I’m sure everyone has had the problem of sending an email to a few people, then a conversation starts, and you realise you should have included a load of other people, and you try and CC them in, but they don’t have the earlier messages, and people from the original set keep replying to the earlier messages, and the new people fall off again…
How about an ad-hoc mailing list server? This is how it would work:
- When you send out an initial message to a group, CC it to and set Reply-To to email@example.com. This could be automated by a Thunderbird add-on which created a button “Make A Group Message”.
- The templist server gets a copy of the message, and sets up a mailing list of all the participants apart from itself, with the name “random-string”.
- Anyone who replies replies to the list; the server sends the message out to the subscribers, with Reply-To set back to the list.
- If any of the participants need to add a new person, they CC them in on their next reply.
- The mailing list software notices the new person, adds them to the list, and sends them backdated copies of all the previous messages for that list. The effect is just as if they had been CCed from the beginning, but their mail was delayed.
- Once the conversation finishes, after a period of a week or two, the templist server destroys the list and deletes all the messages.