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Sending a Broadcast Email Message

Version 1.18, Effective Date: February 2006


  1. Any request to send a broadcast email message to students, faculty and/or staff in more than one school or administrative unit must be approved by the Deans or Senior Administrators of all the affected units; or the Provost or Senior Executive Vice President for Administration; or authorized by a resolution of the University Senate.Where the members of affiliated institutions are to be included, the President, Provost, or other authorized official of each institution must approve the inclusion of its members in the mailing.
  2. After the message is authorized, the sender must contact the appropriate office:
    1. For mailings to Columbia students: Call or email Student Information Systems (SIS) at 212-854-2989 or to request list setup.
    2. For mailings to Columbia faculty or staff: Call or send email to Human Resources at 212-851-2855 or
    3. For combined mailings to Columbia students, faculty, and/or staff: Call the CUIT Service Desk at 212-854-1919.
    4. For mailings including members of other institutions: Access to lists and sending messages must be arranged with the appropriate offices at those institutions.
  3. The timing of the message must be approved by the Manager of CUIT Email Systems or a representative, to ensure that it will not disrupt the email system. Normally, delivery will be scheduled to begin after 8:00 PM. Call 212-854-1919 for assistance.The sender may also request, from the postmaster (, a special shared email file for any responses to the mailing. See the CUIT Shared Mail page for instructions.
  4. The sender of the message will be given authorization to use the list only for the approved message.
  5. The headers of the message or the mailing list must include a Reply-to: with an individual, group, or file address where replies will be received and responded to as appropriate. This need not be the sender. As noted above, reply mailboxes can be requested from that the mailing lists are set up so that individual recipients cannot reply to the lists or send messages to them.The Reply-to: address should also be mentioned in the text of the message and a telephone number and office address for other inquiries should also be given.
  6. The message body must be in plain text and the lines must be less than 80 characters in length, 65 character lines are recommended.
  7. The inclusion of attachments in broadcast messages is not allowed because of the possibility of spreading a virus and possible incompatibility with a recipient's system.
  8. Except in emergencies, five working days notice is required for any such mailing. In any case, several hours may be required to set up such a mailing, and the message is sent in batches over another several hours so as not to compromise normal email delivery.