[Mailman-Users] MM lists on Gmane

Barry Warsaw barry at python.org
Sun Sep 17 17:36:49 CEST 2006

Hash: SHA1

Okay, first of all let's all take a deep breath.  This can be worked  

Let me state up front that my general preference is always to allow  
the widest possible access to the Mailman and Python lists, and in  
general to all open source content.  I think it only helps our users  
- -- and yes, ourselves -- if we actively strive to tear down barriers  
to participation rather than build them.  Sometimes things conspire  
against us, like abuse by spammers of completely open lists, or the  
impolite behavior of some participants.  We have an obligation to  
balance our defenses against those abuses with our overriding mission  
to open things up as much as possible.

Sorry to rant, and I don't want to get too political, but this really  
is a wider issue in our society.  I strongly believe that more  
openness is good.  Some can argue that there is a place for secrecy,  
but if so then it must be deliberately narrowed as much as possible.   
I can see no argument for closing avenues of information in an open  
source project.  For me, this is deeply personal because if it  
weren't for the kindness and support of my users, I wouldn't be doing  
this.  It ain't for the money, I can tell you that. :)  In return, we  
give our users software when we can, but more importantly (IMO), we  
give them a community to be part of, to help each other out when  
we're stressed or unavailable.  Without that, our support line gets  
overwhelmed with requests, and that support line for Mailman often  
devolves to my personal email address.  That is not a good thing. :)

So.  I don't know Lars personally though I've had a few email  
interactions with him.  I don't know how Gmane is managed or  
administered.  I only know that I use it occasionally and I've always  
found it a useful and reliable service.  When I need it, I'm really  
glad it's there.

If they have procedures for adding mailing lists, those procedures  
should be followed.  If they weren't in the Mailman and Python list  
cases, then they should be.  I have absolutely no reason to believe  
there's anything malicious or nefarious going on.  To the extent that  
there are problems in their procedures, I think it's more likely that  
newbies screwed up or that overworked volunteers simply forgot or  
took shortcuts.  Who among us can't sympathize with that?

If I was aware of such problems in the past, I honestly don't  
remember -- I'll place the blame squarely on my overloaded brain, and  
age. :)   Taking a fresh look at this, I say let's do what we can to  
get the lists on Gmane, including any back archives.

Jason, perhaps you can mediate here, since you seem to know both the  
Gmane and Mailman/Python organizations.  If the Gmane administrators  
make a formal request to the list owners of the Mailman and Python  
mailing lists that are missing, then my vote is to accept the offer,  
provide them with whatever they need, and get the newsgroups going.

- -Barry

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