[OS X TeX] "Hijacking" a thread

Justin C. Walker justin at mac.com
Wed Nov 5 02:37:37 CET 2008

On Nov 4, 2008, at 16:10 , Juergen Fenn wrote:

> Maarten Sneep schrieb:
>> It sorts into the thread you replied to in Mail.app, so it apparently
>> uses two items: the in reply to header, and the title (to help with
>> broken mail clients I guess).
>> On the other hand, I can miss threads that change the subject,  
>> because
>> they end up in a thread I decided I was no longer interested in, and
>> mark as read without further checking. If such a thread is a genuine
>> help request that I know the answer to, then someone seeking help may
>> miss out on a valid answer.
> Maarten, Apple Mail is not a standard. I will never understand that  
> even
> developers use this consumer application for it is just crap. No  
> decent
> mail client will change the subject line in a thread collapsed if some
> poster did. In fact the standard behaviour is the other way round.  
> If a
> poster changes the subject the usual behaviour in an email client is  
> to
> hide his new subject line under the old major subject. So the poster  
> who
> changes the subject usually has a disadvantage because his new subject
> line does not appear in those clients that display the thread  
> collapsed.
> Most users who do not watch the thread will not see that a new thread
> has been introduced at all.

Apple Mail is not the issue.  There are other mail handlers out there,  
and those that support threading (most, I think now) typically use two  
items to thread: the subject field and a hidden header field  
(MessageID) that all mailers that I'm aware of place in outbound  
mail.  Use of the MessageID is the primary threading mechanism, and  
that is reason that many get upset over hijacked threads.


Justin C. Walker, Curmudgeon at Large
Institute for the Absorption of Federal Funds
Like the ski resort full of girls hunting for husbands
and husbands hunting for girls, the situation is not
as symmetrical as it might seem.
   - Alan MacKay

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