The rollout of EagleMail, EMU’s new e-mail system, has brought a number of changes to the University community. Among these are removal of quotas, implementation of additional features, and many user options. At the same time, new policies, procedures and industry best practices have been adopted within the system.
One best practice that directly affects a number of our users is a limit of 50 individual recipient addresses for each message. We have learned that a number of department heads, faculty and others on campus regularly send e-mail messages to groups of more than 50 recipients. The information below explains the limit on message recipients, and details our near-term and long-term solutions for those who need to send to more recipients.
Q: Why is there a limit of 50 individual addresses?
A: (You can actually send to as many recipients as you like, but these recipients need to be part of a pre-defined, aggregated address list – a listserv. This is a central university resource that is available to you today; more information is in the next section below.)
There are two main reasons for the individual recipient limit:
First, all outgoing e-mail is now being scanned through EMU’s IronPort system for viruses and spam. This is an important step in security and in protecting EMU’s e-mail from becoming blacklisted by major Internet service providers such as Yahoo, Gmail, AOL and others. Scanning every outgoing message takes time – a tiny fraction of time, but it adds up. The time is multiplied by the number of recipient addresses in each message. Therefore, adding more recipients creates a performance issue within the system.
Second, limiting the number of recipients provides a measure of protection against worms that can be introduced into the system and send out tens of thousands of messages within seconds from an unsuspecting user’s account.
The limit of 50 individual recipients per message is actually higher than many corporations and organizations will allow. A standard individual recipient limit is 20 or 30. One of the main reasons is that using listservs is not only faster and more efficient, but is the industry-standard way to reach large numbers of recipients. It also protects individual users from having their e-mail addresses unintentionally revealed to groups of other users.
Q: What is EMU doing to help me send messages out to larger lists of people?
A: EMU continues to provide the option for users to create lists (listservs) of recipients that can be called up at any time. This option saves the sender time and provides other benefits as described above.
We realize that not everyone knows how to create lists, and, static lists do require additional maintenance (adding and deleting members). Thus, the Division of IT is offering the following solutions for users who need to send messages to lists of more than 50 individual recipient addresses:
Please contact the Help Desk at 734.487.2120 if you have any questions about this information. Thank you for your continued cooperation as we work to develop technology solutions that best serve the EMU community.