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From Rob Weir <>
Subject Re: [Proposal] Shutting down legacy OOo mailing lists
Date Thu, 20 Oct 2011 19:12:53 GMT
On Thu, Oct 20, 2011 at 2:53 PM, Dave Fisher <> wrote:
> Hi Rob,
> Your technical item was an interesting distraction. It may have a use. I think below
you give a good explanation of your plan.
> Let me express a recommendation that ought to alleviate my concerns about the full MX
> I am still concerned that we may be abandoning a database of over 450,000 OOo users,
but that is another, related, topic.
> On Oct 20, 2011, at 10:24 AM, Rob Weir wrote:
>> On Thu, Oct 20, 2011 at 1:14 PM, Dennis E. Hamilton
>> <> wrote:
>>> Rob,
>>> As were you, I was looking at the value of the ezmlm confirmation e-mail and
>>> its opt-in requirement for moderator-initiated subscriptions.  It seemed to
>>> that would provide a clean opt-in point for users of lists about to be
>>> retired.
>>> The process for the moderator-initiated subscription needs to know
>>> subscription e-mail addresses for the current members of the to-be-retired
>>> list.    It depends, of course, on a moderator having the subscriber e-mail
>>> addresses, and I did not indicate how that could be solved any more than your
>>> experiment did.
>> So you are recommending that we send an unsolicited opt-in message to
>> all list subscribers, including the spammers that have taken over many
>> of the lists?
>> Work it through and see what the savings in effort really is for the user:
>> 1) They still need to read two emails:  One that tells them to expect
>> an opt-in email and then the actual opt-in notice.  If we don't do the
>> first one then the 2nd note will scare many of them, since it appears
>> to come unsolicited.
>> 2) Whatever we do, they still need to respond to the opt-in email
>> 3) The net savings in effort is that the user does not not need to
>> click an initial mailto: link to generate the confirmation email.  So
>> in order to save the user a single click, we're going to risk going
>> against data protection laws as well as sending an invite to spammers
>> to join our list?
> Got it. One email - repeated.
> If the text around the mailto: informs the user not to use an address
for their new subscription then my concerns are moot. It should be something like "All personal email address forwarders will be dropped on migration."

OOo was providing only a forwarder, right?  No SMTP server for sending
an email from an address.  So this might solve itself
by the nature of how a user signs up for the list, i.e., by sending an
email from a email address.

Or would spoofed return addresses as GMail does them be an issue?  Do
you know off hand if our ezmlm subscribes users via spoofed addresses?
 Or would it only take the real address?

But if technical means are not sufficient, then a message, along the
lines you suggest would work.

> The text of this email needs to be carefully considered on ooo-dev. Since you plan a
review then I am fine.
> I also think that the one (or more) OOo legacy ML that are being continued should be
clearly mentioned as well.
> Look at this email as the one opportunity to get a clear message about AOOo out to all
of these subscribers. We have a difficult story for the user and it needs to be the most positive
and consistent message possible.

In some cases this may be the first time that a subscriber has heard
from us.  So yes, we need to make a good first impression.  We're
trying to start or continue a relationship with them.

