Great Circle Associates List-Managers
(March 1996)
 

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Subject: Re: Changing Reply-To: Fields
From: de5 @ sws5 . ctd . ornl . gov
Organization: Oak Ridge National Lab, Oak Ridge, Tenn., USA
Date: 15 Mar 1996 13:20:06 GMT
To: bob @ marquee . com (Bob Cappel)
Cc: list-managers @ greatcircle . com
In-reply-to: <v0153050aad6d1f2b6e0d@[204.29.16.69]>
References: <v0153050aad6d1f2b6e0d@[204.29.16.69]>

>I have read the FAQ and the Manual, but this concept is still unclear to
>me.  I would really like the reply to field to read:
>
>Reply-To:       NAME OF MY LIST (listname@marquee.com)

This is really a bad idea.

>or something like that.  So that people who recieve mail from the list know
>it's from the list, not just some random user, and so that they can reply
>directly to the list.

Mail sent to a mailing list will look like:

        From: joe@foo.bar (Joe Smith)
        To: mailing-list@listsite.baz
        Subject: Whatever

        Blah blah blah

The recipient can deduce, based on the fact that his address isn't
listed in the "To" header, that he received the message via the
"mailing-list" mailing list.

Just about every modern mail agent provides a way to reply either to
just the sender (From: or Reply-To:) or to everyone (From:/Reply-To:,
To:, and CC:).

The "fix" is educating users in carefully reading headers (a very
valuable skill) and learning how to operate their software (another
very important skill). Hacks like using Reply-To: to direct replies to
the list are bad because they discourage proper understanding and
usage of the system and penalize those who know how things really
work.

-Dave


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