[pmwiki-users] Fox mail features: feedback invited

Sameer Kumar skumar at eharch.com
Mon May 19 16:30:53 CDT 2008

Now I added a foxaction 'mail' and markup (:foxmail ..:) which

similar to fox markup (:foxreplace ...:) (:foxadd ...:) (:foxptv ...:)

can take a template and target parameter. The template in this case

is used to format the email, and the target is used to specify a

notify list page.


This is a welcome change! Being able to specify the template will surely
make the recipe much more flexible. Thank you!


This new markup makes it possible to use Fox for mailing an email to

a specified group of recipients, and it is not necessary that Fox has

to do a successful posting for this email to be sent. Thereby one can

built Mail Forms (Contact Forms) or use it to issue newsletters to

a group of subscribers (as long as there are not too many, since the

mailing is done by the php mail function).


Today I widened the possibilities by making it possible to issue HTML

formatted emails. The email template accepts wiki markup, the

body of the email will be marked up to HTML, and the email header

will get appropriate code to mark the email message as HTML formatted.

A variable has to be set in config.php to enable this behavior.


I am eager to try out the HTML format.


I also integrated FoxNotify and Fox code further, so that it is no

longer necessary to set a foxfilter FoxNotify. It is sufficient to

set a notify list page with a foxnotify input control.


These changes of today have not yet been released.


I am wondering if it is a good idea to keep a FoxNotifyLists group,

and if the  (:foxmail ..:) markup should be restricted to use only

email target lists from that group, or if target lists could be

anywhere (like other target pages). 'mail' has to be enabled as

foxaction for such pages (like 'add' or 'replace' for other target

pages, as specified with $FoxPagePermissions.


In the way that I am using Pmwiki, having a dedicated group with target
lists is not a problem. However, managing these various lists is a more
significant problem.

I would like to vote for a more enhanced version of the already existing
"AddEmail" function within Fox which allows users to add/remove
themselves from multiple lists. So, while the administrator decides how
many lists there would be, each user can 'subscribe' to any number of
these lists, and thereby control what they receive. 


My original idea about the FoxNotifyLists group was that it is easier

to protect pages with email addresses if they are in one specific

group. Also FoxNotify worked without any extra FoxPagePermission


Have you got any comments on such security questions?


In my opinion, the security issues related with controlling the editing
these lists should be tackled by not allowing the users to see the lists
themselves. Instead, they should be presented a form (like AddEmail
currently) where they can modify only their own email settings. They
would never know who else has opted for what mailings. 


And are there specific security concerns to be addressed by allowing

HTML formatted email messages? Note the formatting is done via wiki

markup in the template page, not by inserting HTML tags into the

template. At the same time it will be possible to use wiki markup for

instance in a text box of a Mail Form, if HTML emails are enabled.

Quite good looking formatted newsletters, including images and links

etc., can be mailed this way as well.


Please give me you ideas on these issues, so I can finalise the next

release of fox and FoxNotify.


I have one more feature request:

I use FoxNotify along with FoxForum where the users can choose to send
an email to an existing list announcing the post. However, if the post
is in response to an existing topic, I would like the user to send the
email to only those people who are participating in the discussion. Can
the FoxNotify be made to harvest emails from the previous posters and
send emails to a 'dynamic' list? I will understand if you tell me that
this is too ambitious!


I would like to end by saying that we are extremely grateful for your
immense contribution and generous help! Fox is a fantastic phenomenon.
Thank you very much!



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