Great Circle Associates List-Managers
(August 1995)

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Subject: Re: Not spam, but an abuse of net resources nonetheless.
From: close @ lunch . engr . sgi . com (Diane Barlow Close)
Organization: Definitely not organized. :-)
Date: Sun, 20 Aug 1995 09:53:17 -0700
To: list-managers @ greatcircle . com
References: <41512b$8lb @ murrow . corp . sgi . com> <DDM0MG . JJL @ nbi . com>

Joe George <jgeorge @
 nbi .
 com> writes:
>close @
 lunch .
 engr .
 sgi .
 com (Diane Barlow Close) writes:
>>This isn't spam, but it simply has to be one of the weirdest abuses of net
>>resources I've seen by a postmaster and system adiministrator.  Basically
>> uses Usenet newsgroups to try to contact ONE person whenever that
>>person's e-mail bounces from mailing lists:
>Being the accused net-abuser and baby-killer, before everyone else jumps on
>this bandwagon, I feel the need to indicate that Ms. Close is stating a VERY
>IMPORTANT falsehood to make her point.
> [snip]  Ms. Close likes to imply that we do this
>dozens of times a day, but indeed we do not.

It was private e-mail from Mr. George, himself, that gave me impression
that this was a regular and frequent thing at  I'll quote the
particular paragraph below, even though I strongly dislike posting any
portion of private e-mail to any newsgroup.  However, since I'm accused of
being a liar, rather than merely being misinformed, I feel I'd like to
defend myself properly.  Mr. George wrote to me stating:

   As a general rule on our mailing lists -- one rule that I don't expect
   you to be aware of, nor am I interested in your own personal opinions
   of, BTW -- users who are unsubscribed from a list due to some major
   fault with email delivery are notified in a Usenet newsgroup with the
   same basic emphasis as the mailing list, in the likely event that
   the user reads Usenet newsgroups with similar topics. I'm sorry if
   you and your "royal We" don't like this policy, but it has worked
   many times in other newsgroups to contact users who are unable to be
   reached my email.

"As a general rule" says, to me, that it's done on a regular basis,
and the "it has worked many times" suggests that it's been done, a lot,
before.  Are you saying, then, that it's only done in very "exceptional"
circumstances, and rarely?  What determines these circumstances?
How often?  What's your definition of "rare"?

>This user was no longer able to receive Internet email via Prodigy, so there
>was simply no other way to attemp to reach them, except post this short
>message in a newsgroup with a similar scope of interest.

How about trying postmaster @
 prodigy .
 com?  I also suggested a "bounces"
mailing list, but Mr. George has indicated that this is not practical
at his site.

>I am sorry, but there is simply no way I can be convinced that ONE posting
>to ONE newsgroup, off topic or not, can really honestly be considered "net

If every list manager felt this way, the newsgroups would be very quickly
filled with "your mail is bouncing" messages ad infinitum.

>If anyone other than Ms. Close thinks so, I'd love to hear your reasoning.

Yes, please do write or post!
Diane Close
   close @
 lunch .
 engr .
 sgi .
   I'm at lunch all day. :-)

Indexed By Date Previous: Re: munging reply-to headers (digest V4 #154)
From: Chip Rosenthal <chip @ unicom . com>
Next: Re: Not spam, but an abuse of net resources nonetheless.
From: Michelle Dick <artemis @ rahul . net>
Indexed By Thread Previous: Re: Abuse of newsgroup space by a mailing list manager. (fwd)
From: Ping Huang <pshuang @ MIT . EDU>
Next: Re: Not spam, but an abuse of net resources nonetheless.
From: Michelle Dick <artemis @ rahul . net>

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