[p2p-research] How to only reply to mailing lists, was: Again on mailing lists

M. Fioretti mfioretti at nexaima.net
Sat Nov 28 19:55:03 CET 2009

On Sat, Nov 28, 2009 12:30:11 PM -0600, Kevin Carson wrote:

> The problem is this is set up as a "reply all" email list.  If you
> just hit "reply," it only goes to the individual poster.  And if you
> hit "reply all," it goes to both the list and the individual poster.
> I always delete all the email addresses besides the list itself, but
> it's a hassle.  And as far as I know there's no way to fix it.

All email sent by mailing list servers has hidden headers that mean
"this is a message from the list whose address is XXX" where XXX is
the email address of the list itself.

The problem you mention simply disappears if you use an email client
which recognizes those headers. In any such client you have a button
or keyboard shortcut which means "never mind how the list is set up,
send my reply ONLY to the list".

I, for example, use Mutt. In Mutt, whenever I type "L" my reply goes
only to the list. If I type "r", instead, Mutt replies to whatever
address the list software wrote as the reply-address.  **Personally**
this is one of the reasons I use Mutt: it's just one of the ways in
which it makes me save much more time than any other client I've

As far as I know, and I believe your sentence above confirms this,
such a function is not possible to have in Gmail's web interface.
Thunderbird, however, can do the same thing as Mutt if you install an
extension.  Other clients... probably, I don't know.

So the way to avoid this specific hassle exists and is very "simple":
switch to Thunderbird (as it works on Linux, Mac, Windows...) and
install that extension. Of course, chosing a mail client is like
chosing a religion, not simple at all. I'm just saying "what you must
check if you want to avoid this hassle is if your email client has or
can install a reply-to-list function".


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