Great Circle Associates List-Managers
(January 1996)

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Subject: Re: How was "-request" coined?
From: Commercial Suicide <jgreshes @ netaxs . com>
Date: Mon, 8 Jan 1996 11:13:14 -0500 (EST)
Cc: list-managers @ GreatCircle . COM
In-reply-to: <m0tZIub-000Y4YC @ miso . wwa . com>

On Mon, 8 Jan 1996, David W. Tamkin wrote:

> chosen.  Why not "-changes" or "-membership"?  If either of those had become
> the standard, and someone asked today how they came about, anyone could say
> what Miles O'Neal did: "add me, remove me -- those sound like changes to me"
> or "add me, remove me -- those sound like mail about list membership to me."
> And it still wouldn't answer the question.

But -request may be the best word to use.  On some lists the -request 
address does all kinds of things:  not just add and subtract people, but 
also serve files, receive files, give help messages, give faqs, etc.  
About the only thing that would make as much sense would be -admin 
instead of -request.

> Then again, if I had used corolla-changes instead of corolla-request, people
> would write in thinking I would take their cars in trade, replace their
> parts, or upgrade their options.
> With the advantange of hindsight from 1996, I am seriously considering
> changing the aliases for the list I still run to something grossly obvious
> like listname-submissions and listname-subscriptions.  That won't help for
> replies, since virtually nobody pays attention to whether his or her MUA
> picked out the right reply address, but it will for original mailings. 
> listname @
 site and listname-request @
 site will still have to be active (if only
> to return autoreplies that this list breaks convention) because people will
> assume they exist.

I hate to break this to you, but there are incredibly stupid people on 
the net.  I like Harlan Ellision's line:  "Give an idiot a computer and 
you get an idiot with a computer."  No matter what you change the aliases 
to, there will still be enough stupid people to annoy you.  There is no 
limit on the number of stupid people.  There the one's that can't figure 
out how to work birth control, so they actually procreate at a far higher 
rate than intelligent people.

We can spend all the time in world debating whether to use this word or 
that word, but you are never going to make your lists or aliases idiot proof.


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