unsubscription instructions

"Perry E. Metzger" <perry@piermont.com> Thu, 15 July 1999 18:10 UTC

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Subject: unsubscription instructions
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From: "Perry E. Metzger" <perry@piermont.com>
Date: Thu, 15 Jul 1999 14:05:32 -0400
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Re: whether to include unsubscription instructions in every message:

In summary, my opinion used to be "no" but now is "yes."

The "users@ipv6.org" mailing list gets at least ten messages directed
at it every day saying "subscribe", in spite of the fact that the only 
place the list is publicized has explicit, clear, LOUD instructions
saying to send mail to majordomo. Luckily, the list has a filter that
catches such things before they bother the readership. 

In spite of all attempts to educate the users, "unsubscribe" messages
began to hit in the same way.

Realizing that it was easier to switch than fight, I decided, with
considerable reluctance, to make that list put a footer on every
message saying how to unsubscribe. It is just two lines long, but it
helps a lot. I *still* get messages from people directed to the wrong
place, mind you (they are mostly caught by the list's filters) but the
number is dramatically lower.

Majordomo, which is used (I believe) for the IETF's mailing list, has
a built in feature to let you do this. As much as I hate admitting we
live in an age where "internet engineers" can't figure out how to
unsubscribe from a mailing list they subscribed to in the first place,
I now believe it would not be entirely unreasonable to turn the
feature on. It will only take a minute or two of someone's time.