[Mailman-Users] Autoresponder and privacy

Mark Sapiro mark at msapiro.net
Wed Apr 6 17:50:11 CEST 2011

Clare Redstone wrote:
>Thank you for replying so quickly. I don't understand some of the technical
>stuff to understand why 
>the autoresponder message came to me not the group. But am glad it did!
>Because we're a discussion group, I have MM set up for reply to the list.

Since autoresponders that reply to list mail are broken by definition,
it is not possible to say for sure to what addresses they might
respond, but if we assume that the autoresponder won't reply to a To:
or Cc: address, the only other 'routing' headers in which the list
posting address appears are:

the From: header if the list is anonymous, and

the Reply-To: header if the original poster has set it to the list or
if the list is set to "reply to list" (this is what I ment by munging
the Reply-To:)

Since your list is "reply to list" I'm a little surprised that the
autoresponse went to From: and not Reply-To:, but as I said, if
something is broken, we can't know all the ways in which it might be

>But haven't set any of the mung options, or we wouldn't know who messages
>are from. We have quite a few people with the same forename so it gets

Well, you are munging the Reply-To: in the sense that I meant.

>> You could set all members moderated and new members moderated by
>>default and then clear each poster's moderate bit as they post.
>>Clearing the moderate bit is just a checkbox in the admindb interface
>>when approving the post. That way, a lurker's autoresponse could never
>>make it to the full list.
>Thanks for this suggestion. Yes, that would solve it for people who never
>post. There'd still be the possibility of someone posting a message so
>coming off moderation, then later setting their autoresponder. But I'm
>reassured that you say loops are rare.

What you say is true as far as looping is concerned, but for the
privacy aspect, the person would have already posted at some point and
revealed their posting address in that way, so privacy should be less
of a concern for that person.

As far as loops are concerned, we can certainly envision scenarios in
which this can happen, but I can't recall a report of any. There are
threads in the archives of this list about filtering such messages,
but not any of loops as I recall.

Mark Sapiro <mark at msapiro.net>        The highway is for gamblers,
San Francisco Bay Area, California    better use your sense - B. Dylan

More information about the Mailman-Users mailing list