Mail servers are a challenging thing, or so I’ve been told. While Tech Ops strives to use FLOSS (Free/Libre/Open Source Software) mail has been one of the major hurdles. Early on we tried to use Zimbra to manage mail but the adoption wasn’t there. As a “stop gap” we decided to occupy Google Apps. There are a few (dis)advantages with Google. Here are the facts about @nycga.net accounts, along with @occupywallstreet.net and @occupy.net, all managed through Google Apps.
Google hosts our mail. The industry term for someone else hosting your data is called putting it in the “cloud”. Under normal circumstances this provides better security for the end user. It’s better to have Google nerds looking after your mail server’s security than some over worked IT person in house. However this means that all our mail data is housed in Google’s servers. So if the NSA wants the data they will probably get it, though Google is (apparently) very transparent about it.
This movement works on Google. Most of our groups who connect online use Google Groups. Tech offers lists.occupy.net and there is also riseup as an alternative, though people seem to prefer Google. Also, if you get many e-mails from occupy members you’ll notice in the cc field of that many of the addresses, sometimes wrongly opened for public viewing, end with @gmail.com. This was one of the major contributing factors that led to us “bending” our rules.
It’s free. We have a free Google Apps account which allows us to host unlimited e-mails. However, we currently don’t have the person power to manage giving out many e-mails. We have been hosting group accounts @nycga.net and are discussing how to provide as many people as possible with @occupy.net accounts. Keep up with our forums for agenda items pertaining to the @occupy.net accounts.
Moving forward. We want to own our data. We want to use FLOSS. We want our own mail server. If you are interested in helping out please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org