> A novice sent a subscription request to a mailing list that
> I manage, a common event for all of us I'm certain.
> I sent him my standard rebuke ("Please contact your systems administrator
> about how to properly subscribe to a mailing list"), but he replied that
> there was no one there who could answer his question. One would think
> that the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory could afford one guru.
We have this discussion so often on this list, that I probably shouldn't
get it started again, but, obviously Sean hasn't participated
There seem to be two types of list managers:
1. Those that think that users should learn how to use
Listserv's, and it's the list manager's job to make them
learn, no matter how difficult, and
2. Those that think that every mistake a new user makes is
simply a signal to list managers on how to make their
procedures and documentation better.
As you've probably guessed, I'm of the latter persuasion. Why should
someone need a "systems administrator" to learn how to "properly"
subscribe? If you need even "one guru", the procedure is simply too
tough. Today's Listserv's are simply too inflexible. Here's an example
that I ran into recently:
A user has a mail system on his Mac (QuickMail or something) that
*always* adds a bunch of extraneous "Subject:" and "Office Memo" lines
in the text of each message. This user *cannot* use many vanilla
Listserv's because they give a "Bad command, flushing rest of your
message" error. It doesn't matter how many gurus are at this site,
unless they can re-write their mail system. Why should the Listserv
flush the rest of the message? Maybe it contains recognizable commands?