Mailing List Guidelines


Guidelines for Email Newsletter/Mail list subscribers
  • Save your 'Welcome' messages with list rules and unsubscription information.

  • Don't send an 'unsubscribe' message to the whole list. You most probably will receive some very unwelcome suggestions about getting off the list. (Look at your 'Welcome' message for unsubscribe instructions)

  • Do NOT assume that hitting "reply" with "remove" in the subject field (for example) will get you off the list. (Look at your 'Welcome' message for unsubscribe instructions)

  • Don't expect the list administrator to remove you manually. YOU subscribed; you can remove yourself. (There ARE exceptions and the list administrator may work with you but, if the process is totally automated - you are out of luck!)

  • Do not subscribe to lists using an email address with an 'auto responder' function. This includes "Out of Office Auto reply" and other features like automatic signature with links to Yahoo mail or MSN Mail. Doing this creates a large amount of wasted email, which can be a significant burden on a publisher with a large email list. (It can also cause YOUR in box to exceed its limits and your list messages will 'bounce' back to the list administrator... A sure way to be automatically unsubscribed...)

  • If you have a problem, take it up nicely with the list administrator (List Mom).

  • Do not mail a single individual when replying - reply to the list. The question posted may be something other people are interested in. These other people have no way to read your reply and will probably contact the original requestor for information. The one person consequently gets overloaded with mail while the rest of the list misses out. (Now if there's a 'connection' and you want to further that connection, then emailing each other only makes sense! The rest of the list has no interest...) If in doubt, contact the list administrator.

  • Most, if not all, mailing lists require that you are subscribed to allow a mail to go through to ALL the subscribers. If you post without being subscribed (or from a different email address than the one you are subscribed as) your mail will be held until the list administrator either approves or discards it.
    The reason for this policy is, of course, the dreaded internet disease called spam.

  • Please do not reply to an existing message as a short-cut to post a NEW message to the lists. Many mail programs and web archivers use information within emails to keep them together as "threads", a collections of posts that discuss a certain subject. If you don't intend to reply on the same or similar subject, don't just hit reply on an existing mail and change subject, create a new mail.

  • HTML is not for emails. Please switch off those HTML encoded messages. You can mail all those funny emails to your friends. We speak plain text emails here.

  • If you are the one who asks, please consider responding once more in case one of the hints was what solved your problems. The guys who write answers feel good to know that they provided a good answer and that you fixed the problem. Far too often, the person who asks the question is never heard of again, and we never get to know if he/she is gone because the question was answered or perhaps because the problem was unsolvable!

  • Getting the solution posted also helps other users that experience the same problem(s) or have the very same question. They get to see (possibly in the web archives) that the suggested answer actually has helped at least one person.

  • People on the Internet often get far more email than they can deal with. As a common courtesy to do your part to minimize this email, you should always check the Frequently Asked Questions files (if available), search the Internet, and search the newsgroups for the answer to a question before sending email to a human being. If it turns out that the question was easily obtainable in an obvious place, you may annoy the other person, irritate the other list members and embarrass yourself.

  • As with use of the FAQ, CHECK THE ARCHIVES for the mail list you are posting the query to. You never know, someone might have already posted the question and, because messages are threaded, you will be able to see if someone has also posted a response. (Look at your 'Welcome' message for mail list archive addresses.)

  • Flaming is the act of sending someone an outrageously insulting message, whether by private email or in a public Usenet posting, usually because you disagree with something they have said. A good flame mixes a razor sharp wit with a devastating put-down so that the other person will only make themselves look silly if they dare disagree -- "The absurdity of your ideas is exceeded only by the incoherence of your remarks, beginning with..."

    "Flame wars" are never allowed on any Rootsweb mail lists and can be grounds for permanent removal from any/all Roots Web mail lists. Again, if you have a problem with a fellow list member, take it up with the List Administrator!

  • Most, if not all, List Administrator's are volunteers! They have lives outside of the mail list you are researching! So please be patient! Some administrators moderate their lists 24/7 while others check in occasionally...



2005-2013 Michael Shaw


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