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locked Group transfers


 

Hi All,

Happy 2015! Now that the holidays are over, I'll be able to get back to serious development work.

I've been trying to think of ways to make transfers of existing groups to Groups.io easier. My problem with having direct add of members generally available is that it tends to get abused and Groups.io gets labeled a spammer. But I want to make it easy to transfer groups over. 

If someone can prove to me that they own an existing group, I think that's enough of a bar to permit their members to be added directly. So, here's an idea:

- Create the new group at Groups.io
- Change the description of your existing group to include a link to the new group at Groups.io. Something like "This group has moved to https://groups.io/org/groupsio/GROUPNAME".
- Email the member list and a link to the old group to a support account I'll set up.
- I'll verify that the old group's description has been changed, and directly add the members to the new group.

What do you think?

Thanks,
Mark


Frances
 

Wow! Perfect.

I was wondering how to get my reluctant extended family to move from YahooGroups to Groups.io.
The good news for me - my son who objects to off-topic stuff is happy with the controls he will have with Groups.io.

Frances


Cacky B
 

Sounds good. At least it allows you to have some control of the process.
Cacky

On 1/3/2015 12:51 PM, Mark Fletcher wrote:
Hi All,

Happy 2015! Now that the holidays are over, I'll be able to get back to serious development work.

I've been trying to think of ways to make transfers of existing groups to Groups.io easier. My problem with having direct add of members generally available is that it tends to get abused and Groups.io gets labeled a spammer. But I want to make it easy to transfer groups over. 

If someone can prove to me that they own an existing group, I think that's enough of a bar to permit their members to be added directly. So, here's an idea:

- Create the new group at Groups.io
- Change the description of your existing group to include a link to the new group at Groups.io. Something like "This group has moved to https://groups.io/org/groupsio/GROUPNAME".
- Email the member list and a link to the old group to a support account I'll set up.
- I'll verify that the old group's description has been changed, and directly add the members to the new group.

What do you think?

Thanks,
Mark




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Linda
 

Hi Mark,
I love the way you're thinking!  I'm just worried that Yahoo might stumble upon the new description and close down the group completely, thereby deleting the archives.  Wish there was an easy way to transfer the archives over too...
 
Thanks!
Linda

Sent: Saturday, January 03, 2015 1:51 PM
Subject: [beta] Group transfers

Hi All,

Happy 2015! Now that the holidays are over, I'll be able to get back to serious development work.

I've been trying to think of ways to make transfers of existing groups to Groups.io easier. My problem with having direct add of members generally available is that it tends to get abused and Groups.io gets labeled a spammer. But I want to make it easy to transfer groups over. 

If someone can prove to me that they own an existing group, I think that's enough of a bar to permit their members to be added directly. So, here's an idea:

- Create the new group at Groups.io
- Change the description of your existing group to include a link to the new group at Groups.io. Something like "This group has moved to https://groups.io/org/groupsio/GROUPNAME".
- Email the member list and a link to the old group to a support account I'll set up.
- I'll verify that the old group's description has been changed, and directly add the members to the new group.

What do you think?

Thanks,
Mark


Marlin47
 


Mark, I can think of one problem, how can you add the members to the group without typing each and every email address, one at a time?

It used to be that you could export a membership list from Yahoogroups, I have done it several times to compare a list to a list from a year ago to see who had joined, who had left.

But, now when I try it, it does not seem to work.

Last week when I tried it, I could not download a list at all.

Not sure if it was just a glitch but, that could be a real problem.

Marlin




On 1/3/2015 12:51 PM, Mark Fletcher wrote:


If someone can prove to me that they own an existing group, I think that's enough of a bar to permit their members to be added directly. So, here's an idea:

- Create the new group at Groups.io
- Change the description of your existing group to include a link to the new group at Groups.io. Something like "This group has moved to https://groups.io/org/groupsio/GROUPNAME".
- Email the member list and a link to the old group to a support account I'll set up.
- I'll verify that the old group's description has been changed, and directly add the members to the new group.

What do you think?

Thanks,
Mark
_._,_._,


Marlin47
 



I can think of another problem.

In the process of proving to you that a person is an owner of an existing group, how would you distinguish between whether the person is actually the owner or just a moderator?

