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[liberationtech] Vote results on "Reply to" Question

Karl Fogel kfogel at
Thu Mar 28 14:40:10 PDT 2013

Yosem Companys <companys at> writes:
>We voted on #2 because that was the issue Joseph Lorenzo Hall raised
>html). He specifically asked for the following:
>    Has the possibility of reconfiguring libtech to not reply-all by
>    default been
>    broached? Maybe I'm the only one that trips over it so often.
>    best, Joe

The question Joe raised is not the one that was on the ballot.
Michael Allen has already explained why.

You could, for example, *add* a mailing list's address to a Reply-to
header while leaving any existing Reply-to (the one the poster set)
intact, thus avoiding the "can't find my way back home" problem.  There
are arguments for and against that, but in any case that choice was not
on the ballot.  The ballot presented a choice that no one asked for, as
far as I'm aware.

Regarding the present-day setting of the list:

>FYI, the list settings are configured as follows:
>> (1) Should any existing Reply-To: header found in the original
>> be stripped? If so, this will be done regardless of whether an
>> explicit Reply-To: header is added by Mailman or not.
>> - No
>> (2) Where are replies to list messages directed? Poster is
>> *strongly* recommended for most mailing lists.
>> - This list

I cannot tell from the archives what the list actually does, because
Reply-to headers are not preserved in the archives in any form, not even
in the mbox file downloads, as far as I can tell.  (If someone could
look at one of my messages, in their own personal email client archive,
and say how many Reply-to headers there are and what's in them, that
would be useful, since I always set Reply-to explicitly to a personal

In any case, if you're saying that the list now adds the list address to
Reply-to, but also preserves any other information already in the
Reply-to header (if any), then that's an interesting outcome... but it's
not one of the possible results from the question actually voted on:

>* Do you want replies to Liberationtech list messages directed to
>  "reply-to-all" or "reply-to-poster"? 

I don't object to a democratic result, but there was mis-formed ballot
here, and an unclear presentation of the issue at hand.  If we want to
do it right, it's a bit more complex than what we actually did.

I guess this problem comes up in democracies a lot :-).


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