Gateway to python-list is generating bounce messages.

Grant Edwards grante at
Thu Sep 11 16:57:58 CEST 2008

On 2008-09-11, Steven D'Aprano <steven at> wrote:
> On Thu, 11 Sep 2008 15:25:57 +1000, Ben Finney wrote:
>>> > The bounce messages are sent to you because you sent the original.
>>> Wrong.  I didn't send _any_ e-mail.  Why should I get bounce messages?
>> You asked for email to be sent,

No, I didn't.

>> by sending a Usenet post to comp.lang.python. That's what a
>> news-to-mail gateway does.

ROTFL.  That's like saying: you asked to be mugged by walking
down a street where there was a mugger.  That's what a mugger

> I wasn't aware that comp.lang.python was a news-to-mail
> gateway. How can one tell the difference between news groups
> that use a news-to-mail gateway, and news groups that don't?

One can't tell.

> Posting to a public newsgroup is obviously giving consent to
> forward that news posting to news clients. Given the ability
> to opt-out with the X-No- Archive header, there may even be an
> implied consent to allow archiving.  But I don't believe there
> is any such implied consent to format-shift news messages to
> email.

I certainly don't care if the articles I post are sent to
anybody via any transport.  I just don't like it being made to
appear that I'm the one who sent them.  I supposed I could
break down and stop using my real e-mail address in the From:
field.  Or I could add some procmail rules to try to filter out
the results of being joe-jobbed by the gateway.

> In practice, I couldn't care less what format my news postings
> are converted to, so long as it is invisible and transparent
> to me.

That's the issue: it's not invisible to you if you're getting
bounce messages, out-of-office-replies, and other e-mail
traffic generated by the fact the somebody is grabbing articles
off Usenet and mailing them out as if it were you that sent

> If somebody wants to build a
> news-to-carved-in-giant-stone-tablets gateway, I don't care,
> so long as I don't get giant stone tablets aren't dumped in 
> my front yard.
> Nor do I believe that by posting a news message I've
> automatically consented to receive email messages. To imply
> that the one implies the other is equivalent to arguing that
> because I've written a letter to the editor of a newspaper, I
> therefore must accept private correspondence from any person
> or corporation that has a subscription to that newspaper.
> (In practice, I don't mind human-generated email messages, but
> not automatic messages. If you can turn my munged email
> address into a real email address, I probably won't mind you
> emailing me. Don't abuse the privilege.)

I don't mind receiving private e-mails from people who recieved
the posting (either via Usenet or the gatewayed mailing list).
If I did, I wouldn't use my real e-mail address. But, I don't
want to receive machined generated trash or to be cc'd by
people following up to the article.

> "The bounce/ooo-reply is sent to the message author, not to
> any intermediate host(s). After all, on that end, it's normal
> email failure response -- notify the author of the message. It
> doesn't matter that the original message was posted on a
> Usenet newsgroup if that group is automatically relayed to
> members of a mailing list."
> But that's wrong: it *shouldn't* be an normal email failure
> response, because the message author is in no position to do
> anything about it except to cease posting. That's a problem
> with all mailing lists (that I know of).

I know of other mailing lists aren't configured that way: the
original author doesn't get bounce messages -- the sender of
the bounced e-mail gets the bounce message.

Grant Edwards                   grante             Yow! Clear the laundromat!!
                                  at               This whirl-o-matic just had
                                 a nuclear meltdown!!

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