[Theforum] quick change

Michele Foster michele at wordpro.on.ca
Wed May 8 13:05:54 CDT 2002


Adding my two cents to the various threads going on.

First of all let me say I am thoroughly disgusted by what I've seen go on in
the last 24 hours.

We've all learned a *very* valuable lesson.  That lesson being, attack,
spout bullshit, attack, insult, attack, demoralize, attack .. one person and
that person's decisions over and over again and eventually you'll get what
you want.  IOW, throw a two-year-old-style temper tantrum and all will be

Yes, Adrian, I am talking about you.. and you acting like a two year old.
Which I find rather disgusting.  You've admitted you wanted it changed, you
were determined that you *knew* the right answer.  Forget the fact that Dan
(and others) have spent over three years building software and managing the
lists.  *I, Adrian, know what's right.*  Forget the fact that Dan was
working on fixing the latest problems and was working on a solution to stop
the empty messages from coming through.  No, those fixes were not what
Adrian wanted.  Adrian wanted it fixed HIS way.  Without any care whatsoever
about the work that had and was still being done by others.  So, what does
Adrian do .. he fights back, he attacks, demoralizes and insults Dan over a
series of a dozen or so emails in a small span of two hours.  Yeah Adrian,
you got what you wanted, I hope you're happy now.

Let's back up a little bit and discuss the actual issues surrounding the
changes that were done to MajorGumbo.  The changes that Adrian found so very

First of all, ALL of Admin used to have the task to administer thelist.
This is before and after the Austin trip last year.  Take a wild guess how
many and which individuals actually DID the tasks?  (Dan of course could
provide the answer for sure, but I'll say 4 as a pretty good bet.)  Now, why
was that?  Definitely not because the other 16 Admins at the time didn't
have access.  No, it was because they didn't bother, or they figured other
people were looking after it.  Ok, that's fine, fair assessment, since there
*were* other individuals looking after the tasks.

Now before anyone pipes up and says that there wasn't really much to do
anyway, so why should *I* have bothered... let me try and explain how
thelist used to be managed before the most recent changes to MG were
introduced.  I won't bother with the excellent interface changes that Dan
implemented to the Administration section.  Those are awesome and work very
well and make it *SO* much easier to administer now.

Before Dan introduced the HTML auto-converted messages, on average there
were anywhere from 6 to 20 HTML emails that used to come through the system
on a daily basis.  The old MG used to hold them up.  The Administrators of
the list were then required to either reject the message outright (ouch) or
clean them up and forward them on to thelist.  I think we can all agree that
the "clean them up and forward them on" was the best approach for evolt.org
members.  Well, no maybe some individuals think it would be best to not
allow those people using email clients either incorrectly or that don't
support text only properly not be allowed to post.  Whatever.  That's what
used to happen, the messages were cleaned up and forwarded, either manually
or by a script that Matt created, which I never did figure out.  But it
worked well and made life easier for Matt and Dan who were the main ones
looking after forwarding the messages.

Does anyone remember the messages that used to come through with sigs
attached?  How some email clients insist on attaching the sigs?  Even entire
messages would come through as *attachments* from certain email clients.
What a nuisance that was.  For those that have been around a while, you'll
remember when the Admin list and thesite list allowed attachments to come
through.  Damned if thesite list didn't start getting hit by virus
attachments FROM list subscribers.  Even a few of those managed to make
their way through thelist also FROM list subscribers, which *was* locked
down to not allow any attachments.  Ok, so Dan had another problem he needed
to solve.  Which he solved, and continued to refine.

Some people didn't like the way in which he solved it, and in all fairness,
he was yesterday still continuing to refine it.  The latest refinement being
to stop the empty messages that only contained the [attachment deleted]
info.  The fact that MG now converted the messages to text where it could
meant that no one manually had to attempt to do it and it also had the added
benefit to delete all (most?) of the virus attempts.  Thankfully, even tho
the list management has changed this will still be the case and we can rest
assured that most (if not all) of the virus attempts will not end up on any
of the evolt.org lists, whether they come from a subscriber or not.

Also within the list management are keywords and email addresses which are
held for approval.  Most of the time all the offending messages get caught
and are not forwarded to thelist.  Unfortunately, the keywords from
yesterday's email weren't in the phrase list.  Thankfully, Seb wasn't fired
and hopefully no one else will be either.  Unfortunately Spam is the way of
life on the Internet.  Providing that person that sent that message was/is
not already a subscriber, then yes, I'll admit Adrian's solution to lock
down the list would work.  Interestingly enough though, no one's brought up
the point that ANYONE can subscribe to thelist, send out a message, then be
unsubscribed either on their own or by an administrator.  Does anyone really
think that we won't see ANY spam from now on just because we've locked
thelist down to subscribers only?  I've personally been on many other high
profile lists that got SPAM and such from subscribed people.