If you would send a message to the     -owner    address expecting a reply from the owner proving that he received that message as the owner, I would point out to you that all the moderators also receive those messages.

I would bet that there are countless numbers of groups where there are moderators who would just love to steal the group from the owner.

That would be a slick way to do it.

I have a suggestion, but, it would mean more work for you, if you think this would be a problem.

Marlin





On 1/3/2015 12:51 PM, Mark Fletcher wrote:
Hi All,

Happy 2015! Now that the holidays are over, I'll be able to get back to serious development work.

I've been trying to think of ways to make transfers of existing groups to Groups.io easier. My problem with having direct add of members generally available is that it tends to get abused and Groups.io gets labeled a spammer. But I want to make it easy to transfer groups over. 

If someone can prove to me that they own an existing group, I think that's enough of a bar to permit their members to be added directly. So, here's an idea:

- Create the new group at Groups.io
- Change the description of your existing group to include a link to the new group at Groups.io. Something like "This group has moved to https://groups.io/org/groupsio/GROUPNAME".
- Email the member list and a link to the old group to a support account I'll set up.
- I'll verify that the old group's description has been changed, and directly add the members to the new group.

What do you think?

Thanks,
Mark


Judy F.
 

If you go to the Yahoo Group Moderators option in Management/Manage members, all of the moderators and owner appear there with a crown that is Blue for the owner, green for the Moderators.  It includes the email address for the owner and moderator which of course are different for each.

 

Judy F.

SW Florida - USA

 

From: Marlin47@... [mailto:Marlin47@...]
Sent: Saturday, January 03, 2015 2:16 PM
To: beta@groups.io
Subject: Re: [beta] Group transfers

 



I can think of another problem.

In the process of proving to you that a person is an owner of an existing group, how would you distinguish between whether the person is actually the owner or just a moderator?

If you would send a message to the     -owner    address expecting a reply from the owner proving that he received that message as the owner, I would point out to you that all the moderators also receive those messages.

I would bet that there are countless numbers of groups where there are moderators who would just love to steal the group from the owner.

That would be a slick way to do it.

I have a suggestion, but, it would mean more work for you, if you think this would be a problem.

Marlin





On 1/3/2015 12:51 PM, Mark Fletcher wrote:

Hi All,

 

Happy 2015! Now that the holidays are over, I'll be able to get back to serious development work.

 

I've been trying to think of ways to make transfers of existing groups to Groups.io easier. My problem with having direct add of members generally available is that it tends to get abused and Groups.io gets labeled a spammer. But I want to make it easy to transfer groups over. 

 

If someone can prove to me that they own an existing group, I think that's enough of a bar to permit their members to be added directly. So, here's an idea:

 

- Create the new group at Groups.io

- Change the description of your existing group to include a link to the new group at Groups.io. Something like "This group has moved to https://groups.io/org/groupsio/GROUPNAME".

- Email the member list and a link to the old group to a support account I'll set up.

- I'll verify that the old group's description has been changed, and directly add the members to the new group.

 

What do you think?

 

Thanks,

Mark

 


Frances
 

Hi

When you say send the member list, would a TSV or CSV file work? I just tried and YahooGroups will allow this for up to 1000 names. 

Also once you have moved the members, will they get an email automatically saying that they must create a password, etc.? Or do we need to ask them to create Groups.io accounts first?

Thanks.

Frances

On Jan 3 15, at 3:36 PM, J. Faulkner <jfaulkner44@...> wrote:

If you go to the Yahoo Group Moderators option in Management/Manage members, all of the moderators and owner appear there with a crown that is Blue for the owner, green for the Moderators.  It includes the email address for the owner and moderator which of course are different for each.
 
Judy F.
SW Florida - USA
 
From: Marlin47@... [mailto:Marlin47@...] 
Sent: Saturday, January 03, 2015 2:16 PM
To: beta@groups.io
Subject: Re: [beta] Group transfers
 


I can think of another problem.

In the process of proving to you that a person is an owner of an existing group, how would you distinguish between whether the person is actually the owner or just a moderator?

If you would send a message to the     -owner    address expecting a reply from the owner proving that he received that message as the owner, I would point out to you that all the moderators also receive those messages.

