3  Stop Spamming Ourselves

The Information Technology Advisory Committee recently discussed the issue of members of the Eastern Community sending email messages to global lists (such as faculty@easternct.edu or admin@easternct.edu) to which individuals, usually unintentionally, reply to the entire list with their responses by using “Reply All”. This tendency leads to many unnecessary email messages sent to the entire university community, effectively spamming ourselves. It is especially annoying when the original message involves a spam attempt itself that is just proliferated when users reply to the entire list that they too have had a similar email.

The Advisory Committee considered several options and decided that the best approach is to advise the university community that there are two techniques that will significantly reduce this annoyance. One involves how best to send a message to one of the global lists, and the other in how best to reply. Following these two recommendations will drastically reduce the number of email messages that appear in everyone’s email Inbox.

First, senders should put the global list address in the BCC: line of the email message instead of the TO: line. That way, regardless of how a user might respond, it will not be sent to the entire list. Second, unless a respondent truly wants to reply to the entire list (usually a rarity) respondents should use the “Reply” option and not the “Reply All” option. Some email applications list “Reply All” as the default and users will have to select the “Reply” option in those cases.

The Committee encourages everyone to follow these two simple practices to reduce the amount of email in everyone’s Inbox.