Now, how about those individuals that post from another address yet are
subscribed with a different address.  Or, even better how about those email
clients and ISP's that send out email and change the "from" lines
automatically?  Sure, Adrian can go through and add all those people to
thelist subscriber base and then set them to nomail.  How to handle the
"from" automatically being changed, I have no idea.  Maybe it will be as
simple as adding multiple addresses to the subscriber base.  I guess time
will tell.

I find it rather disturbing that Adrian and some other individuals did not
take Dan's responses and reasons for wanting to leave the subscription base
open.  What was the real problem?  Did you not understand the implications
of doing this?  Did you not care that it would affect many members, not just
a few as Adrian has continuously forced down our throats to believe?  Adrian
do *you* know the number of individuals affected?  Do *you* know how many
list members would post from many different accounts?  Do *you* know how
many list members/users wanted the ability to post from wherever when they
were having a quick problem and to be able to read the archives to get the
help they needed?  I know I personally have posted from my parents', my
sister's and several clients.  Especially when I was stuck on a problem.  I
was personally always grateful to be able to get the help that I needed
immediately to solve the problem at hand.  Now, I'll need to add whatever
address I need to post from to thelist subscriber base.

How are you (Adrian .. or we, evolt.org) going to have any kind of idea how
many list subscribers there really are?  How in the world are we (evolt.org)
ever going to hope to match those addresses with a userID on weo?  User
authentication for ueue was going to be difficult enough, now its going to
be damn near impossible.

I, personally, am filled with great sadness to know that this has not been
thought through well enough and all of the repercussions taken into
consideration.  I am also extremely disappointed that others refused to
listen to what Dan was saying.  Others refused to trust Dan on the issue and
let him continue to manage thelist the best way he can,  finding solutions
as needed to the problems at hand.

Some might think Dan wasn't listening to the membership.... sorry, but
unless you have those concrete numbers at hand, know how many people post
from different addresses under different circumstances, and how many
individuals' email clients represent their "from" addresses as something not
of the ordinary, then you are misinformed and not looking at the bigger

By assuming you (yes you Adrian) knew all the answers and knew how to fix
the problem and that you personally decided to make it your vendetta to get
the result you wanted, is insulting and demoralizing.  Instead of trusting
the person who has put his guts and soul into making the best listserv
software out there, you decided you knew what was best.  How do you expect
Dan to feel about it all?  btw, in case anyone suggests... these are MY
thoughts not Dan's.  I haven't even spoken to Dan yet about it all.

So, we've all learned a good lesson.  What's next?  I *hate* the way the
textareas are on weo.  Every time I visit weo, I'm going to bitch and
complain to thesite until those textareas are fixed to my liking.
Irregardless of the fact that those responsible for the CSS/Code on weo have
made excellent arguments why it can't be changed, I think its still a good
idea to attack those individuals until they change them to the way I want
them to be.  Yeah, I know I've got several other individuals that feel the
same way and I can spout that the person responsible for the above isn't
listening to the membership.  Yeah, bring it on!!  We all know temper
tantrums work very well.  :(

List Administration

Someone explain something to me please.  Why is it that not just a few weeks
ago I was personally blasted because I responded to a list membership email
as Dan gave me access (actually he never took it away, I just wasn't using
it)?  I've seen a call made for others to help Adrian administer thelist.
Ok, fair enough, but umm.. where was that decision made?  How come now it's
not an Admin Only Task just because Adrian's in charge of it?

Also, how does this affect the excellent progress that was being made on
thecharter list? How will this effect the Backend working group we've been
discussing over there?  Have we taken 10 steps backwards now?  It sure seems
like it to me.  Oh yeah, throw a temper tantrum and halt all progress.

Anyway, I've said more than enough.  If you've managed to read to the end of
this message, congrats, have a beer on me.

Thanks for your time


----- Original Message -----
From: "Elfur Logadottir" <elfur at elfur.is>

| > don't minimize his points by dismissing them as
| > retributive rhetoric.  That in itself is an arrogant stance and is in
| > itself is inflammatory.  Don't goad someone into a defensive position
| > and then slap them for being defensive.
| that wasn't my intention at all. I do understand that he's hurt. I do know
| that he feels like the emails are targeted to diminish him and his
| I simply was trying to suggest to him not to take it in like that.
| out that my perspective was that the intention was to slap the opinion and
| decision, but not the person. Because that's what i've known adrian and
| others to do in the past.

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