>> This makes zero sense for me.  If you want to do it, then please
>> volunteer.  But as an employee of a large multinational corporation
>> that does care about data protection laws, I will not be involved in
>> any such approach.
> I am looking at this as due diligence before making a decision where there is no going
> Regards,
> Dave
>> -Rob
>>> I think the modifications to ezmlm messages is important regardless.
>>>  - Dennis
>>> On the other hand, making moderators of the current list be moderators on the
>>> new list and being sure that they notify the list of the move prospect would
>>> be a way to subdivide the work with people who presumably do have access to
>>> the distribution list of the retiring ML.  Those moderators can be expected
>>> follow the rules that apply in their jurisdictions.
>>> And wait: Aren't the lists on a US hosted site already?  The Oracle Privacy
>>> Policy might be the governing situation.
>>> Providing an opt-in migration that is not a surprise to the list members,
>>> announced clearly in advance, might be a clean way to navigate all of this.
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: Rob Weir []
>>> Sent: Thursday, October 20, 2011 09:29
>>> To:
>>> Subject: Re: [Proposal] Shutting down legacy OOo mailing lists
>>> On Thu, Oct 20, 2011 at 12:23 PM, Dennis E. Hamilton
>>> <> wrote:
>>>> The moderator-issued subscription e-mail seems useful, especially because
>>>> is done as an opt-in (requiring confirmation from the recipient).  If the
>>>> list
>>>> to be retired was informed of this process, its near-automatic operation
>>>> could
>>>> be considered.
>>> I don't see how this could work.  Maybe if you happen to be a
>>> moderator of the legacy list and are willing to take on yourself any
>>> personal liability related to data protection laws.  But I don't see
>>> how this would work in general.  Any thing we do to automate this
>>> would still require proactive action by the user, either sending an
>>> email, clicking a mailto: link in an email, or going to a website and
>>> entering their email address.  They would need to do an action like
>>> that, and then respond to the confirmation email.
>>>>  - Dennis
>>>> With regard to the messages from ezmlm, I wonder if these are ones that are
>>>> customizable by list.  I thought they were.  A valuable way to do this
>>>> be to include a link to an English-language version of the message in all
>>>> ones.  Pointing to other useful web pages might also be valuable.  I notice
>>>> that ezmlm is designed to work relying on e-mail alone and that should be
>>>> preserved, but links to web-based support is also valuable and is very
>>>> useful
>>>> to link to.  The web page could also deal with thing such as what OOo lists
>>>> does this one replace, where are the archives for the original list(s), etc.
>>>> It strikes me that there remains the issue I see, in that the ooo-younameit
>>>> @
>>>> i.a.o lists are considerably less friendly than the theynamedit@ OO.o lists.
>>>> -----Original Message-----
>>>> From: Rob Weir []
>>>> Sent: Thursday, October 20, 2011 07:57
>>>> To:
>>>> Subject: Re: [Proposal] Shutting down legacy OOo mailing lists
>>>> On Wed, Oct 19, 2011 at 4:11 PM, Andrea Pescetti
>>>> <> wrote:
>>>> <snip>
>>>>> I would turn the post you describe into a warning that the mailing list
>>>>> address will change, including all information about Apache but not
>>>>> requiring users to take action. I volunteer to consolidate the 12 lists
>>>>> into
>>>>> 3 and to subscribe users to the right ones (of course, being "project
>>>>> owner"
>>>>> of, I have a list of all subscribers to the 12 lists).
>>>> I did an experiment on how we can subscribe users to the mailing list
>>>> automatically.  I looked just at the technical aspect of this.  I did
>>>> not look at the legal or policy implications.
>>>> Moderators of Apache lists can subscribe new users to the list, by
>>>> sending a specially addressed email to the list manager.  For example,
>>>> to subscribe to this list, you would send an email to:
>>>> Note the @ in the address is replaced by an =
>>>> A moderator can do the above, but this still will generate a
>>>> confirmation email, to, in English:
>>>> -----------------
>>>> "Subject:  confirm subscribe to
>>>> Hi! This is the ezmlm program. I'm managing the
>>>> mailing list.
>>>> I'm working for my owner, who can be reached
>>>> at
>>>> To confirm that you would like
>>>> added to the ooo-dev mailing list, please send
>>>> a short reply to this address:
>>>> Usually, this happens when you just hit the "reply" button.
>>>> If this does not work, simply copy the address and paste it into
>>>> the "To:" field of a new message.
>>>> or click here:
>>>> -----------------
>>>> So with the moderator rights available to us now, we can't do a fully
>>>> automated sign up of existing list members, even if we had resolved
>>>> the legal and policy issues.  I don't know if there are other,
>>>> administrative functions in ezmlm that could be used, by Apache Infra,
>>>> to more fully automate this.
>>>> -Rob

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