Topics

moderated #suggestion Need List-Post header in group messages #suggestion


Drew
 

PROBLEM. When responding to a group post with Thunderbird, and possibly other popular email programs, there is no easy way to reply "off list", i.e., directly to the author of a post. One must manually copy and paste the FROM header content of the received message to the TO header of the message being composed.

SOLUTION. Include a List-Post header (RFC2369) in group posts. Thunderbird, and possibly other software, will then provide the user with a "smart" option to respond either to the group or to the individual poster.

Many email lists use the List-Post header. Currently, subscribers to such mailing lists who assume the same response from Groups.io can inadvertently send privately intended messages to the group if not paying attention.

I also suggest that users of Yahoo, etc. mail could have their correct email address inserted in the List-Post header instead of the mangled address that must appear in the FROM field for DMARC approval.

FYI- here is a description of the List-Post header in RFC 2369 at https://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2369.txt

Quote-
3.4. List-Post

The List-Post field describes the method for posting to the list.
This is typically the address of the list, but MAY be a moderator, or
potentially some other form of submission. For the special case of a
list that does not allow posting (e.g., an announcements list), the
List-Post field may contain the special value "NO".

Examples:

List-Post: <mailto:list@...>
List-Post: <mailto:moderator@...> (Postings are Moderated)
List-Post: <mailto:moderator@...?subject=list%20posting>
List-Post: NO (posting not allowed on this list)
-unquote.

Thanks.
Drew


Drew
 

Correction- please remove the following:


I also suggest that users of Yahoo, etc. mail could have their correct email
address inserted in the List-Post header instead of the >mangled address that
must appear in the FROM field for DMARC approval.

That will not work.

Drew


On Tue, Dec 12, 2017 at 01:19 pm, Drew AF2Z wrote:


PROBLEM. When responding to a group post with Thunderbird, and possibly other
popular email programs, there is no easy way to reply "off list", i.e.,
directly to the author of a post. One must manually copy and paste the FROM
header content of the received message to the TO header of the message being
composed.

SOLUTION. Include a List-Post header (RFC2369) in group posts. Thunderbird,
and possibly other software, will then provide the user with a "smart" option
to respond either to the group or to the individual poster.

Many email lists use the List-Post header. Currently, subscribers to such
mailing lists who assume the same response from Groups.io can inadvertently
send privately intended messages to the group if not paying attention.

I also suggest that users of Yahoo, etc. mail could have their correct email
address inserted in the List-Post header instead of the mangled address that
must appear in the FROM field for DMARC approval.

FYI- here is a description of the List-Post header in RFC 2369 at
https://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2369.txt

Quote-
3.4. List-Post

The List-Post field describes the method for posting to the list.
This is typically the address of the list, but MAY be a moderator, or
potentially some other form of submission. For the special case of a
list that does not allow posting (e.g., an announcements list), the
List-Post field may contain the special value "NO".

Examples:

List-Post: <mailto:list@...>
List-Post: <mailto:moderator@...> (Postings are Moderated)
List-Post: <mailto:moderator@...?subject=list%20posting>
List-Post: NO (posting not allowed on this list)
-unquote.

Thanks.
Drew


 

Hi Drew,

I've added List-Post headers to all group emails. The header just is a mailto to the group address.

Cheers,
Mark

On Tue, Dec 12, 2017 at 1:19 PM, Drew AF2Z <pubx1@...> wrote:
PROBLEM. When responding to a group post with Thunderbird, and possibly other popular email programs, there is no easy way to reply "off list", i.e., directly to the author of a post. One must manually copy and paste the FROM header content of the received message to the TO header of the message being composed.

SOLUTION. Include a List-Post header (RFC2369) in group posts. Thunderbird, and possibly other software, will then provide the user with a "smart" option to respond either to the group or to the individual poster.

Many email lists use the List-Post header. Currently, subscribers to such mailing lists who assume the same response from Groups.io can inadvertently send privately intended messages to the group if not paying attention.

I also suggest that users of Yahoo, etc. mail could have their correct email address inserted in the List-Post header instead of the mangled address that must appear in the FROM field for DMARC approval.

