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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • Especially if we're talking about only a few. Emailing 100 people that their distros are immensely used and still fail quite a lot sounds reasonable, but I think it's more than fair to email 10 people.

    FAIL 100 can really help us focus efforts on bug resolution. Imagine a group in the community (composed of the community) that helps weave out bugs in CPAN/DarkPAN/whatever. Now, if they could only know which distros need the most hand... oh wait! Now they do!

    At any case, how hard can it be to email back and s

    • At any case, how hard can it be to email back....

      You don't get to decide that for other people receiving automated bulk mail.

      • True. I don't get to decide it, but I can reply to Adam's request for anyone's opinion, and per my opinion, I think that receiving one little measly email that you can just press the "Reply" button and say "no more for me" isn't the worst thing.

        I thought we're talking about some heavy-weight programmers (in a matter of skill, not body weight) that can write extremely useful modules. I would like to think that they can read an email and that they probably have some program that has a "reply" function or can

        • There is no general purpose agreement that by uploading something to PAUSE you grant permission for anyone with spare time and the desire to analyze what you uploaded has the right to send you automated e-mail as he or she sees fit.

          That fails the categorical imperative test. You may not be a Kantian (I'm not), but it's still a useful gauge for behavior.

          • There is no general purpose agreement that by uploading something to PAUSE you grant permission for anyone with spare time and the desire to analyze what you uploaded has the right to send you automated e-mail as he or she sees fit.

            Can we agree that uploading to CPAN is an act of publishing, ie. that it means that the author expects other people to take notice of the existence of the code, at a bare minimum? Can we further agree that reasonable people who upload code to CPAN will expect that other people m

            • [You] could upload your code with a disclaimer saying that no one should use it and you should not expected to conform to the common implications of the act of uploading code to the CPAN.

              There are two problems with this reasoning.

              First, I've chosen a license which already disclaims any express or implied warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. (The Artistic License in /usr/share/apps/LICENSES/ARTISTIC misspells "merchantability".)

              Second, we're discussing a so-called "common implication" that came into existence only recently. If the act of uploading to PAUSE implies that I implicitly agree to all community expectations from today until the point at which my code is no longer available from the CPAN, I need to upload new versions of every distribution I maintain to disclaim that, explicitly.

              I'm not sure that argument is compatible with this utilitarianism:

              Now, as an author I can tell you that it would be a far bigger offence to me if someone dangled the fix-it-or-lose-it hammer in front of me than would be the possibility that I may be one of the 10 out of 6,000 authors who receive one an automated mail every once in a very long while.

              That's why I invoked the Categorical Imperative.

              Maybe it's more useful for humanity as a whole if Steven Hawking litters because he has more important things on his mind than picking up his candy wrappers. Yet I'm sure some people could find better things I could do with my time than pick up candy wrappers in the park, if you check my bug queues.

              It might even be good for the Internet as a whole if you wrote a spider program to email webmasters when their links go out of date. I'm sure some of them would be glad to hear about it.

              Your motives may be on the side of the angels. Yet I'm sure when they published those sites they had no idea you were going to write such a spider -- and without that knowledge, how could they have consented to receive your automated bulk messages?

              Anyone reading this has the technical acumen to render every email address under my control completely useless with a modest amount of CPU time and a tiny Perl program. Anyone reading this has the imagination to produce a CPAN service which, when squinted at from a certain angle, absolutely requires automated bulk notifications of CPAN authors. Anyone reading this is human enough to make mistakes now and then.

              (One might idly wonder why such systems prefer email as a notification mechanism over an existing and public notification system, namely rt.cpan.org.)

              • We’re discussing a so-called “common implication” that came into existence only recently.

                That is news to me. You mean until only recently, the CPAN was regarded as a place were you upload backup copies of your code for your personal use?

                I think the idea of the CPAN from the very beginning was that it was a place where you could publish code for others if you felt like it. And I dare say it would be a sensible assumption to make that every author is perfectly well aware of and shares this

                • You mean until only recently, the CPAN was regarded as a place were you upload backup copies of your code for your personal use?

                  The context of this discussion is automated bulk emails regarding a specific external analysis of CPAN uploads which did not exist in 2000 when I uploaded my first distribution to the PAUSE. How do you generalize from the fact that in no way could I have agreed to a very specific case of receiving automated bulk email from a tool that would not exist for eight years that I objec

                  • Just don’t tell me that I agreed to them implicitly in 2000

                    You never put a “please don’t use this” sign on your code (which is not the same as an “I’m not making any promises about what the code does” sign AKA the licence). By the act of uploading itself, you implicitly declared that your intent was in fact the opposite of such a sign. If it were forbidden to attempt a reasonable non-literal interpretation of the extent of what such an intent might allow for, and i

                    • You never put a “please don’t use this” sign on your code...

                      Why do you persist in attempting to equate allowing the use of code I've uploaded under a DFSG-compatible license with implicit permission to send me unsolicited, automated email?

                      One important difference is that your use of code I have written consumes no resources on systems under my control. Unsolicted, automated email consumes resources on my mail server. This is not the only difference, but it is a stark difference.

                      By the

                    • I take that (implied subjunctive) litotes as agreement that it is robot-generated mail.

                      I was going to propose a thought experiment here, but as per below I’m not going to bother.

                      Why do you persist in attempting to equate allowing the use of code I’ve uploaded under a DFSG-compatible license with implicit permission to send me unsolicited, automated email?

                      I’m not. The situation has far more qualifying circumstances than your narrow (in my view) portrayal would suggest, and either I am una