the same terminology as the 
person who initially brought the subject to my attention.

>                                                                      I
>  *did* search for "reauthentication", it's how I got to FAQ 4.65, which
>  I mention below.

I saw that later, but there was no clear indication that you had read 
both entries, and at that point I still had not received enough 
information from you to convince me that neither of these were 
actually related to the problem you were having.

>  My problem, as I have said from the beginning, is that browsers
>  (specifically Firefox, though I note the same problem reported against
>  Safari in feature request 966157) do not recognize the password field
>  on the mailing list administrator login page as a password field, and
>  hence do not offer to save it for me, and hence make it much, much
>  harder to deal with mailing list administration than it needs to be.

Which sounds to me pretty much exactly like the problems described in 
FAQ 4.64 and 4.45, namely that your password is not being saved and 
you keep being asked to re-enter it.  The precise mechanism of the 
failure may be different, but the high-level description is 
essentially the same.  We need some way to differentiate between the 
underlying problems, and it's still not clear to me what the real 
underlying problem is or how it should be fixed -- or even if we 
should try to fix it within the Mailman code.

>  I HAVE read the FAQ entries in question.  I don't want to change those
>  two, becaues they're not relevant to this issue (and presumably *are*
>  relevant to the issues they are addressing, so I shouldn't hijack
>  them).

Fair enough.  Then a new FAQ entry would be appropriate.

>  I wrote what would have been 3.67, only to then be told that it wasn't
>  actually open to anybody to post after all; so to keep that work from
>  going to waste I post it here, and propose it be included (or improved
>  and then included):

Look closely.  All the information you need is actually right there. 
You're asked for your full name, your e-mail address, and the 
password.  The password is actually given to you in multiple places, 
and is pretty obvious -- although I'm not going to explicitly mention 
it in this public forum.

With those three pieces of information, anyone can create a new FAQ 
entry or edit an existing one.  In fact, that's how I got involved in 
the Mailman project several years ago -- I installed Mailman at my 
site, I started seeing lots of common questions coming up on the 
list, and I started combing through all the FAQ entries.

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

  Founding Individual Sponsor of LOPSA.  See <http://www.lopsa.org/>.

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