Bounce Handler Developments - Questions

From: Justin J <justin@dadamailproject.com>
Subject: Bounce Handler Developments - Questions
Date: October 19th 2011

Hey everyone,

I'm starting to do some work on the bounce handler. You can follow my work at:

https://github.com/justingit/dada-mail/tree/features-bounce_handler_enhancements

The first change I've made is to put the Scorecard in that first main screen, instead of having to press a button to see it, and also to changing the navigation to be AJAX calls, so you can quickly zoom through the scorecard, without a whole page refresh. It's nice.

I'm also working on some of the bounce rules and the algorithms that parse the bounced messages and get them working better and in some cases, up to date.

I'm thinking of making the Soft Bounce Score, Hard Bounce Score and the Score Threshold (the score that needs to be hit before a bounced message is removed from the mailing list ) something that can be customized on a per-list basis, instead of it being a global (and impossible to set, without diving into the config file, which isn't something people seem to like to do) value. Good idea?

Going one step further, I'd like to also have a new option available (again, per-list): instead of an outright deletion of the subscriber from the mailing list, perhaps instead the address is moved to a, "currently bouncing" sublist, so that the list owner can more easily look over the addresses (and the history of the bounced messages per address) and perhaps see why the messages are bouncing. From there, the list owner can make a choice of:

  • removing the address once and for all,
  • sending a, "Hey, you're bouncing! Are you really there? Confirm that you're still there and resubscribe!"
  • allowing a list owner to just simply re-subscribe an address and remove them from the "currently bouncing" sublist
  • or, well, nothing

I'd also like the individual address Profiles have an option to see if they're currently bouncing on any of the lists they're subscribed to, and if so, allow them to make a move on their own.

Good idea? There's instances where bounces happen when a mailing list is temporarily put on a email black list - not necessarily because of any action from the mailing list (ie; shared mail servers with another user causing the problems). These temporary problems can go unnoticed for a while and messages can bounce from a large part of your list. Before you know it, a percentage of your list has been unsubscribed because of bouncing. Not good! This type of bouncing should be easily undone by the list owner. Thus, all these new tools.

The other big question is one of preference:

Right now, the bounce handler email address is global, and works for all mailing lists at once. Some people have asked if it's possible to set this per-list. The argument is that there's problems with information about one list bleeding over to another list and they'd like to keep mailing lists as separate as possible. They also would like the domains of the list owner to match the domain of the bounce handler, for hosting accounts that host more than one domain at one time (and where this is easily done)

The argument against having a bounce handler email address per mailing list is, you have to set up a new bounce handler email address, per mailing list. Which, in the long run, is easier.

What's the contention from this group? Stick with what's used now (One bounce email address per (entire installation) or, change it to one bounce handler email address per list?

Any other ideas? :)



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