LISTSERV Etiquette

Often referred to as “netiquette”, LISTSERV Etiquette are informal rules and procedures established for users of e-mail and LISTSERV mailing lists to provide some simple guidelines to make these electronic communication tools more enjoyable and less annoying or bothersome.

  1. Be sure to include a descriptive subject line. E-mails received with no subject line may likely be perceived as spam by an email filter and be deleted before reaching the recipient's inbox.
  2. Responses to many LISTSERV® list questions and discussion topics are of interest to the entire list. In these cases, it is appropriate to reply to the LISTSERV® list address.
  3. Personal replies should be directed to specific individuals rather than to the entire list. Remember to cut and paste the sender’s e-mail address when replying rather than simply hitting the “Reply” button which sends the response to the entire list. Below are some examples of replies sent to an entire list in the past,
    • 'Thanks.'
    • 'Thanks. Hope you are well. All the best.'
    • 'Yes.' or 'No, unfortunately.' (Both were sent in response to a reply also sent to the list as to whether an individual had a specific software program.)
    • 'I would also.' (Sent as response to whether additional info was desired)
    • 'I would like more information. Could you e-mail me directly?'
    • 'Thanks, this will be very helpful. Sorry for the delay in replying.'
    • 'Welcome!' (Response to someone introducing themselves as a new subscriber.)
  4. If you receive a notice that your original e-mail was 'rejected' or you received a 'delivery error', find out the reason for the rejection before resending the message so people do not receive duplicate e-mails. Often times, the error was in response to a problem with a single recipient's email and the message was indeed sent and received by many other list subscribers.
  5. NACADA LISTSERV lists may not be used for the solicitation, promotion, or sales of commercial products or services. Violaters will be immediately removed from the LISTSERV list(s)
  6. NACADA LISTSERV lists may not be used for campaign purposes by NACADA members running for an elected leadership position. Violaters will be immediately removed from the LISTSERV list(s)
  7. NACADA LISTSERV lists may not be used to promote or engage in political activities as it is a violation of our 501(c) status. Violaters will be immediately removed from the LISTSERV list(s).
  8. NACADA LISTSERV lists may not be used for posting job announcements or position descriptions.  Submit job announcements on NACADA's Position Announcements page.
  9. NACADA LISTSERV lists may not be used for posting of course offerings or programs at your institution. 
  10. NACADA LISTSERV lists are not to be used as personal blogs. There are many free online sites that are designed specifically for posting those random thoughts and ideas and offering others the opportunity to follow those postings. LISTSERV, on the other hand are intended for distributing topic-related information that the list members as a group might benefit from sharing.
  11. Be respectful and considerate of your colleagues in your postings. If you disagree or become upset with someone's response or use of the list, reply to that person directly when appropriate.
  12. Become familiar with the features, settings, options and other capabilities of your e-mail client system. 
  13. If the amount of mail from any particular list becomes cumbersome, rather than leaving that list,consider receiving the digest form of the list. Instead of getting each email individually, you will receive a summary email at the end of each day. Individual subscribers need to request this function directly for each LISTSERV list to which they are subscribed.
  14. Be aware of the problems caused when using auto-responders or auto-replies to messages received via a mailing list. Our LISTSERV system will generate error messages to the mailing list owners about each auto-reply received and will eventually result in your being 'served off' the list, disabling your ability to send messages to the list. Please remember to either temporarily turn off your mailing list messages, or set your email auto-replies to not respond to messages from our LISTSERV lists (i.e. [email protected]).
  15. Turn off mail from the list(s) when going on vacation. NOMail is the command that stops mail but leaves you subscribed to the list. Please note, if you use an auto-responder while on vacation without setting your subscription options to NOMail, your 'out of office' messages may bounce back to LISTSERV and you may be 'served off' from lists when you return.
  16. Many members realize that mistakes do happen and choose to simply hit the 'delete' button when many e-mails are received that are of no interest or do not apply to them. However, if everyone would consider the guidelines above regarding e-mail and LISTSERV® use, cyberspace might be a more pleasant experience for everyone!  Thank you for your cooperation and consideration of these guidelines.