[MUD-Dev] META: Making the list public?

Michael Hohensee michael at sparta.mainstream.net
Fri Jul 18 12:21:32 New Zealand Standard Time 1997

Brandon Gillespie wrote:
> On Thu, 17 Jul 1997 clawrenc at cup.hp.com wrote:
> > Brandon Gillespie's solution to this for the Cold* lists is to remove
> > all the email addresses from the posted archives.  I don't like that
> > solution -- for one it kills amost all attributions, and for another
> > it renders almost all posts anonymous, removing much of any sense of
> > context.
> Not really.  What it does is change the address from/to:
>       joe at host.site.com
>       ???@host.site.com
> AND, since 99% of the people actually put their full name in with their
> email address, as:
>       Joe Friday <joe at host.site.com>
> It really doesn't make anything anonymous, as the archive system will use
> 'Joe Friday' anywhere the name should be, and will ONLY use
> ???@host.site.com when it can't figure out anything else (in the headers).
> In the mail body it just does ???@blah.

Have everyone come up with an alias.  For instance, I often use
"Archon", or "Zarchon."  Whenever a string like "Michael Hohensee" (case
insensitive) shows up, the posting program can replace it with "Archon."

It'd be fairly simple to do.  If the capability doesn't already exist in
the posting program, I could just slam together some code I've got from
MUD writing to do it. (yes, I've written sophisticated find-and-replace
functions for my MUD.  Had something to do with file editors, I think.

> Then there are the message signatures, which sorta remove anonymity :)

If they are delinated by "--", they can be chopped or edited in any way
you like.

> Just for note: everybody I've talked to loves how the archives handle
> names, and I've yet to hear a complaint.  Even in the few cases where
> people's mail name doesn't include their real name, its still signed and
> easy to figure out (go to it and skim them, see how much anonymity
> exists.. http://www.cold.org/info/lists).
> I can say that if the lists are available on the web without some sort of
> email masking system I will no longer be posting to the list (too many
> email-addr searching engines out there).
> -Brandon Gillespie

Another possibility for avoiding email-engines is to insert junk into
each address.  For example, I've seen "joeblow at host.site.com" turned
into "joeblow.NOREPLY at NOREPLY.host.NOREPLY.site.com".  Presumably, email
engines are currently too stupid to decode this.  If they start getting
clever, we could always do more interesting things, like
"host at joeblow.site.com".  That ought to fool most programs.

Michael Hohensee	michael at sparta.mainstream.net
"If all the world's a stage, I want to operate the trap door."
                -- Paul Beatty

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