FYI- here is a description of the List-Post header in RFC 2369 at https://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2369.txt

Quote-
3.4. List-Post

   The List-Post field describes the method for posting to the list.
   This is typically the address of the list, but MAY be a moderator, or
   potentially some other form of submission. For the special case of a
   list that does not allow posting (e.g., an announcements list), the
   List-Post field may contain the special value "NO".

   Examples:

     List-Post: <mailto:list@...>
     List-Post: <mailto:moderator@...> (Postings are Moderated)
     List-Post: <mailto:moderator@...?subject=list%20posting>
     List-Post: NO (posting not allowed on this list)
-unquote.

Thanks.
Drew





Drew
 

Thanks, Mark- great!

I now see the "Reply" and "Reply List" buttons in Thunderbird for group posts. Now we can tell members to "take it off list" when necessary.

Drew

On 12/14/17 13:06, Mark Fletcher wrote:
Hi Drew,
I've added List-Post headers to all group emails. The header just is a mailto to the group address.
Cheers,
Mark
On Tue, Dec 12, 2017 at 1:19 PM, Drew AF2Z <@af2z <mailto:@af2z>> wrote:
PROBLEM. When responding to a group post with Thunderbird, and
possibly other popular email programs, there is no easy way to reply
"off list", i.e., directly to the author of a post. One must
manually copy and paste the FROM header content of the received
message to the TO header of the message being composed.
SOLUTION. Include a List-Post header (RFC2369) in group posts.
Thunderbird, and possibly other software, will then provide the user
with a "smart" option to respond either to the group or to the
individual poster.
Many email lists use the List-Post header. Currently, subscribers to
such mailing lists who assume the same response from Groups.io can
inadvertently send privately intended messages to the group if not
paying attention.
I also suggest that users of Yahoo, etc. mail could have their
correct email address inserted in the List-Post header instead of
the mangled address that must appear in the FROM field for DMARC
approval.
FYI- here is a description of the List-Post header in RFC 2369 at
https://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2369.txt
<https://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc2369.txt>
Quote-
3.4. List-Post
   The List-Post field describes the method for posting to the list.
   This is typically the address of the list, but MAY be a
moderator, or
   potentially some other form of submission. For the special case of a
   list that does not allow posting (e.g., an announcements list), the
   List-Post field may contain the special value "NO".
   Examples:
     List-Post: <mailto:list@... <mailto:list@...>>
     List-Post: <mailto:moderator@...
<mailto:moderator@...>> (Postings are Moderated)
     List-Post: <mailto:moderator@...
<mailto:moderator@...>?subject=list%20posting>
     List-Post: NO (posting not allowed on this list)
-unquote.
Thanks.
Drew


 

Mark, Drew,

I've added List-Post headers to all group emails. The header just is a
mailto to the group address.
Please undo this. Or give me some form of work-around.

That changed the behavior of Ctrl+R in Thunderbird - it now replies to the sender instead of the list, overriding the intent and function of having the group's Reply To set to "Group".

This is going to break decades of muscle memory for me, and no doubt cause innumerable mysteries when I unwittingly reply to the sender rather than the group.

Ctrl+Shift+R still replies to both sender and group, but that's almost never what I want to do.

Shal


Drew
 

Shal,

Ctrl+R is defined by Mozilla as "Reply to Sender Only". It now has this function for Groups.io, which admittedly is not what you want.

"Reply to List" is Ctrl+Shift+L

There is a keyboard shortcut customizing addon for Thunderbird called keyconfig. I have used it for other purposes but you can use it to swap Ctrl+Shift+L and Ctrl+R.

Drew

On 12/14/17 15:03, Shal Farley wrote:
Mark, Drew,

> I've added List-Post headers to all group emails. The header just is a
> mailto to the group address.
Please undo this. Or give me some form of work-around.
That changed the behavior of Ctrl+R in Thunderbird - it now replies to the sender instead of the list, overriding the intent and function of having the group's Reply To set to "Group".
This is going to break decades of muscle memory for me, and no doubt cause innumerable mysteries when I unwittingly reply to the sender rather than the group.
Ctrl+Shift+R still replies to both sender and group, but that's almost never what I want to do.
Shal


 

Drew,

Ctrl+R is defined by Mozilla as "Reply to Sender Only".

