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[liberationtech] list reply-all

Rich Kulawiec rsk at
Thu Mar 21 12:56:39 PDT 2013

On Wed, Mar 20, 2013 at 05:48:20AM -0400, Michael Allan wrote:
> Pardon me, but that's not true.  GNU Mailman is a decent list server
> and it ships with reply-to-sender.  You must go out of your way to
> munge the Reply-to header.  They recommend against it:

Correct.  (That is, (a) correct that they recommend against it
and (b) correct that they SHOULD recommend against it.)  [1]

Now it's true that there are broken email clients out there that don't
handle this gracefully.  The solution is not to accomodate broken email
clients, but to insist that users of broken email clients either fix them,
get them fixed, or abandon them for others.

I will also suggest, that in the context of this particular list,
everyone should be using a mail client that permits and even better,
encourages, full editing of the To:, Cc: and Bcc: fields and that members
get in the habit of double-checking those fields before sending.
That's just good email practice, along with things like not top-posting,
not full-quoting, and not sending mail marked up with HTML.


[1] Mailman is more than "decent": it is, at the moment, the best
available software for running mailing lists, period.   Certainly all
closed-source software may be immediately dismissed from consideration,
which leaves us with things like ezmlm and majordomo, none of which
have Mailman's feature set, standards compliance, or ongoing track
record of bug fixes and improvements.  Oh, it's not perfect, and I sure
wish it wasn't written in Python: but it's the best-available, and its
authors have done an exemplary job of bug-fixing and enhancement.

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