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Introduction to Lists
Once you subscribe to a list, you'll receive mail every time someone posts a message to the list, or once a day if you subscribe to a digest version. In most cases, you'll receive guidelines for participating from the list owner - make sure you stick to them. Commercial messages, chain letters, and similar types of mail are generally not welcome. It's also a good idea to read the list for awhile before posting in order to see what kinds of things are being discussed and also to get a feel for the general atmosphere. Your first post should introduce yourself to other members and give any background or interest you have in the particular subject. After you join a list, you're guaranteed to get lots of email and meet many different types of people!
There are at least five popular mail server programs used to manage Internet discussion lists: LISTSERV, LISTPROC, Majordomo, mailbase, and Mailserv. Most lists have one address for such administrative requests and another for posts to the list members. Be sure that you are addressing your mail to the appropriate address and remember to never put a period at the end of an e-mail address or a URL.
The commands for subscribing and unsubscribing under most of these list server programs are the same. Many of them state that your command should be in the body of the e-mail message and that the subject line be left blank. Some will specify that you require a subject line. In any case, don't add a signature file to your message since the list server may try to interpret it as part of your command. A list of the most commonly used commands for each of the five different mail server programs can be found at http://lawlib.slu.edu/training/mailser.htm.
There are thousands of email lists on topics that would be of interest to women but I won't be attempting to show all of them here. Instead, you'll find a sampling of lists that are geared towards women and technology, women's studies as well as a few other general discussion lists. If you don't find anything you like, the best place to find information on women's email lists is a site called Women and Gender-Related Electronic Forums. There you will find up-to-date information on how to subscribe to hundreds of different women's lists from around the world.