[BALUG-Admin] successful BALUG boiler plates (unsubscribe, job posting inquiry)

Rick Moen rick@linuxmafia.com
Tue Apr 19 13:06:26 PDT 2016

Quoting Michael Paoli (Michael.Paoli@cal.berkeley.edu):

> Not surprisingly, I'd gotten rather tied of the various "unsubscribe
> me" requests that were typically sent to me, or sending or Reply-To
> address I'd used, or to the list, or to one of the BALUG contact
> addresses, etc.  Most specifically the bone-headed, naive, ignorant,
> lazy, and/or "demanding" emails of that nature.  And, I also got rather
> tired and annoyed with having to actually think about it, assemble the
> information, reply, include relevant links and information, etc.

Yes.  Most if not all of my own FAQ items have arisen from the 'Hmm,
I've now answered this question three times; I need to have a canned
response for the future' experience.

Part of what I find surprising is that this part sufficed:

  o FULL EMAIL HEADERS of an example message that you're getting or still
    getting that you're trying to unsubscribe from.

I would have guesstimated that users having this problem are unaware of
their MUAs' truncation of headers, so the phrase 'full e-mail headers'
wouldn't mean much to them.  In fact, I distinctly recall users sending
back truncated headers in the belief of those being the full headers.

Not wanting to interfere with success, but if I'd written the
boilerplate, *I* might have elaborated about probable need to hunt for a
'show full headers' or 'show source', etc. command.

But then, OTOH:

  Moen's Law of Documentation
  "The more you write, the less they read."


Full headers are sometimes key, e.g., in cases where they reveal that
the user subscribed using a different address that is aliased to the
user's current address, and forgot about having done so.

The latter syndrome often is also at the bottom of subscribers' postings
ending up in admin queues.  Recently, I helped a guy posting to the
main SVLUG list from a redhat.com work address by approving his post and
sending a Mailman 'invitation' with a suggestion to subscribe this
_additional_ address and set it to have the 'no mail' attribute so the
user continues to get just one copy.  He did so, and wrote back his
thanks with the explanation that he'd forgotten having originally
subscribed from his fedoraproject.com address, which is aliased to his
work address.

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