[Humanist] 28.557 Humanist's troubles -- a correction

Humanist Discussion Group willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Thu Dec 11 12:32:32 CET 2014

                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 28, No. 557.
            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
                Submit to: humanist at lists.digitalhumanities.org

        Date: Tue, 9 Dec 2014 11:45:25 -0500
        From: malgosia askanas <ma at panix.com>
        Subject: Re: a problem with Humanist
        In-Reply-To: <5486BBAA.8030109 at mccarty.org.uk>

Dear All,

I would like to amend Willard's post in a few points:

-  I most certainly hope the none of you (the list subscribers) are getting any "bounce action" notifications.   If you are, more is broken than we thought.  All the "bounce action" notifications are, hopefully and as always, going either to the listserver itself or to Willard as the apparent sender of the posts.

-  The problem is not with any of the mechanisms for generating messages to the list; it is, ostensibly, with the server's mechnism for generating SPF (Sender Policy Framework) signatures in the headers of the messages.   In the last few days, this mechanism has begun to emit - instead of just one SPF signature perHumanist  message - 495 of them, which causes the header size to exceed the limit set by the receiving servers of many of Humanist's subscribers; hence the bounces that Willard is referring to.   (Those of you who are receiving the messages can see those headers by enabling the "show all headers" or "show message source" mechanism in your email client.)  I am not sure that the fault can be ascribed to a "malevolent creature", as Willard puts it, except in some utterly figurative sense.  I would suspect a strange interaction that arose between some (as yet unidentified) recent update to the hosting server's framework and our particular list.

Malgosia Askanas
Humanist software support

At 9:06 AM +0000 12/9/14, Willard McCarty wrote:
>Dear colleagues,
>Somehow on 5 December one of the several mechanisms used in generating messages from Humanist was damaged and has resulted in "bounce actions" that at least some of you have witnessed. Several people are now at work attempting to figure out where the problem lies and will fix it once it is found. We would ask for your patience while the probing and fixing is going on. I will continue to post messages since not everyone is affected. Those who are can still access the postings from the archive. I would ask of them an especially robust patience as they are pelted with Bounce Action Notifications -- as I was shortly after midnight GMT by an excess of 250 such things. When infoglut was new I used to offer the cold comfort that one's delete key is never far away. That's about all I can offer now.
>This time I suspect my apologies should be not just for failing software but also for a malevolent creature out there somewhere who takes pleasure in harming others.
>Willard McCarty (www.mccarty.org.uk/), Professor, Department of Digital
>Humanities, King's College London, and Digital Humanities Research
>Group, University of Western Sydney

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