Span in the lists

Valeri Galtsev galtsev at
Sat Mar 5 18:32:23 UTC 2016

On Sat, March 5, 2016 11:50 am, Steve O'Hara-Smith wrote:
> On Sat, 5 Mar 2016 18:02:47 +0100
> Polytropon <freebsd at> wrote:
>> Are there maybe other situations where "no registration required" is
>> an important feature to have?
> 	Pure and simple ease of use, there are a lot of FreeBSD mailing
> lists, some of them very specialised.
> 	If I have a question or report appropriate to one of those then
> with the current conventions I can pop a mail to the list, expect to see
> the replies (reply to all is the convention) and not be bothered with
> anything else on the list but the one thing that drove me to seek contact
> with specialists.
> 	Going the other waY I'd have to susbcribe to the list, do
> the validation dance, send my question, see answers and all the other list
> traffic and eventually I'd have to unsubscribe. It's not a lot of work -
> but it's a big multiplier on sending a single email - especially if the
> reply is "try the guys in $otherlist".
> 	The current system is maximally convenient for the person who wants
> one-off access to experts. To me that seems to be the correct model for
> support mailing lists.
> 	Spam is the risk - and has been noted the incidence is low. I
> presume there are some very good spam filters on the list.

Yes, indeed, this all makes sense. Originally my opinion was the same as
that of OP of this thread (need to post: subscribe). But then I changed my
opinion, basically, deciding the FreeBSD mail list owners have their
reasons. This what you describe makes these reasons clear and transparent.
I have subscribed to several specialized FreeBSD mail lists, and in
addition to useful instructive posts and answers, I also receive "bug
reports" and similar "as assignee to the bug" which some of mail lists are
- assignees to bugs. So, I know exactly what you mean when you are saying
subscribers may get something they actually don't want to receive. (I
personally don't mind receiving that, so I keep being subscribed, and
learn from some, and just ignore other posts).

Anyway, I decided to chime in as an outsider who originally had the same
opinion as OP (original poster) of this thread, but then changed my
opinion, and decided: FreeBSD mail list owners _do_ know better, so I
better live with what they have.


Valeri Galtsev
Sr System Administrator
Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics
Kavli Institute for Cosmological Physics
University of Chicago
Phone: 773-702-4247

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