I would bet that there are countless numbers of groups where there are moderators who would just love to steal the group from the owner.

That would be a slick way to do it.

I have a suggestion, but, it would mean more work for you, if you think this would be a problem.

Marlin





On 1/3/2015 12:51 PM, Mark Fletcher wrote:
Hi All, 
 
Happy 2015! Now that the holidays are over, I'll be able to get back to serious development work.
 
I've been trying to think of ways to make transfers of existing groups to Groups.io easier. My problem with having direct add of members generally available is that it tends to get abused and Groups.io gets labeled a spammer. But I want to make it easy to transfer groups over. 
 
If someone can prove to me that they own an existing group, I think that's enough of a bar to permit their members to be added directly. So, here's an idea:
 
- Create the new group at Groups.io
- Change the description of your existing group to include a link to the new group at Groups.io. Something like "This group has moved to https://groups.io/org/groupsio/GROUPNAME".
- Email the member list and a link to the old group to a support account I'll set up.
- I'll verify that the old group's description has been changed, and directly add the members to the new group.
 
What do you think?
 
Thanks,
Mark
 



Marlin47
 

On 1/3/2015 3:02 PM, Frances wrote:
Hi

When you say send the member list, would a TSV or CSV file work? I just tried and YahooGroups will allow this for up to 1000 names.


It used to be that when I downloaded the members list, all it sent back to me was the email addresses of the members, all in� a vertical column, with none of the other garbage.

Can you still download a list like that?







Also once you have moved the members, will they get an email automatically saying that they must create a password, etc.? Or do we need to ask them to create Groups.io accounts first?

Thanks.

Frances



Marlin47
 

On 1/3/2015 3:10 PM, Marlin47@... wrote:
On 1/3/2015 3:02 PM, Frances wrote:
Hi

When you say send the member list, would a TSV or CSV file work? I just tried and YahooGroups will allow this for up to 1000 names.


It used to be that when I downloaded the members list, all it sent back to me was the email addresses of the members, all in� a vertical column, with none of the other garbage.

Can you still download a list like that?




I don't know what all the characters are in that text I just sent, in green, between the word�� "in"� and the word� "a".

I looked at my "sent" message and it is just a single space between the words, nothing more, but, somehow it got interpreted into characters I do not even know how to send.








Also once you have moved the members, will they get an email automatically saying that they must create a password, etc.? Or do we need to ask them to create Groups.io accounts first?

Thanks.

Frances




Frances
 

Hi

Exporting as CSV gave me a nice spreadsheet. I have a small group though. BTW, I use Mac products - Numbers.

Frances

On Jan 3 15, at 4:20 PM, Marlin47@... wrote:

On 1/3/2015 3:10 PM, Marlin47@... wrote:
On 1/3/2015 3:02 PM, Frances wrote:
Hi

When you say send the member list, would a TSV or CSV file work? I just tried and YahooGroups will allow this for up to 1000 names.


It used to be that when I downloaded the members list, all it sent back to me was the email addresses of the members, all in� a vertical column, with none of the other garbage.

Can you still download a list like that?




I don't know what all the characters are in that text I just sent, in green, between the word�� "in"� and the word� "a".

I looked at my "sent" message and it is just a single space between the words, nothing more, but, somehow it got interpreted into characters I do not even know how to send.








Also once you have moved the members, will they get an email automatically saying that they must create a password, etc.? Or do we need to ask them to create Groups.io accounts first?

Thanks.

Frances





 

Mark,

A couple quibbles:

- Email the member list and a link to the old group to a support account
I'll set up.
- I'll verify that the old group's description has been changed, and
directly add the members to the new group.
While this method verifies that you're in contact with an owner (or sufficiently privileged moderator) of a group, you have no verification that the addresses provided actually come from the membership list of that group. In that sense it is only marginally better than an open Add policy.

Also, that doesn't scale-up very well; I imagine you'll get pretty tired of this chore after a few score groups.

What do you think?
Perhaps have the list owner create a temporary Yahoo Account, make it a moderator or owner of the old group, and then provide you with the sign-in credentials of that account (probably better via a web page than email?). With those credentials you can have automation sign in to the group and download the members list directly.

