[Mailman-Users] Feature Request: Selective Mass Subscription

Brad Knowles brad at shub-internet.org
Thu Jul 10 22:30:37 CEST 2008

Larry Stone wrote:

> Brad, I'm glad you added that. But it raises an interesting topic of
> discussion which is why is e-mail held to a different standard than
> other means of communication.

This is a lot like another case where there is only harm perceived when 
someone claims that they've been harmed, such as sexual harassment at work.

There are one category of things that pretty much everyone can agree to as 
being wrong, and another category of things about which there may be quite a 
bit of disagreement.

At the end of the day, it's not really sexual harassment until the person on 
the receiving end says it is.

Spam is much the same.  So, until someone complains, you're fine.  But even 
if you've operated the most scrupulous system that you can possibly do, as 
soon as you get that complaint then you've got a problem.

In the anti-spam community, over time we have developed some standards by 
which we say that everyone should operate, and if you can "prove" that you 
do that, then pretty much by definition you are not a spammer.

There are plenty of others who are not spammers but who do not operate by 
these rules, and until such time as there is a complaint against them, 
they're probably okay.  But then there are also a lot of shady characters 
who intentionally shave close to that line, and what should we do about them?

It's the combination of that massive amount of grey area, and potential for 
abuse throughout the grey area, that causes the problems.

In order to try to avoid any appearance of impropriety, we set much higher 
standards so as to try to completely avoid even getting close to the grey area.

At least, that's my personal view.

Brad Knowles <brad at shub-internet.org>
LinkedIn Profile: <http://tinyurl.com/y8kpxu>

More information about the Mailman-Users mailing list