I am first replying to Antony, than to Bernhard.
> You just don't get it, do you? Just about all the mailing lists
> newsgroups on the Internet are archived, and such archives are often
> publicly accessible through the Internet. That is the way it works!
> That is what a mailing list or newsgroup is supposed to work!
> Have you seen anyone complain about it? No! Why? Because whenever
> you post to a public mailing list, you have already implicitly
> agreed that your message will be archived for public viewing.
Let all try to be patient and work out the problem.
There is a difference between a mailing-list and a news-group;
a world difference, quite literally.
When posting to a news-group, you make a copy of a "file" into your
local news-server, which then mirrors the "file" into all
news-servers world wide; the reader of your "file" may then be any
person, at any time, when reading from his/her local news-server.
When posting to a mailing-list, you send your "mail" to a restricted
number of persons, namely all and only those persons who are
subscribed at that very moment, possibly including additional
receivers (still being physical persons) whose address has been
explicitly included; the reader of your "mail" may then be any person
who has received your "mail" in his/her mailbox. You do not receive
all the past mail when you subscribe, nor you receive all the future
mail if you unsubscribe.
By publishing your "mail" on the Internet, Debian is allowing the
world at large to read your "mail" at any time, there including
persons who were not subscribed to the mailing-list at the time when
you sent your "mail".
When you subscribe to a mailing-list, you are just doing this. You
are *not* signing an agreement for which every "mail" you send to
that list is also published, for the world at large to read at any
time; you are *just* signing an agreement for which you are entitled
to (1) receive the mail posted by others on that list, and to (2)
post your mail to that list, until you unsubscribe. Period. If you
want your mail published, you only have four possibilities: (1) you
put your mail in your Internet page, (2) you post your mail as a file
to a news-group, (3) you post your mail to a news-paper or other
officially registered periodical, (4) you write a collection and
publish it as a book.
It is a plain matter of knowing what is what here. If you post to a
mailing-list, you are *not* publishing. If you post to a news-group
you are indeed publishing, although the publication is not
authoritative (i.e. citing is not reliable, as the source of the
cited document may disappear/be erased for good, and there is no
certainty that the author is *really* the author). If Debian is
archiving and indexing your mail on the Internet, then Debian is
publishing your mail; the publication is also authoritative, as the
source of the cited document is there to stay with a precise index,
and there is also certainty on the author, as he/she is indeed
registered (assuming that you can only post if you are registered,
i.e. subscribed, which is not always the case). The only possibility
for Debian to publish the content of a mailing-list is to explicitly
agree with the authors (at subscription time) that their posted mail
will be under a certain copyright, or copyleft agreement, so that the
mail can legally appear on the Internet. On the other hand, there are
persons who do not want their mail to be public, but still want to
exchange information as usual, so that Debian wants two means of
communication, namely a mailing-list and a published-mailing-list.
At the time of writing, Debian is publishing the content of all its
mailing-lists *without* the authors' explicit consent. This consent
in fact, *can not* be implicit as some of you has claimed.
I understand that there is a certain bad practice on the Internet,
but you please understand at this point that this bad practice does
not modify the law, and that if Debian (and other similar
organisations) keeps acting against the law (in the given case),
sooner or later these actions will be legally hold against the
organisation. The fact itself that the problem is being discussed,
should be sufficient for Debian to take immediate countermeasures,
which incidentally are also quite easily implementable.
Preventing is in fact easier and better than curing.
I would like to reply to Bernhard now.
> I think this is a to limited view of things.
> First technically, the mails go to debian to redistribute them,
> and then there is an difference between mails to an public discussion
> forum and an limited number of people, you sent mail to.
> Or do you value to speeches the same in matter of privaty, where the one
> in helt in an backroom of an tavern and the second for example in
> parliament or an other public forum, that is widly open to be heared by
> anyone intrested and is known to be archieved?
I have already replied in detail to the technical issue.
On speeches, the very points are whether the speaker/writer knows to
be archived/published, as this is in fact my original argument, and
whether there is a publisher in the first place (eg. TV or press).
I did not know I was being archived/published by Debian, nor Debian
has the general right for doing it, as Debian is not even a publisher!
If you remember my anger on this point, then you remember the
following words of mine:
> It is like talking to friends for years, and suddenly discover that
> they have been recording you! Not only this, but they have been also
> duplicating and indexing via commercial institutes! Where is the
> privacy? What sort of community is this one?
The fact that I kept posting last weekend is because I was indeed
rising the problem. I started this thread knowing that I was going to
be archived; as I started this thread shortly after noting that a
certain site was indexing just about 450 mail of mine, and I was and
still I am royally upset. An explicit agreement that legally entitles
Debian to publish my mail has never been signed, and if there were
one, it would not be legally valid, as Debian is not a publisher in
the first place. If Debian is a publisher, could you please point me
at the legal document that can prove it? If there is a legal
agreement between me and Debian that legally entitles Debian to
publish my mail, could please Debian point me at that document, as I do
not have it in the first place? Please note that I have been posting
to three Debian mailing-lists during this weekend, and that I have
never subscribed to them; as such, it is indeed possible to post into
these lists without even seeing any request of agreement from Debian.
(You may then say that it is because Debian's mailing-lists are public,
which unfortunately is not the case, as (1) I remember having mail
bounched when posting to a Debian list where I was not subscribed,
so that these lists are certainly not public in that sense, and
(2) the term "public" only has a proper meaning when talking about
"publication", which practice is ruled by the copyright code, which
code Debian is not observing, as Debian is not even a publisher in
the first place, and if it were a publisher, no document exists that
entitles Debian to publish my mail. You may then say that it is
because Debian's mailing-lists are public, and there we go again,
and again, and again, in this infinite verbal loop.)