Re: The importance of replying to the list [Re: AbiWord Weekly News #137 (2003, week 13) released]

From: Randy Kramer (
Date: Sun Mar 30 2003 - 12:39:08 EST

  • Next message: stoney: "Re: Reply-to list [Re: AbiWord Weekly News #137 (2003, week 13) released]"

    On Sunday 30 March 2003 11:33 am, Alan Horkan wrote:
    > I like changing the subject line, and i may as well emphasise the
    > importance of replying to the list so that the mailing list becomes a
    > crude archive of past questions AND answers.


    > It is also important to note that everything on the list gets
    > publically archived every Word and every Link in effect an
    > advertisement for Abiword. ;)

    Good point!

    > [deleted rant explaining about irony]

    OK, did I use the wrong word? Reply off list if you wish.

    > > Suggestions to make "reply to the list" the default has been
    > > discussed and rejected more than once, but maybe we'd want to
    > > consider doing it
    > No! For the love of God, please no!
    > I think now is the perfect time to use a quote that amused me and i
    > clipped from another list:
    > >> Yes, I would appreciate seeing personal and confidential e-mails
    > >> accidentally misdirected to the list membershp, not to mention
    > >> amusing mail loops caused by defective "vacation" programs. These
    > >> things would enrich my life immensely.

    I guess it's just as well that we try not to go there -- I've been
    through those arguments. There are a lot of lists that do have the
    "reply to" set to the list (now I'll have to back that up, I guess) and
    have a minimum of that kind of trouble. But you are right, it can

    Some lists that do set the reply to header:
       * Basiclinux and
       * cfk, lvlug and -- although the list is
    moderated to avoid the abuses you mention -- a pain for the list
       * cooker, expert, and (and

    Looks like about half the lists I subscribe to. I guess a pattern is
    that these lists are the more beginner, user, non-technical, or
    "younger" oriented lists that I subscribe to. (Re "younger" -- i.e.,
    not "old school Unix", not the "canonical" lists if there can be such a

    I guess an argument I've never explicitly used (or seen) goes something
    like this:

    1. AbiWord (or whatever open source / free software project) has an
    intentionally open development process (in one or more senses).

    2. The AbiWord mailing lists are at least partially public (and should

    3. The default should be to keep the communication process open as well,
    and the default behavior of participants should be to be on their best
    (or reasonably good) behavior because they are "in public".

    Thus, the "reply to" should be set to the list.

    > If it means that people hit the reply-to button instead and i have to
    > suffer a few extra CarbonCopies then so be it but i really think
    > setting the Reply-To is a terrible idea.

    You are clearly not the only one, so I'll try to back off arguing the

    > > Of course, the other alternative is to continually plug the TWiki
    > > as the place to record answers (with questions) for the benefit of
    > > the
    > I will try and keep Twiki in mind.


    > As for the signature if you are going to change it you may as well
    > aslo make it simpler by turning it into a proper mailto link

    I like that!

    Randy Kramer

    > Mozilla mail users might want to vote for the Reply-to-list feature
    > Actually from looking at the mozilla bug report i think we might need
    > to add an extra header to allow the Reply-to-list feature to work.

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