Setting Up an Email Listserv

A listserv is a great way to manage a mailing list or email-based discussion forum.

Request a Listserv

Please send the following information to listmgr@gmu.edu:

  1. Proposed name of the list (or course name, if course related). Please note that:
    • Only use uppercase letters (A-Z), numbers (0-9), underscore (_), and hyphens (-).
    • Class lists will follow the format of the Schedule of Classes, i.e. Math 101, Section 001 will be Math101-001-L
    • Spaces are not allowed.
    • Has a maximum length of 32 characters (including “-L”).
    • Should be simple yet descriptive.
    • Should be as short as possible without causing confusion.
  2. A short description of the list (purpose and rules)
    This will be added as comments in the list header. People will see it if they REVIEW the list
  3. Name and email address of primary owner, and any additional owners (can be any valid email address)

Additional Configuration Options

To set these additional settings, include answers to the questions below in the email to listmgr@gmu.edu.

All of the below settings can also be changed by the list owner at a later time. Visit the George Mason University LISTSERV page (login required) at for more information about changing list settings.

  • Who can subscribe to the list?
    • By_Owner = only the owner can add subscribers.
    • Public = Open, anyone can join.
  • Who can post messages to the list?
    • Owner – Only the owner may post to the list. Suitable for announcement lists.
    • Editor – Editor will normally send mail to the list. If someone else sends a message, it will be sent to the editor for approval.
    • Private – Only members of the list can post to the list. Good for discussion lists.
    • Public – Anyone can send.
  • Would you like the listname published in the Online List Archives web page?
    A list-of-lists is available on the George Mason University LISTSERV web site.
    • Yes – This list will be listed on the web site.
    • No – This list will not be listed on the web site.
  • Who can view the online archives?
    • Public – Members and non-members can view the list archives. Select this setting for a public discussion list where anyone can view the list.
    • Private – Only members of the list can view the archives. Select this setting for a private discussion list where only list members can view the list archives.
  • Who can view the list of subscribers?
    • Public – Members and non-members can view the list of subscribers. This is not recommended due to privacy issues.
    • Private – Only list members can view the list of subscribers. This is not recommended due to privacy issues.
    • Owner – Only the list owner can view the list of subscribers. This is the recommended setting.
  • To whom should replies go?
    When subscribers respond to a posted message, should that response go back to the list or just to the author? Sending responses back to the list can provide an atmosphere of a discussion group.
    • List – Useful for discussions.
    • Sender – More appropriate for lists that are used for announcement
  • Sponsoring organization or department?
  • Sponsoring Faculty Member?
  • You will receive a confirmation and instructions as soon as your list is ready.

    Last Updated: June 4, 2014