There's a chrome application which is able to download the entire list (ignoring the limit of 1000 members imposed by Yahoo's user interface). It relies on an API call, which may be reasonably reliable.
http://yahoogroupedia.pbworks.com/Chrome+Application+to+Download+Members


-- Shal


 

Marlin,

It used to be that you could export a membership list from Yahoogroups,
I have done it several times to compare a list to a list from a year ago
to see who had joined, who had left.

But, now when I try it, it does not seem to work.
If you're willing to use the Chrome browser you can try this application which is able to download the entire list (ignoring the limit of 1000 members imposed by Yahoo's user interface). It still seems to work for my groups.
http://yahoogroupedia.pbworks.com/Chrome+Application+to+Download+Members

Of course, you need to be a moderator in the group to get the email addresses.

-- Shal


 

Marlin,

In the process of proving to you that a person is an owner of an
existing group, how would you distinguish between whether the person is
actually the owner or just a moderator?
In Yahoo Groups there's very little distinction between an owner and a fully privileged moderator.

I would bet that there are countless numbers of groups where there are
moderators who would just love to steal the group from the owner.
Perhaps, but in such cases the owner would need to have limited those moderators' privileges just to retain control of the group. If the owner didn't give the moderator the privilege to change group settings then that moderator wouldn't be able to make the change to the description Mark proposed. And an owner that suspected that a moderator might want to steal the group wouldn't likely give the moderator that much privilege.

-- Shal


 

Marlin,

I don't know what all the characters are in that text I just sent, in
green, between the word�� "in"� and the word� "a".
It was probably a non-breaking space, originally.

You have Thunderbird set to encode your outbound messages in the Windows-1252 character set. One cure for that would be to set it to UTF-8, which will work better with most web sites and email systems (but work poorly with some legacy email systems, such as my Eudora Classic).

When seen by a system expecting UTF-8 that turned into the unicode Replacement Character - a white question mark inside a black diamond - a character used to replace an invalid UTF-8 sequence. That's what shows in the View Source view of your message in the Archives.

Then, that replacement character, seen in a system expecting Windows-1252 or one of the ISO character sets, would look like three symbols from the top of the character set.

The odder thing is that the text of your recent two messages are invisible in the Archive, except in View Source. This may have something to do with leaving quoted material at the top of the message.

-- Shal


Marlin47
 

Thanks for the explanation, Shal.

I have seen other discussions about this sort of thing, but, it had never happened to me that I know of.

It went from bad to worse, real quick, when I replied to my own reply and it did it again.

As I see it now, what I did was a double space.

Just a double space between words, and the next character was a quotation mark.

It really had me all kinds of upset, enough so that I shut the computer down and walked away.

But, I am ok now.

Maybe.

Marlin

On 1/3/2015 11:07 PM, Shal Farley wrote:
Marlin,

I don't know what all the characters are in that text I just sent, in
green, between the word�� "in"� and the word� "a".
It was probably a non-breaking space, originally.

You have Thunderbird set to encode your outbound messages in the Windows-1252 character set. One cure for that would be to set it to UTF-8, which will work better with most web sites and email systems (but work poorly with some legacy email systems, such as my Eudora Classic).

When seen by a system expecting UTF-8 that turned into the unicode Replacement Character - a white question mark inside a black diamond - a character used to replace an invalid UTF-8 sequence. That's what shows in the View Source view of your message in the Archives.

Then, that replacement character, seen in a system expecting Windows-1252 or one of the ISO character sets, would look like three symbols from the top of the character set.

The odder thing is that the text of your recent two messages are invisible in the Archive, except in View Source. This may have something to do with leaving quoted material at the top of the message.

-- Shal


 

On Sat, Jan 3, 2015 at 9:07 PM, Shal Farley <shal@...> wrote:

The odder thing is that the text of your recent two messages are invisible in the Archive, except in View Source. This may have something to do with leaving quoted material at the top of the message.

I noticed that as well. I was able to spend some time looking at it, but I don't think I'll be able to fix that bug until tomorrow.

Lots of great discussion about group transfers, and I really appreciate it. Please keep it coming. I'll add my 2 cents later today or tomorrow morning when I have some time.

Thanks!
Mark
 


 

Marlin,

As I see it now, what I did was a double space.

