[Mailman-Users] Feature Request: Selective Mass Subscription

Krystal Zipfel zipfel at greenacrestechnology.com
Tue Jun 24 23:41:15 CEST 2008


Let me first say I was in no way competing with Cyndi's suggestion, I 
should probably have prefaced by saying I think the option provided is a 
good one. And again, we have no modifications to Mailman that is not 
built in to modify (we have turned off personalization for example, but 
no code modifications).

Double Opt-In is simply that the user stated twice that they want to 
subscribe to the list. In Mailman's option, Double Opt-In would be 
'Confirm'. Basically, it forces the subscriber to say "yes I want on 
this list", and then say "yes, I really really really do want to be on 
this list".

This way, if someone like say, Spam Arrest contacts us and says "we have 
X spam complaint", we can contact the user and say "what's up", and they 
say "here's when the user subscribed, here's when they said yea I really 
want that", and now Spam Arrest leaves us alone and the list is not 

It's one of those double edged swords. In our case, it's not that we 
don't trust our users (but have a TOS in place of course just in case), 
it's that we don't trust other ISP's and Spam blackholes. For this 
reason, the burden of proof is placed on the account holder.

If a user mass-subscribes say, 10,000 members from a list of addresses 
they bought somewhere else, that user has absolutely no way to provide 
proof that the subscriber ever opted in to that list SPECIFICALLY.

However, on the flip side, if a user is moving from another host, or has 
multiple lists, or they're own signup pages/database, etc... they still 
have they're own proof but are using the mass subscription option to 
use. Hence why I personally do not think removing it entirely is a grand 
idea, and why offering a way for hosts to control the subscription 
process to a point could be very helpful.


Fil wrote:
> Hi Krystal,
> I'd be interested to know what you call "double opt-in". Is it a web
> subscription + email reply with the cookie, or double-that (and in
> that case, what is the scenario).
> FWIW I don't think the option Cindy proposes passes Occam's razor. For
> the moment it looks like lots of complexity for a need that is not
> well defined and certainly not generic. If the ISP has deliberately
> crippled Mailman's interface up to the point it's not usable any more,
> they should probably try and come up with a solution; or at least try
> to explain (to the devs or the users) why and how.
> -- Fil

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