Edward J. Branley writes:
>I can't help but wonder why they can't put someone on staff to
>function as a liaison between the established net community (system
>administrators, listowners, etc.) and their users. I've had the occasional
>problem with a user, either personal or technical, where I've been able to
>write the sysadmin of the site and work things out. The only time I ever
>received a reply from anyone who worked for AOL was when one of my
>listmembers from AOL wrote to them to explain my concerns. The only response
>I ever received prior to that was the AOL replybot.
This confuses and bothers me for several reasons. For one, *I* am (a)
liaison, at least the primary one, and have been for over a year. Up until
recently, I was the one who answered *every* piece of mail sent to
firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
and a good share of firstname.lastname@example.org. I have had a n assistant for the past
several months who handles routine postmaster mail, and forwards anything
otherwise directly to me.
So far, this mail is the the (second?) time I've ever heard from you. If
you've gotten the ackbot message, then your mail *was* received by
email@example.comfirstname.lastname@example.org. Since I never got anything forwarded, the
mail was either a complaint about an AOL member (in which case the complaint
was sent to Terms of Service for processing) or for some reason my assistant
felt it was not necessary to forward it on to me. I find it hard to believe
that he would do this.
In the past, the volume of mail we received was low enough that I could
personally respond to every piece of mail received. Today, this is no longer
the case because the volume *is* higher. We do still manage to respond to
many of the messages received at postmaster, and I respond to all listmaster
and newsmaster mail.
>I'm also curious to know if anyone here has decided to reject subscriptions
>from users in the domain aol.com. I get my uucp feed from a local university
>who provides it as a public service. The sysadmin at the host site gets
>on bounce messages that pass through to uucp sites. This morning, AOL sent
>system over 80 bounce messages saying that various accounts had full
>mailboxes. Of course, the ultimate irony of those bounce messages was that
>the original message was from an AOL member complaining to the list address
>about how he couldn't remember how to unsubscribe to the list. :(
This is understandably irritating. I receive several hundred pieces of mail a
day for the three lists I run. Most of the mail comes from non-AOL sites,
much of it from users whose quotas have been exceeded, who have lost their
accounts, etc. -- typical list admin messages. Mail I get regarding AOL
subscribers whose mailboxes have filled result in their subscriptions to my
lists being ended. If members cannot be bothered to read or download their
mail regularly, they obviously aren't that interested in my lists (one of
which runs an average of 100 pcs a day). We *DO* tell them to be careful when
joining lists, and we *DO* tell them to manage their mailboxes. 550 pieces of
mail per user on our host system is not unreasonable, especially when it is
quite easy to transfer all of your mail from the host to your local computer
on a regular basis (as often as once an hour).
>So, are my AOL problems unique to my site? I know that many of the larger
>list management programs like majordomo can filter out a lot of the
>extraneous messages and bounces and such, so am I perceiving more of a
>problem because I don't have such a system? Or, are others having similar
>problems dealing with AOL management?
For those list packages which dump Precedence: bulk mail, our mail system is
being changed to include that header on all mailbox-full mail. I'm hoping
that the mail system we are moving towards will be able to remove limits
altogether. Any suggestions list owners have on how to encourage members to
intelligently manage mail are *most* appreciated, especially as I am working
on revising our mailing list area online.
And Mr Branley, if you can give me any of the dates when you sent mail to
postmaster/listmaster/newsmaster, I'd appreciate it. I'd like to know how you
can be sending mail to us, getting an ack reply, and then have mail
apparently just *disappear*.
___David O'Donnell (email@example.com, PMDAtropos@aol.com)
\ America Online Postmaster, USENET Admin | Tel. +1 703/556-3725
\ Belief-L, GLB-News, SoftRevu List Admin | FAX +1 703/883-1514
\/ "The spam stops here."
From: Gess Shankar <firstname.lastname@example.org>
From: email@example.com (Edward J. Branley)