e-mail headers in addition to From:

RalphSRalphS Posts: 3
edited 2004-08-16 - 14:52:21 in General Discussion
Thank you very much for the rapid work to add e-mail subscriptions. This permits those of us who do not have loads of on-line browsing time to keep up with the conversations in our email. (In my case, I read most of the forum while riding the commuter train to and from work.)

In a separate topic you polled participants for what to put in the From: header of outgoing email. I want to suggest several additional headers that are relevant and ask that you consider using them:

Sender: forumadmin@forums.parallax.com
To: Parallax BasicStamps Forum

These two permit more comprehensive e-mail filtering (i.e. classification) options, especially the ability to file messages from different fora in different ways. I recommend a generic 'forumadmin' address for Sender; this would be an address you use for all messages from all Parallax fora, in contrast to a separate address that is associated with an individual forum (below). In RFC822 parlance , the Sender header identifies "the actual submittor".

Resent-From: BasicStamps@forums.parallax.com

This header identifies a forum-specific address. It is supposed to be an authentic address, but it need not be one that actually does anything (i.e. you could direct messages received there into the bit bucket if you wished). In combination with the Reply-To header, this would permit some (hypothetical) future email-to-forum-post interface:

Reply-To: BasicStamps@forums.parallax.com

It would be unfriendly to redirect incoming mail to a Reply-To address to the bit bucket, so I suggest you not add ReplyTo until a reverse email-to-post interface is developed.

An especially useful thing to add to your outgoing mail would be the URL of the message in the forum. This would permit one-click addess from e-mail back to the topic-specific page in the Web for easy reply and for reference if the mail is forwarded to others. We added this recently to our Web mail archive and it has been extremely useful. We use the
syntax for experimental headers: e.g.

X-archived-at: http://forums.parallax.com/forums/default.aspx?f=5&m=1


Thanks for considering these. And thanks again for responding so quickly to our pleas for email service in the migration from the old forum system to this one.


  • RalphSRalphS Posts: 3
    edited 2004-08-13 - 13:14:32
    oops, I just learned something about the text syntax used by this forum system; square brackets delimit URLs, so I'd better not use them in my text. I had included the following references:

    In a separate topic (1) ...

    In RFC822 parlance (2) ...

    (1) [noparse][[/noparse]http://forums.parallax.com/forums/default.aspx?f=13&m=1609]
    (2) http://www.ietf.org/rfc/rfc822.txt
  • Jim EwaldJim Ewald Posts: 700
    edited 2004-08-16 - 14:52:21

    I want to thank you for your recommendations. I have been trying to get re-aquainted with RFC822 with your thoughts in mind. It will take a few more days - and a lot more coffee - to map the message headers appropriately. I am particularly interested in embedding useful information in the X-headers, since this seems to be the way things are done these days. It's just taking some time to wrap my head around all of your suggestions.


    Parallax IT Dept.
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