Not exactly.

The Reply button and Ctrl+R have always respected the Reply-To: header field, which is how groups have implemented the Reply To setting to direct replies in accordance with the group's needs. To have them suddenly stop respecting Reply-To is a bit of a shock. Maybe I should consider that a Thunderbird bug.

"Reply to List" is Ctrl+Shift+L

There is a keyboard shortcut customizing addon for Thunderbird called keyconfig. I have used it for other purposes but you can use it to swap Ctrl+Shift+L and Ctrl+R.

I may give that a try. I hope it doesn't break the function of Ctrl+R in other lists, or in non-list messages.

I haven't tested other email interfaces, but I do note that Gmail's web interface seems to have ignored the List-Post header.

Shal



 

Drew, Shal,

I don't use Thunderbird, and AFAIK List-Post has no effect on any other email client. So I don't have a pony in this race. I'll leave it up to you two to figure out if the header should stay in or not. I will say that in the absence of an agreement, I would default to reverting to the behavior we've had the last 3 years (ie no List-Post). Mailman does add List-Post. Yahoo Groups does not. I don't know about Google Groups.

Thanks,
Mark

On Thu, Dec 14, 2017 at 1:58 PM, Shal Farley <shals2nd@...> wrote:
Drew,

Ctrl+R is defined by Mozilla as "Reply to Sender Only".

Not exactly.

The Reply button and Ctrl+R have always respected the Reply-To: header field, which is how groups have implemented the Reply To setting to direct replies in accordance with the group's needs. To have them suddenly stop respecting Reply-To is a bit of a shock. Maybe I should consider that a Thunderbird bug.

"Reply to List" is Ctrl+Shift+L

There is a keyboard shortcut customizing addon for Thunderbird called keyconfig. I have used it for other purposes but you can use it to swap Ctrl+Shift+L and Ctrl+R.

I may give that a try. I hope it doesn't break the function of Ctrl+R in other lists, or in non-list messages.

I haven't tested other email interfaces, but I do note that Gmail's web interface seems to have ignored the List-Post header.

Shal




Drew
 

Shal,

Here is the Thunderbird keyboard shortcuts:
https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/keyboard-shortcuts

Ctrl+R is "Reply to Message (sender only)"

Ctrl+Shift+L is "Reply to List"


Without the List-Post header there is NO option in Thunderbird (short of manually copy & pasting addresses) to reply to the sender.

Also, without List-Post there is the potential error of sending private email to the group for people who are used to the standard mailing list implementation of the "Reply" button (i.e., Reply to Sender Only). This generally has worse consequences than sending a group reply to the sender only. TB does inform you with a hover popup, but as you mentioned about muscle memory, people are accustomed to hitting that first Reply button without looking.

Regarding the keyconfig addon for TB-- it won't break anything. You can assign any arbitrary keyboard sequence you like to any of the listed TB functions, so long as the sequence is not already in use.

Drew

On 12/14/17 16:58, Shal Farley wrote:
Drew,
Ctrl+R is defined by Mozilla as "Reply to Sender Only".
Not exactly.
The Reply button and Ctrl+R have always respected the Reply-To: header field, which is how groups have implemented the Reply To setting to direct replies in accordance with the group's needs. To have them suddenly stop respecting Reply-To is a bit of a shock. Maybe I should consider that a Thunderbird bug.
"Reply to List" is Ctrl+Shift+L
There is a keyboard shortcut customizing addon for Thunderbird
called keyconfig. I have used it for other purposes but you can use
it to swap Ctrl+Shift+L and Ctrl+R.
I may give that a try. I hope it doesn't break the function of Ctrl+R in other lists, or in non-list messages.
I haven't tested other email interfaces, but I do note that Gmail's web interface seems to have ignored the List-Post header.
Shal


Walter Underwood
 

I don’t see a List-Post header in the e-mail I get from Google Groups.

wunder
Walter Underwood
wunder@...
http://observer.wunderwood.org/  (my blog)


On Dec 14, 2017, at 2:43 PM, Mark Fletcher <markf@corp.groups.io> wrote:

Drew, Shal,

I don't use Thunderbird, and AFAIK List-Post has no effect on any other email client. So I don't have a pony in this race. I'll leave it up to you two to figure out if the header should stay in or not. I will say that in the absence of an agreement, I would default to reverting to the behavior we've had the last 3 years (ie no List-Post). Mailman does add List-Post. Yahoo Groups does not. I don't know about Google Groups.

