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bug#43073: Trim/hide full email headers on debbugs

From: Bob Proulx
Subject: bug#43073: Trim/hide full email headers on debbugs
Date: Thu, 3 Dec 2020 14:23:54 -0700

Glenn Morris wrote:
> Note that the "db view tree" is the part that gets indexed by search
> engines.

Hmm...  That does explain why when people are complaining that they
are complaining about the db tree view and not the "main" view.  (Main
in IMNHO since the regular report display is the one I use.)

> Search engines are (obviously) denied from the cgi bug pages,
> for reasons of system load. So if you get rid of the db pages, it will
> be impossible to search debbugs reports using standard web search
> engines.

Well...  That does create problems for my suggestion then.

> There are ways around this, such as searches of the associated
> bug mailing lists, and native search on, but it would
> seem like a loss to me, for very little real gain.

Agreed.  Now that I learn this.

> Note that the IP address is also in the mbox mailing list archives:

Yes.  But I have yet to see anyone actually complain about those.
(It's possible I have missed seeing a complaint.  But I don't recall
having seen one on the mbox archives.)

> and now also in the help-debbugs mailing list archives (Streisand effect
> ahoy).

Right!  The Streisand effect.  The very act of trying to suppress
something calls attention to it.

Even better John Oliver did a (tremendously humorous but very
irreverent, NSFW due to language) report on this topic too.

Usually it is better to let sleeping dogs lie.  Otherwise attempts to
suppress information will only serve to call attention to it.

My best advice to people is to do nothing.

> The right solution is probably to make the db pages not include full
> header information, but of course that is more work. I think it is
> /usr/lib/debbugs/db2html that would need patching (already patched to
> hide email addresses).

Okay then!  I'll look at it.  Won't be today.  I'll put it on the task
queue.  Good that I see it is in Perl as that is a good language for
me.  I don't see where address hidden is done there but I am sure it
will become clear when digging into it.


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