Joseph Reagle wrote:
In writing about Wikipedia discourse I'm stuck
with using the message-id if
I happen to have that email in a mbox, or a URL if I happen to have a Web
page, but from one I can not easily get the other, and I'm not confident
that the URL will be stable in any case. (For example, will  always
correspond to the message with the message-id "42BEC0EF.6070906(a)web.de"?)
The mailman URLs *should* remain stable, unless someone manually edits
the archive file for that month such that the sequence of messages
changes (or the archive file is somehow massively corrupted in a similar
We try to make sure that doesn't happen; if someone needs to manually
edit and rebuild the archives, they _should_ not remove whole messages,
but should blank out the virus attachment / private mail accidentally
sent / whatever without changing the sequence.
But there's no guarantee that it won't accidentally happen without
somebody noticing/mentioning it.
Without a guarantee of stability, I suppose its best
to use msg-id in citing
WP discourse, but that makes finding that message problematic for the
reader. I'd provide a hint if I could somehow obtain it myself, but the
HTML page for a message in the archive has no indicatation of the msg-id.
And even if I have the msg-id, I can't easily find the corresponding
archive URL. Before sending this message, I thought there would be a search
interface and I could write a script, but there doesn't appear to be one,
and it doesn't work in Google (e.g., ).
You might check the gmane interfaces also; most of our lists are
gatewayed to NNTP through there, and they have a web interface also.
-- brion vibber (brion @ pobox.com