[kwlug-disc] trimming posts

unsolicited unsolicited at swiz.ca
Wed Apr 23 13:48:47 EDT 2014

On 14-04-23 01:00 PM, Paul Nijjar wrote:
> On Mon, Apr 21, 2014 at 11:56:35PM -0400, Steve Izma wrote:
>> The digest format magnifies the problem, especially when people
>> include all of the digest in their replies. That's sheer
>> laziness. But it's also laziness to include parts of the message
>> you have no intention of referring to.
>>> Paul's 40k limit for the purposes of keeping posts small is specious
>>> - I can't recall the last time I saw a post get anywhere near it. It
>>> does, however, keep most attachments away, for which I am very
>>> grateful.
>> The point of his post was not the 40k but the criticism that
>> people are not trimming their posts.
> Yes. To clarify: I was not trying to re-ignite the top-posting vs
> bottom-posting flamewar.

My point was only that 40k seems far to large for a trimming limit, I 
would have thought 5k more likely. Problem is, no matter what number you 
choose, someone will have a problem with it. I can see why 40k was 
chosen, there is no right number, and you had to pick something. 40k is 
as good as anything, on that basis.

Regardless of the 40k, the 'please remember to trim your posts' is a 
very worthy reminder. Sorry if I was unclear in that.

Guilty as charged, and the reminder more than welcome and appreciated, 
on that basis.

> I made the comment because about five posts got caught in the
> moderation filter for being over 40k. The reason these posts were over
> 40k was because they were participants in rather active comment
> threads (which is awesome!) but people were not trimming their posts,
> so the emails got large.
> Sometimes when posts get caught in moderation I let them through. Once
> in a while I will even let an attachment through, but this is pretty
> arbitrary.
> I am just making a comment that I personally do not feel it is
> worthwhile to let 40k emails through just because we are not trimming
> our posts. So if your message gets rejected and you want it to get
> through, then please trim the message appropriately and resend.
> I am not the only person with moderation powers on the list (and I am
> happy to grow the set of moderators, provided they don't mind being
> deluged with "kwlug-disc-owner" spam), so if other people want to put
> in the effort of letting these messages through then I won't complain.
> At the present time it appears that I do much of the moderation,
> however.  Note that I am not on email as much as you might think, so I
> tend not to go through the moderation lists right away. That cuts off
> the flow of conversation.
> My own personal feeling is that although small and arbitrary, 40k is a
> reasonable limit for a text-heavy discussion list. We might also be
> able to eliminate this limit entirely, but I am not sure that it buys
> us a lot of signal.

I would vote that such messages be auto-rejected for size. I don't 
expect I'm going to read, and hopefully never write (yes, even I!), a 
40k text message. That's a LOT of text. (If I have ever written such a 
message, I do apologize to everyone.) [Note: I don't claim what happens 
when the text becomes rtf, or html, but then I only read/write plain 
text, reject external content and images, and often reject such messages 
in the first place.]

I would want a reject on such a message to jog me to reconsider the 
value of what I'm sending to hundreds of people. Is it all necessary? 
Useful? Put in links instead of cut and paste? Do I really expect anyone 
to chew through such? A reject would appropriately cause me to 
reconsider all of the above.

I would also vote the limit be put down to 5k or 10k. There are various 
other mechanisms available to us all to cover special cases of larger 
messages. Be it splitting posts, making use of kwlug.org blogs, dropbox, 
or the like.

OTOH, if it hasn't been broken, there's nothing to fix. Except, perhaps, 
I would vote for auto-reject with message on size.

Part of my point earlier, as Darcy confirmed / reiterated - today's 
devices and usage patterns have changed from news reader days. Good or 
bad, it has.

Given the many years I have been on this list (decade?), it feels more 
like calling over the partition top to trusted colleagues or family. 
Thus I find salutation and signatures a pointless waste of eye space. 
Sorry if others feel differently.

I'll add a reminder of my own to people, too - don't forget to change 
the subject line when appropriate. Often just appending (Was: 
somethingorother) to the subject does it for me.

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