Just a double space between words, and the next character was a
quotation mark.
It is fairly common for rich-text systems, such as HTML, to turn successive spaces into non-breaking spaces. Such systems typically collapse multiple spaces into a single space, but the conversion to non-breaking spaces preserves the original count of spaces.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-breaking_space

The unfortunate thing, in this case, is that non-breaking space isn't encoded in the base 7-bit ASCII set that is common to most character sets. The result is that it gets mis-interpreted when a system uses a different character set than the original.

The lesson for Groups.io is that messages posted by email have a specified character set, and that should be preserved in messages passed through. But as displayed in the archive, and as built into digests, careful handling is required. Perhaps the best approach is to convert the text to UTF-8 encoding, but that has its own issues.

My recommendation for the Archives would be to preserve the original message text unaltered, and capture the character set encoding as metadata. Then convert to UTF-8 on the fly for display. If a message gets edited update the metadata to reflect the character set used in the editing - presumably UTF-8. Of course that means the metadata must be versioned along with the text.

It really had me all kinds of upset, enough so that I shut the computer
down and walked away.
Nothing to be upset about, just computers being incompatible as standards change over time.

-- Shal


Marlin47
 

Shal, it is just a little bit more complicated than I suspected.

I have a test group on groups.io, just like you do.

After extensive testing today, I have found that if I send a new message, regardless of what I try, I cannot get it to do all the garbage.

But, if I forward that original message that first caused all the trouble, it screws up every time.

So, apparently it has something to do with whatever else is in the message.

It must be that quoted text sets something up to not be able to cope with the double spaces and quotation marks.

Anyway, I received the message from Mark saying that he noticed it. Not sure if anything needs to be done, Mark, maybe it is just the nature of the beast, as they say.

Marlin

On 1/4/2015 3:41 PM, Shal Farley wrote:
Marlin,

As I see it now, what I did was a double space.

Just a double space between words, and the next character was a
quotation mark.
It is fairly common for rich-text systems, such as HTML, to turn successive spaces into non-breaking spaces. Such systems typically collapse multiple spaces into a single space, but the conversion to non-breaking spaces preserves the original count of spaces.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-breaking_space

The unfortunate thing, in this case, is that non-breaking space isn't encoded in the base 7-bit ASCII set that is common to most character sets. The result is that it gets mis-interpreted when a system uses a different character set than the original.

The lesson for Groups.io is that messages posted by email have a specified character set, and that should be preserved in messages passed through. But as displayed in the archive, and as built into digests, careful handling is required. Perhaps the best approach is to convert the text to UTF-8 encoding, but that has its own issues.

My recommendation for the Archives would be to preserve the original message text unaltered, and capture the character set encoding as metadata. Then convert to UTF-8 on the fly for display. If a message gets edited update the metadata to reflect the character set used in the editing - presumably UTF-8. Of course that means the metadata must be versioned along with the text.

It really had me all kinds of upset, enough so that I shut the computer
down and walked away.
Nothing to be upset about, just computers being incompatible as standards change over time.

-- Shal





 

On Sun, Jan 4, 2015 at 1:41 PM, Shal Farley <shal@...> wrote:

The lesson for Groups.io is that messages posted by email have a specified character set, and that should be preserved in messages passed through. But as displayed in the archive, and as built into digests, careful handling is required. Perhaps the best approach is to convert the text to UTF-8 encoding, but that has its own issues.


We do pay attention to character set encodings, along with content-transfer-encodings, and we do preserve the encodings. All Groups.io web pages are UTF-8, so when displaying archives, we convert whatever encoding the original message is in to UTF-8. When a message is edited through the web site, we convert the UTF-8 encoded edited message back to the original encoding of the email (along with preserving the original content-transfer-encoding).

Every message does get converted to UTF-8 when we first receive it, so that we can look for and remove any Groups.io footers in replies. But we convert it right back to the original encoding before sending it out and saving it in the database.

All of that adds a "fun" layer of complexity to things, but I'm unaware of any bugs with how we handle things. We take care to ignore any badly encoded bytes, which we do unfortunately encounter; we try to decode as much as possible.

I haven't had a chance yet to look at what happened with Marlin's email. 

Thanks,
Mark