ITS Service Desk

Why am I receiving email sent to this list?

If you are receiving emails sent to an email list and you're not sure why, there are a few possible reasons:

  1. The membership of many of our email lists is maintained automatically. For example, all staff are automatically on the staff email list, all faculty are automatically on the faculty email list, etc. Additionally, all students with declared majors are automatically on the email list for that major. A similar situation exists for individual classes. So in the case of automatically maintained lists, you cannot control that; you're on the list and you'll of course receive all emails sent to the list.

  2. You're on the list because you're an owner (meaning you can send to the list). Most email list solutions have a simple requirement that in order to send email to a list, you have to be on that list. This of course means that you'll also receive all email sent to the list.

    Note: In the email solution we used prior to 2018, we found a loophole in the configuration which allowed us to avoid that basic requirement. But our current solution, Google Groups, follows the common expectation that you have to be on a list in order to send email to the list.

  3. If you're an owner on the list (meaning you can send to the list), you'll also receive emails that list members send to the owners. Sometimes this happens if a list member simply replies to a message asking about the list. When you receive such a message, if you don't know what to do with it, then just delete it; you don't need to notify ITS that you received it.

  4. Your department email address is on the list, and you receive a copy of all email sent to your department email address.

You can see a list of all of the email lists that you're on by visiting the Email Lists web page. If you have delegated access to your department email address, this page will also allow you to see those email lists.

Knowing the above possibilities, we recommend that you review all of the lists that you're on as well as all of the lists that your department email account is on. Perhaps you don't need the ability to send email to a list. Or perhaps, only your department needs that ability, but you don't personally need it. After reviewing the current settings, let us know if you need any changes.

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