ITS and UVa logos for printed output

Mailing List Services


If you have the name of a listserv mailing list to which you would like to subscribe, or unsubscribe, the following instructions may be helpful. The information applies to most listserv mailing lists. UVa does not, at the present time, offer listserv mailing lists. If you receive mail only from UVa mailing lists, you do not need these instructions.

Subscribing to Listservs

To join the list, compose an electronic mail message to:

where is the place where the list to which you want to subscribe originates; in other words, you replace with the name of the place where the list to which you want to subscribe originates.

Subject lines are ignored by most listservs, so you may omit this or you may put something similar to:

subscribe hoos-r-best

so that you will recognize this message should you see it again.

In the message text, put:

subscribe hoos-r-best your name

where hoos-r-best is the name of the list to which you want to subscribe and your name is your real name, first and last.

You should receive a message from the listserv about the success of this process. Note: this message is automated so do not reply to the message you receive. This message usually contains information on how to leave the list, so you may want to save it for later use.

Unsubscribing from Listservs

If you are:

  • leaving UVa (even if only for a break, a holiday or the summer)
  • are migrating/being moved from one electronic mail system to another within UVa

and you subscribe to any listserv mailing lists, please unsubscribe before you leave/change mail systems. If you are receiving messages from one or more lists now, this will continue while you are not using your mailbox and it will continue to grow, unnecessarily using disk space.

These instructions will work only if you send your message to leave the list from the same email address used to join the list. If you joined a list by sending a message from your email account on the UVA Exchange Service, you must send your unsubscription request from that email address and system as well. Remember that you are communicating with an automated computer program that does not reconcile messages that arrive from two different addresses.

For these examples, assume you have subscribed to a mailing list named hoos-r-best that comes from system

When you first join a mailing list, the list administrator usually sends you an introductory welcome message that includes information about unsubscribing. Use those instructions if you still have them.

Do not send your request to unsubscribe to because that goes out to all the list subscribers. This action is considered very rude.

If you have no idea how to unsubscribe from the listserv that sends messages to you, here are three methods that often work. Try them in the order listed. Remember: for the purposes of these examples, the listserv mailing list is named hoos-r-best. (The To: line of a message from the list may show the message as being addressed to:

Method 1:

Compose an electronic mail message to the listserv

where is the place where the list you want to leave originates.

Enter a one-line message whose content is:

signoff hoos-r-best

where hoos-r-best is the name of the list you want to leave.

Method 2:

Compose an electronic mail message to the list administrator

where hoos-r-best is the name of the list you are trying to leave and is the place where the list originates.

In your email, ask the human who will receive this message to remove you from the hoos-r-best mailing list. Remember, a message to a -request address usually goes to a real person, so it may take awhile to get an acknowledgement. On the other hand, the address may not exist, resulting in a rejection.

Method 3:

Compose an electronic mail message to the postmaster:

where is the place where the list you are trying to leave originates.

In your email, politely ask the postmaster for help leaving the hoos-r-best list. Almost every site has a postmaster, who is usually a real person and may have time to help you out.

If none of the above work for you, please contact and ask for assistance with leaving the list. It will help the UVa postmaster if you will include a copy of a message you have received from the list, with its full headers, as well as what you have done to try to leave the list.

Page Updated: 2017-06-13