[Mailman-Users] Footer Bloat

Stephen J. Turnbull stephen at xemacs.org
Fri Aug 28 06:07:07 CEST 2015

Billy Crook writes:

 > Am I just missing where this setting is, or has this not been
 > thought of yet.

It's been thought of, and it's just plain hard to do, because
automatically editing mail bodies robustly is just plain hard to do.

If you have a vast majority of users who use the same MUA, you can
probably get away with assuming that MUA's format, and will rarely, if
ever, get complaints from users whose mail has been mutilated.  Given
the variety and generally abysmal level of standard conformance of the
MUAs out there, we can't count on that. :-(

 > "apply footer only if footer text not already in message" would be
 > my logic of preference.

If there is any personalization (eg, user-specific unsubscribe link),
this logic doesn't work.  You need to remove the existing footer(s)
for other user(s), and add the correct one.  If you're not using any
personalization, this isn't a problem, of course.

It's also ugly, as in most cases the replying user's MUA will quote
the footer, often multiple times.

The "first in thread" logic has the same problems of personalization
and ugliness.

 > If that's not already something mailman can do, where would I modify the
 > code to add it?

Mailman/Handlers/Decorate.py.  Warning: Mailman 2 doesn't know
anything about threads, and Mailman 3 (unmerged development code) has
a rather different idea of threads (called "dynamic lists", "dlists"
for short).  So you'll have to use the "detect existing footer" logic,
not the "first in thread" logic.

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