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Re: [css-d] OT: List headers

Sent by Madhu Menon on 28 January 2002 12:12


(yes, I know this is slightly off-topic, so this will be my only post on 
the subject)

Dear ListMatrons (my term - like it?),

 >>Can we please have a reply-to: [EMAIL-REMOVED]
 >>header mr list mum sirs?

[snip]

>The answer is "sorry, but no." All the high-volume lists
>I've ever seen, and even some low-volume lists, have been configured
>as is css-d.

Might I ask which ones? I know you're on wd-l, and it's not configured that 
way. Neither are evolt.org, sigia-l, monkeyjunkies, and many others I'm on. 
 From the member names I've seen so far, most people here are on one or 
more of those lists, so they are more familiar with the conventions of 
those lists, which means that they send personal and offlist mail by 
changing the delivery address, not list mail.


>* It makes the sender think about whether or not the response is
>  something
>  the whole list needs to see.
>  * A much lower chance of personal mail (especially the grumpy kind)
>  being
>  accidentally sent to the list instead of the original poster.

No offence, but this is slightly insulting. Yes, some people do this, but 
to assume that this will be the case most of the time is to imply that most 
of your subscribers are clueless and incapable of using good judgement. To 
paraphrase a popular principle of justice, it is better to allow one rude 
post to go through than accuse ten members of being flamers by default.
(which is also why I don't care much for moderated lists.)

Your argument is that changing the delivery address makes a person think 
again before sending a flame out. I say that it doesn't. I've often told 
people that when they're angry and want to dash off a potentially offensive 
message, they should put it away for an hour and then read it again. That 
gives them the time to cool down. However, changing the "To:" address takes 
about a minute at most, and an angry person is not likely to have calmed 
down enough to reconsider the impact of his or her mail in that time. 
Hence, I believe that it serves only as an inconvenience, nothing more.

>  I understand it can be annoying from time to time, but from a list
>(mumble) point of view, it's better that one person be annoyed by a
>mistake they can easily correct (by resending to the list) than an
>entire list be annoyed by a mistake that can't be corrected, and is
>captured forever in the archives.

What about people who change the address and *still* violate list conduct 
guidelines? This reminds me of copy protection schemes on software. The 
people who pirate software continued to do it by cracking the protection 
scheme (i.e., they weren't deterred at all), while legitimate users of 
legal software continued to be pissed off by all the extra hoops they had 
to jump through to make their software work. Similarly, rude people will 
probably be rude anyway, while the majority of us will be inconvenienced.

And who says only "one person" is annoyed? Only one person has voiced his 
opinion so far on-list. That isn't the same thing. (You also say that many 
others have contacted you off-list about it.)

Lucky me. I subscribe in digest mode, which has the correct reply address 
set. :)

Ultimately, Eric, you run the list, and it's your choice, but I wanted to 
present my side of the argument too.

Regards,

Madhu

<<<   *   >>>
Madhu Menon
User Experience Consultant
e-mail: [EMAIL-REMOVED]

Weblog: http://madman.weblogs.com
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