As some of you have noticed, all of the mailing lists were down for a while. The problem was eventually traced to a lack of communication between the program responsible for distributing email to the lists, and another program it was relying on to filter out spam. This has been fixed, and the lists are now working again.
During the period that email was coming in to the lists but none was being sent out, an enormous queue of messages built up. After some deliberation we decided to let the server chew through them instead of throwing away all of those messages. Since, undoubtedly, many of these messages are not legitimate, this should explain any sudden spike in spam in the next few days. We are still working hard on better spam filtering. Importantly, as the server frantically distributes the tens of thousands of messages waiting in the queue, any new messages that are sent will start at the end of the line and appear not to go through. But the lists are not down — things will go through eventually. According to my calculations, the queue should be processed by Wednesday 8/19, at which point email should flow normally.
Thanks for your patience, and we apologize for any inconvenience this has caused.