Do not use automatic e-mail reply programs.
To do so creates a mess, as they generate a message for each message received. Because you
receive a copy of any message sent to the list, you create an infinite loop. If this
happens, you will be unsubscribed from the list as soon as the problem is detected, but in
the meantime you will have annoyed your colleagues on the list. (If you feel you need to
use these programs, write the list manager and ask to be unsubscribed while you are away.
You can be resubscribed to the list when you return.)
Do not turn on any feature that confirms receipt or
reading of an e-mail message. This creates the same problem as the automatic
reply programs, and similar remedies will result.
Do not send file attachments to the list that
included special formatting. This means any documents saved as .doc, .wpd, .html,
.ppt, .pdf, .jpg, .gif, .tiff, or other file formats that utilize large amounts of
character space. The reason for this is we have only a limited space on our host server
for messages exchanged through the list; for most lists, it is 40,000 characters per
message. This is not very much. If you must send an attachment, please save in Rich Text
Format (.rtf). RTF removes fancy formatting inserted by word processors and other software
that uses valuable character space. Otherwise, simply post a message stating that you have
a document and that interested persons should contact you directly for an emailed copy.
Avoid posting extremely long messages. Not
only is the message less likely to be read because most people do not want to read long
documents online, but also some list members may never even see it if the message is
rejected by their systems.
Before you "send" a message, make sure
your message is addressed appropriately. Be careful to send to the list only
items that will interest everyone on the list. Personal replies should go directly to the
individual. (Check your e-mail program to ensure that you do not automatically reply to
everyone, otherwise a personal response can end up on the list to your surprise and
Direct all list problems to list manager. Problems
with the list or difficulties unsubscribing from the list should go to the list manager.
Make it easy for people to respond to you directly.
Include your e-mail address and other contact information at the end of your message.
Also, this is helpful in highlighting your expertise or professional experience to other
Please adhere to the following guidelines for content
Always keep to the topic and purpose of the list.
The more topic-specific contributions are, the more useful the list is for everyone. Try
to resist the urge to send helpful e-mail about current viruses or breaking news to the
list. There are other outlets for this type of information.
Do not send chain letters, spam, or any message
that can be construed as commercial in nature.
Always, always be courteous. Do not
subject any list member to a personal attack. Do not use profanity.
If a message angers you, wait until you are calm before responding. Posting messages
containing personal attacks and profanity are grounds for immediate removal from the list.
Problems with another list member's posting should be
directed to the list manager, not the individual member. No list member should criticize
another; problems should be dealt with by the list manager.
Do not post private e-mail to the list that you
have received from someone else without their express permission to do so.
Do not post copyrighted materials.
Use descriptive subject lines. The subject
line is the main access point for archived lists and for following a specific discussion.
If you are responding to a message, preface its subject line with "Re:". This
makes following an e-mail discussion (or thread of a discussion) much easier for
Be concise. Quote from a message you are
replying to as necessary, but only quote what is necessary to understand your reply. You
may choose to summarize a lengthy discussion instead of quoting it, but be careful to be
Do not post messages in all caps. This is
the equivalent of shouting.
Keep your line length under 80 characters per line. Under 72 is better. Longer lines may wrap and be difficult to read.
The less formatting the better. Some
e-mail reader software insert formatting that can make reading the message more difficult
for people using ASCII readers or other UNIX programs.