Discussion Forums

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This is the documentation for the Mozilla Discussion Forums.


Mozilla has some 200 Discussion Forums that exist as e-mail lists as well as newsgroups as well as being synced on Google Groups. This synchronization is generally seamless, and users are free to choose their preferred method to join the discussion, over a variety of network protocols and clients. Mozilla tries to keep discussions on these public Discussion Forums, to encourage participation in the process.

How do I subscribe to a discussion forum?

You can get a list of Forums here.

If you are subscribed to at least one discussion forum as a mailing list, that will give you global posting privileges to all forums via any medium. Otherwise, you will currently need the moderator to whitelist you on a per-forum basis.

What happens to incoming messages?

All posted messages--via email, NNTP or Google Groups--come to Mozilla for moderation in an attempt to keep SPAM messages to a minimum. Then the following happens:

  • Messages are spam-filtered by Postfix.
    • Anything above spam score 7 is discarded.
    • Anything above spam score 7 is bounced.
    • Anything above spam score 2.0 gets tagged.
  • Messages are sent through a spam filter in Mailman and spam-scored (again).
    • Anything from a global whitelist member gets a -3 modifier.
    • Anything above spam score 5 is discarded.
    • Anything above spam score 2 is held for moderation (plus other rules like size).
  • Mailman content filters (if any) are applied.
  • If a message which gets this far is sent out by email, to Giganews and to Google Groups.
  • For some groups, those without moderators or those for whom the moderator has requested it, anything with a spam score between 2 and 5 is also automatically discarded (i.e. there is no moderation). Currently that list is

    How do I contact the moderator of a particular list?

    The list moderators of all lists can be reached at {listname}-owner@lists.mozilla.org where {listname} is the part before the @ in the mailing-list version name of the list. On the chance that the moderator isn't paying close attention to that address (it often gets a lot of garbage) the direct contact addresses of the moderators can be found by locating the list on https://lists.mozilla.org/listinfo/ and clicking on the list name. The contact addresses for the list will be listed at the bottom of the resulting page.

    What do I do if my messages are not getting through?

    If you send a message with a valid "From:" address and, after two hours, you do not see it posted and did not get a reply back (saying, for example, your message was held for moderation), and you have not been told you are on a blacklist, please contact the list owner (see above). Give him the exact date and time of a message you sent, the mechanism you used (mail/news/Google Groups) and the name of the discussion forum you sent it to. If the list owner can't immediately locate it (it's not sitting in the moderation queue) the list owner (or the user, if the list owner is unresponsive) should file an IT Request ticket (pick the "any other request" option) and make sure to include all of the above information.


    A very few mailing lists are also maintained on https://mail.mozilla.org/. These mailing lists are not necessarily mirrored to Google Groups or newsgroups. Some mailing lists are set up this way to allow for the possibility of moderating messages before they get sent out, which is not possible on an NNTP newsgroup.

    Forum Moderation

    As a moderator, how do I add someone to the global whitelist?

    In the moderation interface, choose "Add <email address> to one of these sender filters" and pick "Accepts".

    As a moderator, how do I add someone to the global blacklist?

    In the moderation interface, choose "Add <email address> to one of these sender filters" and pick "Discards".

    (The global blacklist is not yet implemented. When it is, the above instructions will do the trick.)

    What about other filtering mechanisms?

    Content filters and other such things you set up in the Mailman admin UI will still be applied.

    How do I fix it if I've added someone to the wrong list?

    For this, you need administrator access to the list, not just moderator access, and you need to remember which list you were moderating when you initially mis-whitelisted or mis-blacklisted them. Then, visit the appropriate list admin page, log in, click "Privacy Options" and then "Sender Filters". This page has several lists; the ones you care about are accept_these_nonmembers and discard_these_nonmembers.


    Who runs news.mozilla.org?

    Giganews is our NNTP provider and they host news.mozilla.org. You can connect to the server with normal NNTP. Currently NNTPS is not available.

    Reporting Questions/Problems

    Please file a bug in the Discussion Forums component if you have any problems with news.mozilla.org or Mozilla's Discussion Forums.

    How do I delete a message?

    To delete a message from Google Groups, the user that controls the email the message was posted from must submit a request on the Google Groups website. A link is available when viewing the message on the Groups website.

    To remove a message from GigaNews and the Mozilla archive, please file a bug in the Discussion Forums component and include the relevant message information.

    Why don't you allow binary Attachments?

    Binary attachments are dangerous because file extensions can lie, masking a malicious program as a benign binary file and causing data loss to the user.

    What is with the hierarchy (mozilla.dev.*, qa.*, reps.*, support.*)?

    Different hierarchies are meant to direct the conversation around specific topics. Dev.* is for development discussion, while Support.* is for support questions from end users. This allows us to have separate conversations for different audiences (mozilla.dev.apps.firefox vs mozilla.support.firefox).

    Why don't you propagate NNTP?

    For easier control of SPAM. Most news servers no longer honor cancel messages (message deletion requests) of any sort, so most news servers would wind up with our lower-traffic groups being useless because of the amount of spam on them (you can look at the netscape.public.mozilla.* hierarchy for examples of this - those groups are propagated). By isolating our groups to one or two servers, we can both delete the spam when it happens and more easily block the spammers from posting in the future.

    In recent times this has been somewhat hampered by Google's poor handling of spam on their end. We are still able to clean out what's visible on news.mozilla.org (Giganews) however.

    Should I mirror news.mozilla.org?

    Probably not. If you do, you will confuse the users of your mirror when they try to post questions and nobody using the official servers can see them.

    External discussion lists

    There are also some additional mailing lists that are hosted externally to Mozilla. For completeness, they are: