How to Participate in More Email Lists

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the word email spelled out in keys

by Elaine Luther

There are so many great email lists out there, and they’re such a great way to learn and ask questions. Where else can you have a question about a jewelry project you’re working on and be able to pose the question to 3,000 people at once?

I know some people are hesitant to join lists, because some of them are very high volume, 50 messages or more day. I’m on at least two lists like that — Orchid and Metal Clay Gallery.

I can manage it because of filters — my email program automatically sorts each list into its own folder. If you know how to do that, I highly recommend it. That way, you don’t have to slog through a ton of emails to find the personal ones.

If you don’t know how to do filters, or just don’t want to have all that mail coming into your computer, of course you can always read your list online, via digest, or at the yahoo site.

For me personally, I find reading lists on the web too slow. If that kind of thing is keeping you from participating in lists, and all the benefits and support you can find on them, I have a tip for you.

You can set up a free gmail email account, even one address per list, and read your list on web based gmail. This is faster than reading directly at for example, the group’s yahoo site, and posting a response is faster too.

Another huge benefit of setting up separate email accounts for each of your high volume lists, is searchability.

Do you ever find yourself going, “I know I read that answer, that I didn’t need then, but now desperately need, on the list,” but then you can’t find it, either on your computer, or in the list’s archives?

Gmail solves this beautifully by giving you more storage than you’ll ever need, so you can keep all your list emails there forever, if you want to, and have a way to search it that is faster, easier and more effective than the one at your list’s archives.

It’s easy to create a gmail account and it’s free. If you aren’t bothered by the idea of having multiple email addresses, I think it’s a great tip that can really help.

How do you manage your email lists? Have a great tip to share? Please post a comment, thanks!

Update: in a funny case of blogging synchronisity, Lorelle has a great post on Gmail too, with tons of links and tips.

One Response to “How to Participate in More Email Lists”

  1. knitsteel on 24 Mar 2008 at 8:54 pm

    I unsubscribed from Orchid recently. It was finally too much! It’s also impossible to put on a vacation hold. I tried it last time, as directed in the faq, and still got all of the email every day.

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