A mailing list is a database of people on the Internet interested in the same topic. These lists enable you to send a single e-mail message to many people who are subscribed to the list you chose. Some examples of lists are golfers, people getting married, or teachers of the hearing impaired. This can all be done using your personal e-mail address. Any e-mail sent to the mailing list is automatically resent to everyone who has joined the same list.
- There are moderated and unmoderated mailing lists.
- A moderated list is one that is "moderated" by an administrator. They "sift" through the incoming mail and weeds out duplicate messages, or get rid of inappropriate ones.
- An unmoderated list contains all mail re-sent by the mail reflector.
Listservers are the most automated of all. This is a mainframe computer that all incoming messages are sent to. The mainframe in turn distributes all of the messages it receives for the particular list to all of the subscribers. You can use a list server to automatically subscribe to a mailing list. This is done my including your own e-mail address into the e-mail message you send to sign up. *Note: This is all done using commands that the computer can read.
Joining a mailing list is a simple process. First you need to send an e-mail message to the list's administrator, asking to subscribe to the list. The administrator will send you back a message letting you know you have been added to the list, and will give you the address of the actual list. *Note: This new address is different from the administrators! When you wish to get on or off of the list you need to write the ADMINISTRATOR -not- the actual list. This process of subscribing could take a few minutes or a few days, depending on the size of the list.
- When subscribing to a listserv (which is a computer) you will need to only type in the commands. Send an e-mail to the listserv at their port as such:
- Then type in the following command (may vary according to list):
- subscribe [name of list] [you own name]
- (*Note: You may also un-subscribe the same way using "unsubscribe" instead)
- After you have subscribed, you will begin to receive mail from the list. You will be sent the actual address of the list where you can send your messages to. You will also receive a welcome message from the list's "administrator", telling you a bit about it. You will probably want to send an introduction e-mail message to the list to let people know who you are as well as to see if your message goes through.
A good starting place is a listing of available mailing lists. An extensive one can be found on the World Wide Web at this address:
- http://tile.net or click here
- In the box you can write in the topic of interest you are looking for. This will take you to a listing of available mailing lists according to your topic.