Should posters be required to join the list? (was: Bad habits)

Matt McCutchen matt at
Thu Jan 22 03:47:29 GMT 2009

On Thu, 2008-03-20 at 11:52 -0400, Matt McCutchen wrote:
> > Why are non members even allowed to post to the list?
> Why shouldn't they be?  In my view, subscription to the list just
> indicates a personal preference to receive all the mail because one
> wishes to either help others or stay informed of rsync-related
> happenings.  There's no reason why people who have one question but
> aren't otherwise interested in rsync should be forced to subscribe.

I'm shifting my position on this issue because I've seen several
problems that would be solved by requiring posters to join the list:

1. The following has happened at least once (I don't have a count): A
nonmember posts and receives notice that the message is held for
moderation.  He/she joins the list and resends the message; in the
meantime, I approve the old message because it is not spam.  The result
is a duplicate message.  If nonmember posts were rejected instead of
being held for moderation, this couldn't happen.

2. A user who I am helping neglects to CC the list on messages after
his/her first.  The line Wayne added to the footer of list messages
hasn't seemed to help, probably because the user receives my message
directly and nodupes suppresses the list message.  If posters were
required to join the list, the welcome message could clue them in to our
basic expectations, including this one.  (Note that another possible
solution here is Reply-To munging.  Wayne was reluctant to enable it
because it might trick people into sending private messages to the list,
but in my experience, the reverse problem is much more common.)

Under the new model, list membership would indicate willingness to
participate on the list according to proper etiquette, but would *not*
entail receiving all the mail: users are welcome to disable mail
delivery in their member options.  That means we still cannot assume
that everyone interested in a thread receives list mail, so the
arguments put forth in the "Bad habits" thread for CC-ing interested
parties directly still hold.


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