- Guidelines for Composing Mass E-mails
- ITSC Mass Mail Service
Guidelines and Procedures for Submitting a Mass Mail Request
- Resources / Related Topics
University departments/units/societies may need to generate electronic mass
mails of officially-required notification
information, announcement and promotion of
events or activities, etc. through e-mail.
Such mass mails may be accomplished either
by generating temporary, up-to-date, electronic
mailing lists or by other means of collecting
e-mail addresses to reach the target audience.
However, if not sent correctly, mass mails
have the potential to disrupt e-mail service
for tens of thousands of campus e-mail system
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2. Guidelines for Composing Mass E-mails
Sending e-mails with large attachments, especially when reaching large batches of recipients, can cause a high server load on the e-mail system. This may slow down any sending or receiving of e-mails of our users, or even result in overall suspension of e-mail service in extreme cases. To help maintain the high quality of e-mail service for the whole University, you should read the guidelines below before composing your mass e-mail messages:
- Compress multiple files by using WinZip or WinRAR and attach one zip file in the e-mail
- Convert image files from PNG to JPEG format before attaching them to e-mail
- Include links of large files uploaded to external sites instead of attaching them in the e-mail.
- Consider alternative means of mass communication provided by ITSC, such as Mass Mail Service and e-newsletters.
- When sending a large distribution list,
- Check the size of e-mail in draft box before sending. A size of less than 150KB is preferred when sending to a group of over 1000 recipients as it imposes a significant impact on the network traffic.
- Send attachments (more than 1MB) to distribution lists with more than 100 recipients is not recommended.
- Dispatch the e-mail during non-office hours to avoid imposing a heavy load on the e-mail system.
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3. ITSC Mass Mail Service
ITSC provides mass mail service to help university departments/units/societies to dispatch mass mails in an orderly
way. The service has maintained
some standing "all" electronic mailing lists
including "all students", "all staff", "all
postgraduate students" and "all undergraduate
students" lists. University departments/units/societies
can make a request to the ITSC to send e-mails to these groups.
The mass mail service of ITSC also helps university
departments/units/societies dispatching mass mails
to smaller groups of staff or students as long as the
departments/units/societies can provide the staff and
students lists of these groups.
The policies in section 3.2 below govern the mass
mails of ITSC. They are created to protect CWEM
e-mail users from unauthorized mass mails,
and to protect the campus network and the Campus-wide
E-mail System (CWEM) from an overload of e-mail
- Mass mails can only be used for activities
which comply with the University regulations
and policies, the Acceptable
Use Policy of ITSC, and all existing laws including
not only those that are specific to computers
and networks, but also those that may apply
generally to personal conduct.
mails should not be used to advertise or
solicit commercial activities or services.
mails should not be used to "spam" recipients.
- Mass mails that are not of officially-required
notification information, or announcements
and promotions of events or activities
conducted by departments, units or societies will
not be sent.
- The requesting department must
have considered the existing channels of
communication including the CUHK portal,
i.e. the MyCUHK, newsgroup, the web, mailing
list service, i.e. the Mailman Mailing List, which
are more 'recipient-friendly' before consider
requesting the sending of mass mails.
- Mass mails
shall be dispatched by ITSC.
- Mass mail
is a process that imposes significant load
on the Campus-wide E-mail System as well
as the campus network. To ensure
smooth running of the e-mail service for
the whole university, ITSC has the right,
in case the normal service is being jeopardized,
to circumvent the process including early
abortion without consulting
the concerned department/unit/society.
- ITSC will not
provide the list of e-mail addresses for the
- The process of handling
a mass mail request includes vetting
and dispatching it. The deadline of submitting mass mail requests is 1 pm on the dispatching day. Requests made after the deadline will be considered in next dispatching.
- Mass mails to the aforesaid "all"
groups will be consolidated and dispatched
in form of a digest. Different kinds of
mass mails might be grouped into different
- It is ITSC's decision as when the
digests of mass mails will be dispatched.
Normally, mass mail digests will be sent on the last working day of a week.
- Mass mails will be sent to e-mail address, which is in the form of email@example.com of their recipients.
- ITSC DOES NOT and no
way can guarantee the staff/students
will read the message delivered to
- Some staff or students may type in an invalid e-mail address. The result is, the message cannot be delivered and will be bounced back to the sender. Therefore, the department/unit should prepare to receive these bounced back e-mails.
following disclaimer will be added
to mass mails to distinguish them
from other e-mails or mass mails:
"This e-mail is sent by ITSC
to recipients on the request of our Department/Unit/Society. If you have any queries or comments regarding
the policies and guidelines for mass
mails by ITSC please check at http://www.cuhk.edu.hk/itsc/about/mass-mailing.html or submit them to ITSC Electronic HelpDesk
For comments and enquiries related
to this message, please send to Department/Unit/Society
e-mail contact. ------ Department/Unit/Society"
NOTE: details of "recipients", "Department/Unit/Society
e-mail contact" and "Department/Unit/Society"
are to be supplied by requesting department/unit/society
3.3 Guidelines and Procedures for Submitting a Mass Mail Request
authorized person of the department/unit and student organization
must submit the request to ITSC at https://helpdesk.itsc.cuhk.edu.hk/group/cumassmailing with the following information :
Target Recipients :
Requesting Department/Unit/Society (In English
Sender's Contact Tel. No. :
Message E-mail Address (This must be a CUHK e-mail address and would appear in the "From" field of your message):
Message Subject (In English : Mandatory)
Message Content (In Chinese AND English
is preferred) :
will be rejected should any of the above
- Only authorized persons representing departments/units may request the sending of mass mails by ITSC. Student organizations must use their computing accounts to submit the request.
- A request to send a mass mail to a wrong group will be rejected.
- Same information will not be dispatched more than two times.
- No individual may request the sending of mass mails by ITSC.
- In case mass mails are not for any one of the aforesaid "all" groups, it is the department's responsibility to provide the IDs, i.e. staff/student IDs, of the recipients. Mass mails of this kind will be sent on its own and on a date to be mutually agreed by the requesting department and the ITSC.
- No information should be submitted as attachment.
- The size of the message should be less than 5K.
- Chinese characters must be in Big5 codes and plain text format.
- The message subject MUST be no more than 300 characters in English and/or 80 characters in Chinese (including spaces and symbols).
An individual officially acts on behalf of a
department or unit.
E-mail transmitted to a large number of addressees
and having significant potential to negatively
impact network or mail system performance. (Although
an exact lower limit cannot be specifically quantified,
most cases of campus mailings to 1,000 or more
users should be considered "mass
Dissemination required by law, policy, health
and safety, or other very compelling reasons.
To exploit broadcast systems for purposes beyond
their intended scope to amplify the widespread
distribution of unsolicited e-mail.
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Resources / Related Topics
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User Support Division
Information Technology Services Centre
Version 2, May 2010