[-empyre-] another explanation in re lost posts

Brett Stalbaum stalbaum at ucsd.edu
Thu Jan 17 10:51:37 EST 2008

I'm not sure that it means our fears are unwarranted, but it would  
displace our suspicion of the underlying reasons for the problem from  
the intentional patrolling of national and/or ideological boundaries  
to the unintentional patrolling of nuisance email and worrisome  
executable code. The effect is the same, every once in a while I find  
an important message in my spam filters too. It raises issues of how  
we are becoming conditioned to filters - and what analogous processes  
(of the naturalization of exclusion) might be going on between  
geographic and electronic borders...

On Jan 15, 2008, at 7:49 PM, Christina McPhee wrote:

> Hi -empyre-
> The COFA systems adminstrator, Damien O'Brien,  has introduced  
> himself with the note, below. He has also made himself a moderator  
> of our list.   He's suggesting that the 'suspicious header' problem  
> might be caused by  hidden coding in gmail accounts.  So that's a  
> new explanation, and if it proves correct, then our fears are  
> unwarranted.
> Thanks for your patience in this matter.
> -cm
> Begin forwarded message:
>> From: Damian O'Brien <damian at cofa.unsw.edu.au>
>> Date: January 15, 2008 5:06:56 PM PST
>> To: christina at christinamcphee.net
>> Cc: lukedsico at yahoo.com.au, melinda at anat.org.au,  
>> bastoslistas at gmail.com, sbasbaum at gmail.com, empyre at cornell.edu,  
>> naeem.mohaiemen at gmail.com, editor at intertheory.org
>> Subject: Re: Mailman post from christina at christinamcphee.net  
>> requires approval
>> Hello Christina
>> I find it more than a little surprising and a tad offensive that  
>> your first reaction is to assume that a university would be  
>> actively censoring posts due to the reasons you expressed.  It is  
>> nonsensical in the extreme both from a technical and operational  
>> perspective, and to be frank ridiculous.
>> To the matter at hand.  The address naeem.mohaiemen at gmail.com is  
>> subscribed to the empyre list, and it is set to avoid moderation.
>> Your mail suggests that you have received requests for moderation  
>> regarding posts from the address in question.  When you receive a  
>> moderation request, included in the request is a reason that the  
>> post is being moderated.  Here is an example:
>> >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
>> As list administrator, your authorization is requested for the
>> following mailing list posting:
>>     List:    Mailman at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au
>>     From:    christina at christinamcphee.net
>>     Subject: COFA list administration problem re-empyre-
>>     Reason:  Post by non-member to a members-only list
>> >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
>> Even when an address is set to avoid moderation, it will still be  
>> held for moderation if it triggers any one of a number of server- 
>> wide conditions.  Examples of conditions are:
>> * If a post is larger than the maximum size (Empyre currently has  
>> a maximum message size of 30kb, any of the numerous empyre list  
>> administrators can change this at the administration page for the  
>> list).
>> * If the list address is included in the BCC: field of the mail.
>> * If there are more than 4 addresses in the To: or CC: field of  
>> the mail. (also can be modified in the Administration area).
>> A message passing through the COFA mail server will be quarantined  
>> if it fails tests for spam or viruses.  We have this occur more  
>> often for gmail and yahoo addresses (which often contain embedded  
>> advertisements) than other addresses. However I have checked the  
>> quarantined messages on the server, and no messages from the  
>> address naeem.mohaiemen at gmail.com were found.
>> In order to resolve this issue I have added myself as a moderator  
>> and administrator for the list.
>> Christina, can you please forward to me the posts from the list  
>> system requesting moderation for posts from  
>> naeem.mohaiemen at gmail.com.  They will contain the reason that the  
>> post was held for moderation in the first place.
>> Naeem, can you please post a new message to the empyre list  
>> (simply containing the words test in the body will do).  No other  
>> moderators for the empyre list are to process the moderation  
>> request.  I have included all moderators in this post so that they  
>> are informed and know not to touch any further posts from Naeem.   
>> I will moderate it myself and try to follow it on the mail server  
>> to identify the path it takes.
>> If anyone has any further information which may be useful  
>> regarding identifying the problem at hand, please contact me  
>> directly.
>> Christina I would suggest that you take more time to consider the  
>> logic behind your assertions, especially when they are as  
>> potentially defamatory as those made both in this post and those  
>> made to the empyre list.  If people such as yourself are jumping  
>> at shadows and accusing the university which hosts your list of  
>> racial profiling I fear that the powers which generate such  
>> hysteria have already won.  I ask that you post to the empyre list  
>> to retract in full your allegations.
>> Regards
>> Damian
>> _____________________
>> Damian O'Brien
>> Systems Administrator
>> College of Fine Arts UNSW
>> Ph: 02 93850672
>> Fx: 02 93850706
>> damian at cofa.unsw.edu.au
>> _____________________
>> On 16/01/2008, at 4:08 AM, mailman-owner at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au  
>> wrote:
>>> From: Christina McPhee <christina at christinamcphee.net>
>>> Date: 16 January 2008 4:04:52 AM
>>> To: lukedsico at yahoo.com.au, mailman at gamera.cofa.unsw.edu.au
>>> Cc: melinda at anat.org.au, bastoslistas at gmail.com,  
>>> sbasbaum at gmail.com, Renate Ferro and Tim Murray  
>>> <empyre at cornell.edu>, Naeem Mohaiemen <naeem.mohaiemen at gmail.com>
>>> Subject: COFA list administration problem re-empyre-
>>> hi Luke,
>>> you are on our -empyre- website when I click for Nigel Kirsten,  
>>> so I guess you must have his job now at COFA?
>>> regarding the -empyre- list,  your  Mailman filter settings are  
>>> censoring posts by our guest Naeem Mohaiemen! -- who is a member  
>>> of the listserv.  But why?  I have approved all his posts. Also  
>>> his posts are supposed to go through without moderation.  Instead  
>>> the posts disappear.  The only way I can get his posts to appear  
>>> on the list is to forward them myself.
>>> Is the mailman software filtering his email because he has a  
>>> Middle Eastern name?  I think his name is being blocked because  
>>> when i repost his content under my  name it goes through.  So the  
>>> filters must be changed to allow Arabic, Muslim, Middle Eastern  
>>> nomenclature.  We don't mind lowering the filter standards on the  
>>> -empyre- list in order to be sure that speech remains accessible  
>>> to everyone on our list. I am assuming this is the problem.  IT's  
>>> incredibly embarrassing, and there doesnt seem to be any way I as  
>>> a list moderator can fix this.   Please help us out.  This is an  
>>> international list and such a thing should not be happening.
>>> Thanks, and I hope you can respond really soon,
>>> Christina McPhee
>>> -empyre-
> www.christinamcphee.net
> www.strikeslip.tv
> www.naxsmash.net
> PO Box 7063 Los Osos, CA USA 93412
>  001 805 459 4939
> christina at christinamcphee.net
> skype:  naxsmash
> _______________________________________________
> empyre forum
> empyre at lists.cofa.unsw.edu.au
> http://www.subtle.net/empyre

Brett Stalbaum, Lecturer lsoe
University of California San Diego
Department of Visual Arts

Winter 2008 office hours
ICAM40/VIS40 Wed. 1-2PM, Man 221
ICAM/Media(computing) faculty advising Wed 2-3PM Man 221
VIS141A - Thurs. 4-6PM, UC201-230
(ICAM 120 students welcome)

More information about the empyre mailing list