Thanks,
Mark

On Thu, Dec 14, 2017 at 1:58 PM, Shal Farley <shals2nd@...> wrote:
Drew,

Ctrl+R is defined by Mozilla as "Reply to Sender Only".

Not exactly.

The Reply button and Ctrl+R have always respected the Reply-To: header field, which is how groups have implemented the Reply To setting to direct replies in accordance with the group's needs. To have them suddenly stop respecting Reply-To is a bit of a shock. Maybe I should consider that a Thunderbird bug.

"Reply to List" is Ctrl+Shift+L

There is a keyboard shortcut customizing addon for Thunderbird called keyconfig. I have used it for other purposes but you can use it to swap Ctrl+Shift+L and Ctrl+R.

I may give that a try. I hope it doesn't break the function of Ctrl+R in other lists, or in non-list messages.

I haven't tested other email interfaces, but I do note that Gmail's web interface seems to have ignored the List-Post header.

Shal









 

[Dang. Bitten by the very "bug" under discussion. This was intended to be on-list]

Drew,

Ctrl+R is "Reply to Message (sender only)"
Sounds like a bug in Thunderbird or its documentation then, because "sender only" certainly isn't what either the Reply button or Ctrl+R does when a Reply-To field is present but without the List-Post header field.

I'd actually suggest that with List-Post present they should have added both a "Reply List" and a "Reply Sender" button, and left the meaning of the plain "Reply" button and Ctrl+R alone.

And maybe with a Reply-To field, even absent the List-Post field, they should have added a "Reply Sender" button anyway - as an easy way to bypass the "Reply-To" field.

Without the List-Post header there is NO option in Thunderbird (short
of manually copy & pasting addresses) to reply to the sender.
That's true in any other mail user interface. Well, "most" other interfaces - Thunderbird may not be actually unique in supporting the List-Post field.

But I do understand your point, it is more convenient and likely less error-prone to have a function specifically for the purpose. I just maintain that it shouldn't be the ambiguously named "Reply", nor should List-Post change the meaning of "Reply".

TB does inform you with a hover popup, but as you mentioned about
muscle memory, people are accustomed to hitting that first Reply
button without looking.
For me it is much worse than that - it isn't that I reach for the button and click without looking, it is that there is no hover text or other cue possible for a keyboard shortcut like Ctrl+R. My attention at that moment is entirely focused on the content of the message, without distraction by the placement or appearance of UI elements.

Regarding the keyconfig addon for TB-- it won't break anything.
Well, yes actually it will. Mapping Ctrl+R to "Reply List" will break it for every message that isn't from Groups.io or Mailman - at least judging by the behavior of Ctrl+Shift+L - it is ignored. That would be far worse for me.

Shal


 

Mark,

So I don't have a pony in this race. I'll leave it up to you two to
figure out if the header should stay in or not.
I'm ambivalent now, so perhaps leave it in place during your vacation and we'll see what other information shakes out.

Mailman does add List-Post.
That's one of the things making me ambivalent.

It turns out that several of the lists I read at work use Mailman, and in the last few months I've transitioned to using the current build of Thunderbird at work. I haven't replied to any of those lists since moving to Tbird, but now I understand better some of the behavior of other list members (who often Reply-All rather than strictly to the list).

So maybe this old dog will have to learn a new trick. But man, is it hard to break a 25+ year habit of typing Ctrl+R to reply (list or not). Even this message I had to cancel and start again because I typed Ctrl+R by reflex.

Shal


Duane
 

On Thu, Dec 14, 2017 at 02:50 pm, Drew AF2Z wrote:
TB does inform you with a hover popup
I don't see the "(sender only)" part, just "Reply to the message" when hovering on Thunderbird.  I don't use it for groups anyway, but wanted to verify the operation.

