Off-topic: Usenet archiving history

David Bolen at
Sun Jun 14 07:59:58 EDT 2009

Ben Finney <ben+python at> writes:

> David Bolen < at> writes:
>> Individual messages could include an Expires: header if they wished,
> Since we're already well off-topic: NNTP, HTTP, and email, and probably
> other protocols as well, all deal with messages. They are all consistent
> in defining a message [0] as having *exactly one* header.

Heh, I'm not sure it's quite as consistent as you may think,
particularly with older RFCs, which are relevant in this discussion
since we're talking about historical artifacts.

For example, while more recent mail RFCs like 2822 may specifically
talk about header fields as the "header" (singular) of the message,
the older RFC 822 instead refers to a "headers" (plural) section.

> Every time you call a field from the header “a header”, or refer to
> the plural “headers of a message”, the IETF kills a kitten. You
> don't want to hurt a kitten, do you?

Heaven forbid - though I'd think I could hold my own with the IETF.
My reference to "header" was in lieu of "header line", something that
the Usenet RFCs (1036, and the older 850) do extensively themselves.

But I'll be more careful in the future - need to ensure kitten safety!

-- David

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