How to use the SIPB Comment Script
The comment gateway allows a home page creator to insert a comment-reply
form on a home page, without having to write complex CGI scripts. A user
can then fill out a comment to be sent off to you. SIPB lets anyone use
the comment gateway as long as you register your address for receiving mail.
What to do
1. Write your home page
- You should first have an already established home page. Comment
forms are much more useful on pages that have something to leave
a comment about. It's not considered overly useful to place a
comment form on a page that just says 'under construction'.
2. Place the HTML forms code on your page
- Place this code in your page, where your email address has been
substituted for address:
<form method="post" action="http://stuff.mit.edu/comment">
<input type=hidden name="to" value="address">
Your Email Address: <input name="email" size=30><br>
Your URL: <input name="url" size=40><br>
<textarea name="body" rows=4 cols=60></textarea>
<input type=submit value="Send Message">
<input type=reset value="Clear Message">
3. Register your receiving email address(es)
- In order to receive mail through our comment gateway, we
need your email address and the URL where the comment
script is *used* (e.g., if it's not used in your main page, but
on some other page, we want the other page's URL). We need the listing
of your address exactly as it is listed in the "to" field. If you
have multiple addresses in one single "to" field, we need to know
exactly how the addresses are listed (in order). Mail this
information to email@example.com.
4. Modifcations and Examples
You can modify all the visual aspects of the form.
For instance, by using a the selection method rather than
the default input type for the "to" field, you can let the user
choose from a list of email addresses to send the form.
Here are a couple of good examples of using the comment
script: SIPB's comment page and
MIT users can also use
web.mit.edu's comment gateway.
Common Questions and Answers about the Comment Script
- Q: Can I add other random fields besides the "to" and "url" fields?
- A: No. We have not put this functionality into the script.
- Q: Why was this script invented?
- A: Not all browsers supported "mailto" back in the old days. This
script let users incorporate an alternative to mailto's in a page.
- Q: Why do you require receiver email address registration?
- A: Because of several abuses of our gateway, many institutions
spent expensive staff time dealing with email harrassment.
We're sorry that we can't provide unrestricted use, but the
abusers have forced us to either shut down the script
completely or use the registration process.
- Q: Is the anonymous mail really anonymous?
- A: No. If you want to send truly anonymous email, don't
use this service. Try an anonymous remailer. Things on the
Internet can be easily traced.
- Q: Do I have to pay to use the script?
- A: No.