Mail List Guidelines

I am admin for many mail lists hosted by Rootsweb and quite a few more hosted by Google and Yahoo.  You’re here, probably, because you’re a member of one of those lists and I have sent a link to this page through that list.

Welcome!  🙂

First of all I would like to say I am very lenient with my mail lists.  There may be what some call *chit chat* through most of the lists…and I’m ok with that as long as it doesn’t get out of hand.

The Below guidelines will help everyone to have an enjoyable experience and get the most out of their time on our mail lists.

1.  Do not forward mail through the list unless you actually wrote it.  for example, if cousin Billy sends you an e-mail with a bit of information you would like others to see, do not send that through the list.  Instead, invite cousin Billy to join the list and share the information.    Another option, extract only part of the message and ask cousin Billy for permission to share.  Keep the email he sends giving permission and then feel free to share.  Forwarding messages from others is a violation of their copyright.

2.  Be very careful posting personal information.  Be aware that everything you post is being archived at  Anyone with an internet connection can join the list and see what you post or search the archives.  Please do not post personal addresses or phone numbers.

3.  Please refrain from posting any information on living individuals.  When bringing a line down to a living person, insert the word *Living*.

4.  If you have a website that would be of use to those on the list please feel free to advertise your url to the list no more than once per week.

5.  If something isn’t related to genealogy or it ends with the phrase “Please send this to everyone you know!” please do not send it to our list.  If you really want to but aren’t sure if you should send me a message and I’ll let you know if it needs to go through the list.

6.  No selling through the lists.  Companies selling anything will be immediately banned.  Individuals selling through the list will be put on moderation *unless* they received prior permission from me to post.  I will usually allow an individual to post their personal genealogy books that relate to the topic of the list for sale on the list, provided no dollar amount is mentioned in your post, and there are no more than 4 items for sale.

7.  Don’t forget to post your family information and queries!


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3 Responses to “Mail List Guidelines”

  1. I have a query regarding Rule #3. Obituaries often contain information about living persons, usually when they (and spouses) are listed as surviving. I have always taken that information as already in the public domain. Would you consider including such information as a violation of the rules for the list? (Same regarding information on headstones!) Clarification would be appreciated, for which many thanks.

  2. Hi Douglass,
    Information may be public domain, that doesn’t necessarily mean we should post it. Always use your best judgement….and if there are living people just drop me a message privately and I’ll help you to decide if it should be posted.

  3. Well done. Thank you for the information.

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