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Re: [tdf-discuss] Mail List issues



On Mar 9, 2011, at 04:05 , NoOp wrote:

Of late there are multiple posts on the users list regarding mail list
subscribe and unsubscribe issues.


<snip>

Florian points out an issue with mailman:
http://permalink.gmane.org/gmane.comp.documentfoundation.discuss/226
<quote>
We use mlmmj for good reasons.
Mailman has a lot of options and the luxury of a web interface, but it's
a total mess for moderators. You have one password per list for all
moderators, and moderation via e-mail is a pain.
</quote>

mlmmj is no better for moderators.  The choice we have is pass/no pass.  And moderation is still 
via email, and is still a pain.  We have no way of making public that a message has been moderated, 
and/or adding the OPs email address to the list of senders so that Reply All will include the OP.  
To approve a message, instead of clicking on Reply and getting the original subject as subject of 
the reply email, we get up a new message with empty subject, so that sending the message is a 
two-click job instead of a one-click job, since my client is set to warn me when I send an email 
without subject.  Not substantial when there are only a couple of messages, but a PITA when there 
are twenty.

Very occasionally a message arrives which I try to answer directly to the sender, and don't pass 
the message to the list, but I have no easy way to let my fellow moderators know, and the chances 
are that one of them will pass it anyway.

When I think moderation, I think of moderation as it applies to a forum, or, for that matter, 
possibly the Nabble interface.  A moderator should be able to redirect a message if, for example, a 
website issue is sent to users, or, more commonly, users and discuss are confused, but we can't do 
that.  Naturally we'd have to let the OP know in such a case, but that would be part of the job.

But I wonder if the issue with mailman (moderator passwords) is actually
the case:
http://www.gnu.org/software/mailman/mailman-admin.pdf

I'm not versed on mailman, so I don't know the answer. However, the
current issue of mail list subscribers not being able to
subscribe/unsubscribe/modify user settings/etc in mlmmj as they can in
mailman is an issue. And it will likely be more of an issue as the
number of subscribers to the list(s) grow.

+10

Perhaps Florian et al can explain just how TDF plan to implement the
lists, now and in the future? Some questions:

1. Why are unsubscribed posts even allowed? It would seem that folks
would have learned from the OOo list history.

Personally I don't have much of an issue with this.  It's for their sakes that we have moderators.  
A new user is likely to have a question or two when something doesn't work quite the same way it 
does in MS Word, for example, but for the most part can make his/her own way.  And there is a 
resistance to giving one's email address to everybody and his brother, so the ability to send one 
or two messages to a list and watch for responses on a web interface is just what they need.  Then 
they go away, and never get the flood of mail messages they don't want, and additionally have no 
problem unsubscribing.  Subscribing with the no-mail option is not really an option here since they 
think they need the mail in order to get their reply.

***** From this point of view alone, a mailing list with ability to send a message without signing 
up has the edge over a forum.*****  In every other respect mailing lists are so twentieth century.


2. Why are multiple moderators necessary? If it's to get some poor soul
to sort & reject spam, then there are automated tools to do that instead.

Actually, sorting spam is a very minor part of the job, at least up to now, so the automated tools 
do their job.  But my subjective impression is that spam is beginning, slowly, to increase.  To my 
way of thinking - again from the forum world - the principal job of a moderator is to try and 
maintain a civilised intercourse between participants, and either warn or shut off uncivil ones.  
To warn we don't have to be moderators, and we can't shut off uncivil ones, so no advantage here.  
Now if mlmmj had a membership form that was read-only, and we moderators could impose it on a 
member for a period...


3. Why are we getting posts on the user & other lists using
Mlmmj — Mailing List Management Made Joyful:
http://mlmmj.org/
that the user can't unsubscribe, or can't set nomail?

Now THAT is a serious problem.  I agree with NoOp that the trickle of help-me-unsubscribe messages 
is beginning to resemble the Queensland floods.


4. Why is it necesary to send an email for unsubscribe instructions?

Right on!

<snip>

Let's please discuss & nip this issue in the bud now/early before the
lists/users grow & can no longer be managed properly.

//James
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