Is there a time limit for replies?

Duncan Booth duncan.booth at invalid.invalid
Fri Oct 31 14:58:55 CET 2008

Paul Boddie <paul at> wrote:

> On 31 Okt, 10:38, Rafe <rafesa... at> wrote:
>> I tried to post some follow-ups to some issues I posted in the hopes
>> of helping others, but I only get "reply to author" and "forward", but
>> no "reply" option (using GoogleGroups). Is there some kind of time
>> limit to reply?
> Probably not for any of the newsgroups or mailing lists accessed via
> Google Groups. The behaviour you're seeing could be temporary - Google
> Groups isn't always particularly reliable - or it might be the case
> that the sender is one of those people who has requested that their
> messages not be archived, perhaps interpreted by Google Groups in the
> way you describe, but I'm just speculating at this point.

No, I believe Google Groups does impose a limit on replying. Usenet 
doesn't, but if the original message is so old that it has expired from 
most news servers then there's no benefit in replying over just posting a 
new message that says 'There was a thread x years ago where <someone> in 
message <insert message id or link to google's archive here> said ...'
Then you'd better give plenty of context because nobody is going to 
remember the original message anyway.

If you use the same subject line as the original then (unless google groups 
changed when I wasn't looking) Google will thread it together with the 
original messages: Google doesn't understand real threads. Real newsreaders 
won't thread it, but since they won't have the original anyway you haven't 
lost anything.

Duncan Booth

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