Duane


Duane
 

It looks like this needs to be reversed until Thunderbird quits changing expected actions.  With this header installed, it breaks the "Reply to Group" setting because most people use Reply, not even realizing there's a "Reply to List" option.  I've gotten complaints from 3 people so far.

I also found that Thunderbird isn't even sure how they want to handle this.  From the Release Notes for TB 52.0: "When replying to a mailing list, reply will be sent to address in From header ignoring Reply-to header"  I suspect that's what's breaking our settings here.

Duane


Jeremy H
 

Checking the Thunderbird release notes, in those for Thunderbird 52.4 I see:
In Thunderbird 52 a new behavior was introduced for replies to mailing list posts: "When replying to a mailing list, reply will be sent to address in From header ignoring Reply-to header". A new preference mail.override_list_reply_to allows to restore the previous behavior.
And in the Thunderbird fora there has been a fair amount of discussion: see


 

Jeremy,

And in the Thunderbird fora there has been a fair amount of
discussion: see ... which seem to be the major threads.
Thanks!

The tl;dr summary is that Tbird seems to think the issue has been resolved by publishing a config option to restore Reply behavior (respect Reply-To even in the presence of List-Post).

There are two problems with that.

1) the default is still to have Reply behavior broken - out of step with every other email user interface.

2) with the config option changed Reply and Reply Sender both reply to the group - undoing the benefit Drew originally sought (to make it easy to Reply to Sender instead of the group).

Apparently the practice of every list I'm aware of, to use Reply-To to alter the behavior of Reply, is referred to as "Reply-To munging" and is considered bad practice by a vocal contingent. So that's where the idea came from that Tbird should ignore Reply-To if it is munged and if List-Post is present.

However, in so doing Tbird is going against the original RFCs for email, decades of their own precedent in prior versions of Tbird, and the accepted practice of every other email user interface. That seems like a pretty immense mistake to me.

A much simpler answer would have been for Tbird to supply a "Reply Sender" button whenever the Reply-To is munged. That would have provided an easy (and intuitive) means to reply to the From address when desired, without breaking the conventional behavior of Reply.

I'd have to dig deeper, but it doesn't seem like anyone has suggested that idea yet.

Shal


 

Duane,

It looks like this needs to be reversed until Thunderbird quits
changing expected actions.
I now agree.

Having read through the items cited by Jeremy it is clear to me that the Tbird programmers have made an huge unforced error, but believe it to be correct and are marking it "WONTFIX".

Apologies to Drew, but I think Groups.io should revisit this issue if and when Tbird gets its head straight about the validity of using Reply-To to control the default Reply in lists.

From the Release Notes for TB 52.0: "When replying to a mailing
list, reply will be sent to address in From header ignoring Reply-to
header" I suspect that's what's breaking our settings here.
That's exactly correct.

Instead, I think they should have supplied a "Reply Sender" button to allow the member to make an explicitly different choice from the group's default.

Shal


 

Hi All,

Thanks for investigating this further. I have removed the List-Post header, at least for now.

Thanks,
Mark

On Sat, Dec 16, 2017 at 5:15 PM, Shal Farley <shals2nd@...> wrote:
Duane,

> It looks like this needs to be reversed until Thunderbird quits
> changing expected actions.

I now agree.

Having read through the items cited by Jeremy it is clear to me that the Tbird programmers have made an huge unforced error, but believe it to be correct and are marking it "WONTFIX".

Apologies to Drew, but I think Groups.io should revisit this issue if and when Tbird gets its head straight about the validity of using Reply-To to control the default Reply in lists.

> From the Release Notes for TB 52.0: "When replying to a mailing
> list, reply will be sent to address in From header ignoring Reply-to
> header"  I suspect that's what's breaking our settings here.

That's exactly correct.

Instead, I think they should have supplied a "Reply Sender" button to allow the member to make an explicitly different choice from the group's default.

Shal





 

Thanks Mark!

...I thought you were on vacation? 😏 ...


Ginny T.
 

Thanks for rolling back the List-Post header, Mark. I know it shouldn't have to fall to you, but thank you.
Ginny
--
Ginny T.  gttemari21@...
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