At 11:47 AM -0400 10/24/00, James M Galvin wrote:
>I would argue as to whether it is a false assumption, since clearly the
>documented purpose of the message TO header is to indicate where an
>originator sent a message.
we could argue, but IMHO, you'd lose, and IYHO, I'd lose, probably.
you're making the assumption, and I don't buy it, that if someone is
being sent something through a list it's no longer being sent to
them. I disagree with that, and with the growing use of VERP and
customized lists, you can't even say that a mailing list is "bulk"
mail per se any more, either. So the assumption you're making might
be true of majordomo I, but isn't true of any MLM that VERPs. So it's
not a safe assumption to use to generalize across list mail.
>Nonetheless, I have to concede that while I might want only my personal
>email to have my email address in the message TO header, I know it is
>not true in general anymore. I find this disconcerting.
And I find it useful and it solves all sorts of problems inherent in
mechanics of mail lists in an age where everyone had 93 mail
>is an elist message. You suggest testing for an appropriate header, but
>the point is the "appropriate header" varies by elist technology.
A minor issue, IMHO. I'd say 90-95% put appropriate info in Sender,
and the few who don't still (for the most part) have easily
identifiable ways to find them. This is exactly the problem the
List-ID RFC is designed to solve, by the way, so it's being resolved,
except for people who ignore standards in the first place.
>One problem I see is the overlaying of issues. I understand the
>need/desire for personalization. It certainly has its place, e.g., if I
>belong to an organization and they use email to stay in touch, a
>personalized message has a way of promoting continued loyalty. But
>frankly, I'm having a lot of trouble accepting that line of reasoning
>when it comes to discussion groups or newsletters or news distributions.
Fair enough. I certainly am not going to stand and say your opinion's
bogus -- I understand where you're coming from, sympathize to some
extent, but don't agree and I don't believe it's a common opinion.
> Three big reasons why I see this as a big win:
I won't argue point by point, because it boils down to "we disagree".
I see your views, I simply don't hold them...
>My personal opinion is that elist technologies/services are exploiting
>an opportunity promoted by marketers. The downside as I see it is that
>it takes away from the overall robustness of the email infrastructure,
>which is so fragile anyway.
I think it improves the robustness, because, as someone who runs
these things in a big way, the biggest problem I keep running into is
the "what the heck address did this route through anyway" issue.
I personally disagree that the answer is sticking the subscribed
address in the body of the message -- I think the message is owned by
the author, not the MLM, and I already have philosophical issues with
putting a footer on things, but since it is *so* useful in helping
naive users and I can make it explicit that it's not part of the
message, I do it. I don't want that to get out of control, however,
by stuffing everything I can into it. And stuffing it in a header
(aka the List-* stuff or List-ID) isn't a complete solution because
there are still too many places that strip all that stuff while
rerouting and botching mail delivery. And the users who most need
that info are least likely to know how to turn on full headers or
whatever it takes to access them.
I guess this comes down to a philosophical problem, so of course I'm
going to wander in with an analogy for people to find loopholes in --
the post office.
As far as I can tell, your view of your mailbox is there is two kinds of mail:
1) mail to you - stuff from mom, your bill from the electrical company.
2) junk mail delivered to "resident" or "occupant". Things like the latest
home depot flyer, or the 39 million political flyers I'm madly
In my view, there's a third style: individually addressed bulk
mailing. In the real world, this includes things like the restoration
hardware catalog -- it's a mass mailing, but it's still addressed to
By your view, anything that's mailed in multiples (like that
Restoration Hardware catalog) should be sent to my address for
Resident. By my view, even though they're mailing a million catalogs,
they're still sending me MY copy.
I see the e-list area moving into this third area. And I don't have a
problem with that, and I think it's a good thing overall. Now if we
could only get the paper cataloggers to be as good at unsubscribes
and bounce processings as e-mail people are....
Chuq Von Rospach - Plaidworks Consulting (mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org)
Apple Mail List Gnome (mailto:email@example.com)
Be just, and fear not.