[Noisebridge-discuss] list archives, redaction, search engines, and privacy

Andy Isaacson adi at hexapodia.org
Wed Apr 22 05:48:46 UTC 2009

At the request of one of our members (who wants to keep their first+last
name from being associated with Noisebridge, but the full name was
posted to the board list) I've added a robots.txt to www.noisebridge.net
that should block /pipermail/board/ from being indexed by google and
other reasonable web indexers.

The block is specific to the board archive, and should not affect the
-discuss list.

Depending on how that works out, we may end up deciding to redact the
archives more explicitly.

I'd personally prefer not to edit the archives, but I fully understand
and support individuals having control over their deets and achieving
their own preferred degree of information disclosure.  So, there are
a few options under consideration:

0. do nothing
1. use robots.txt to request non-indexing of /pipermail/board/
1.5. use robots.txt to request non-indexing of the specific messages
2. edit the archive ("s/John Doe/John #########/g")
3. remove the offending messages from the archive (replacing it with
"removed at the request of a member")
4. remove the offending messages without leaving a notice
5. make the archives require a login (possibly a trivial login just to
defeat indexing).

currently we're at 1.0; IMO 1.5 and 3. are the relevant alternatives.
(Somehow, to me, 3. seems less Newspeak than 2., but perhaps that's just

Additionally, I'd like to exhort people who wish to manage their
disclosure at Noisebridge to *communicate* their requests.  In

 - if you want to use a pseudonym, use it consistently (and clarify as
   reasonable when the topic comes up, if necessary).
 - if you want to limit disclosure of information that most other people
   seem comfortable disclosing, please keep the Treasurer and Secretary
   informed of your desires.  In the case at hand the disclosure
   happened because the individual paid with a Paypal transfer, and the
   Treasurer ended up enquiring about the payment.
 - don't disclose information yourself that you don't want shared,
   especially if norms are for disclosure.  (Don't CC an address you
   don't want publicized on a mailing list post, etc.)


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