I just had the following discussion with someone who discovered his list
was added to gmane without his permission. The following quote segment
several emails into our discussion has text from me, him, and my reply:
>>> A better analogy is the way search engine spiders walk the web looking
>>> for content. What happens when the Google spider comes across your
>>> site? If you don't want Google there, you need to indicate that with a
>>> robots.txt file. IMHO, gmane is a lot like Google, and while they
>>> should do a better job of proactively ensuring that it's OK for them to
>>> mirror/archive lists, list owners need to do what website owners do (if
>>> they don't want to be searched and indexed in search engines) and create
>>> a type of robots.txt that tells gmane to go away.
>>You are correct; this is a better analogy. Unfortunately, there is no
>>standard way for a list owner to post a "no public mirrors" sign.
>No, there isn't. But in the meantime, I think it should be easily findable,
>and should *at least* be in the welcome message so that if any other site
>like gmane happens to subscribe, they should then immediately unsubscribe
>and scrub their site of any trace of the list that forbids such mirroring.
>I think that if list owners do A and services like gmane do B it would
>suffice for now. Not an ideal solution, but better than some of the others,
>with a balance of responsibility on both sides for publicizing and
>determining what the policy is.
>>> Would you support an RFC that addresses mirroring of mailing lists and
>>> specifies a listname-mirrors.txt file that can be obtained from the list
>>> server and which tells the mirror-to-be what the mirroring policy is for
>>> the list in question?
>>Would I support it? Yes. Will I write it? No.
>I wasn't asking you to write it. I just think it would be an acceptable
>solution, and wanted your input. I'll toss it back to the listmanagers list
>and see what they say. :-)
So, my question to list-managers: Do you support the suggestion that list
managers/owners have some responsibility (ala robots.txt) for telling those
who wish to mirror or archive the list what the list rules are?
If so, do you support the idea of this file being made available 1, 2, or
all 3 of the following ways:
A) As a separate file that can be requested from the list server (like an
info file) via email;
B) A file to be found on the list server's website (like robots.txt) if
there is a website; and
C) Included in the welcome message.
and what should the format of this file look like?