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Re: semi-moderating debian lists

On Sat, 26 Oct 2002, Duncan Findlay wrote:
> On Sat, Oct 26, 2002 at 09:20:25PM +0200, Santiago Vila wrote:
> > These are some statistics about the approximate amount of spam mail
> > received from all the Debian lists I'm subscribed to during this month
> > until today:
> Santiago, I'd be more interested in statistics generated with a later
> version of spamassassin.

I will probably made them after a later version of spamassassin is
installed in lists.debian.org.

> If lists.debian.org were to upgrade to SA 2.4x, I'd bet on a serious
> reduction in spam. Going to moderation style lists is simply
> unnecessary.

No, this is not moderation-style, this is *semi*-moderation. Only a
very small fraction of all messages will be moderated: Those who have
a score higher than "Y".

My proposal does not depend on what spamassassin version we are using.

If we have a better SA, we can, at our choice, make moderator's work
easier, or reduce the spam level even more by reducing the level at
which messages are moderated.

A different SA version will not change the fact that the probability
of a message being spam increases as its SA score increases. What
I propose is to moderate messages which have more than, say, 80% of
probability of being spam. Currently this happens at a score of 2.0

> By filtering lists through spamassassin 2.43 (even with the
> compensation for X-Mailing-List, etc making an effective threshold ) I
> get only a few spams from the lists (no stats, sorry)

Ok, less work for the moderators, then. If we get so few spam we could
start moderating messages between 1.0 and 2.0 as well. That would save
me from receiving one additional hundred spam messages a month, for
the lists I'm subscribed to.

> Plus, I feel that moderation takes away from the overall "openness" of
> the Debian project. Sure, only slightly spammy messages are moderated,
> but still, it reduces the community feel.

Spam also reduces the "community feel". When I see a spam on a debian
lists I think: Who invited this guy to write here?

Debian should not be open to spammers and a small delay in spammy
messages will not reduce the "community feel", it will increase it
since we will have less spam.

> I think developers shouldn't waste their time moderating lists, they
> should do more useful work, like fixing RC bugs, working on
> debian-installer, etc.

No, this is not how things work in debian. If you think moderating is
a useless work, just don't volunteer yourself. Nobody will force
anybody to be a moderator. But if someone volunteer to moderate, and
we would benefit from this work, we should allow him/her to moderate.

If you think semi-moderating a mailing list is a lot of work, I think
you have not read carefully my statistics.

If I had been a moderator for the lists I am subscribed, I would have
received 366 messages to be moderated in this month (those having a
score of 2.0 or higher). From those, 295 were spam, so I would have to
care only about resubmitting the remaining 71, that's two mails per day.
Completely affordable.

> > Naive question: Would anyone object if I ask the listmasters to
> > implement this procedure? [ Remember, "If you want something done,
> > do it yourself" does not work at all for things where you need root ].
> Yes. I'd object strongly. There are other ways of fixing the problem,
> and your proposal is simply too time-consuming.

It's not too time-consuming. If you think it is, just don't volunteer to
moderate, but you are not the one to tell what others do with their time.

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