Removing yourself from a mailing list

I wanted to remove myself from a mailing list today, but there was no unsubscribe link in the email footer. The list was legitimate, and I don’t suspect that the operators were intentionally trying to lock me in, but it didn’t help my situation. The content just is not as relevant to me as it used to me.

I had this nagging sensation that I’d already attempted to remove myself from the list before, and that it might have been a problem with me using my work email vs. my personal email, even though they end up in the same inbox. As such, I used the View > Message > Long Headers function of Apple’s Mail application to see what address the email was actually being sent to. Doing so revealed a bunch of other headers that Mailman had added to the email that I found really useful.

Of note is the the List-Unsubscribe header, which shows both a URL and an email address (and subject) that can be used to unsubscribe from the list. Hitting the URL didn’t work for me (it might not be configured to listen on that port anymore) but sending an email with the right subject to the right address worked a treat, and instigated the three-way handshake that’s commonly used to confirm I am who I say I am, and I want to leave the list.