Great Circle Associates List-Managers
(June 1998)

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Subject: Re: integrated delivery system
From: 2200-999-1!Bill . Bogstad @ atbbs . com (Bill Bogstad)
Organization: American Tune BBS <-> Internet Gateway
Date: 21 Jun 98 14:21:36 -0500
To: list-managers @ greatcircle . com
>received: by (0.99.970109) id AA02848; 23 Jun 98 23:32:20 -0500

>From list-managers-owner @
 GreatCircle .
 COM  Mon Jun 22 14:47:50 1998
Subject: Re: integrated delivery system 
From: Bill Bogstad <bogstad @
 pobox .

Chuq wrote:
>At 6:55 AM -0700 6/18/98, Rich Kulawiec wrote:
>> Hmmm.  That's 9 addresses per mailing list, which is going to mean
>> a heck of a lot of aliases for sites that operate hundreds of mailing lists.
>So? Is the idea a system easy for the user? Or the administrator? FWIW,
>my mail list setup uses an average of 23 aliases per list (including
>the -digest paired list). Some are admin or interface aliases. Some are
>things like list-subscribe and list-unsubscribe. And there are aliases
>covering the various places I've found users THINK might be an admin
>address -- better I do what I can to get them a reasonable response
>than slim things down and make it easier for me...

Summary: Chuq (rhetorically?) asks if we should make the system easy for
administrators or for users.

>> I'm not sure I see why this is a win over a single address for
>> list administration to which directives are sent.
>Two ways. First, it makes interfacing from a web site a LOT easier,
>since you can pretty easily write an interface that goes to
>list-subscribe/list-unsubscribe and save yourself a lot of custom
>hacking to make things work.

Summary: Chuq suggests doing things a certain way because it
makes it easier for administrators. ?????

> Second, you can simply embed the
>list-unsubscribe address into your messages to make it as painfully
>easy as you can for users to deal with your lists. Because with
>list-subscribe and list-unsubscribe, they dont' need ANY memorized mail
>list commands. and users, I've found, appreciate that.

As compared to memorized email addresses???  Is there a reason that it's
harder to embed a command to unsubscribe then it is an address to unsubscribe?

>I don't do this instead of the regular interface. I do it ON TOP of the
>regular interface. So I can add functionality ot make life easier for
>the users, without taking away anything from the folks who know the
>traditional interfaces...
>Seems like a no-loss situation.

Maybe.  Adding more frobs to the system does tend to increase user confusion.
It's not clear to me that from the user perspective that one is better then
the other.  No, I haven't done any surveys.  On the other hand, have you done
any surveys on people who mispelled the subscribe address, got bounced mail,
and then gave up.  With a single address, there is less that they ABSOLUTELY
have to get right and if they mispell the command you can send additional
information.  If your MTA bounces it before the list software runs, there
isn't much you can do.  Given that many lists now require confirmation of
subscriptions (and sometimes unsubscriptions), the user is going to have to go
to some work anyway.

				Bill Bogstad

|Internet: 2200-999-1!Bill .
 Bogstad @
 atbbs .
| Standard disclaimer: The views of this user are strictly his/her own.

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