Listserv or Distribution List
This document explains the difference between a listserv and a Distribution list.
Information Technology provides user groups and organizations the ability to create electronic mail (e-mail), listserv and distribution lists to facilitate communication.
Users who are requesting a list that will be used only by faculty, staff, and UWGB students should consider requesting a Public Groups/Distribution Lists for collaboration services. A distribution list is essentially an e-mail address that is used to post messages to multiple persons. For a distribution list, the list's moderator(s) (aka admin; these are individuals who can add and delete members) will maintain the list from within Outlook. A distribution list can also be set as closed so that only members of the list can post messages to the list.
A listserv is similar to a distribution list, except that any person may join or leave the listserv as desired. For a listserv, you can set up a welcome message that is sent to any user who joins the listserv (see sample below). Listservs must be used whenever a list contains off-campus e-mail addresses.
Distribution lists and listservs may be set up as open, closed, or restricted.
- Open: Allows anyone to post to the list, including those who are not subscribed.
- Closed: Only admins of the list may post to the list.
- Restricted: Only designated individuals on the list may post to the list.
Max attachment size for a listserv is 10 MB. Emails to the listserv are sent using Outlook and will have an address similar to
The interface at (https://listweb.uwgb.edu) is used for adding / removing members by list administrators.
If you are uncertain as to whether your needs would be better served by a distribution list or listserv, please contact the IT Help Desk (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 920 465-2309 for assistance.
Sample Welcome Text
Dear List User,
Your subscription to this list has been accepted. Please save this message for future reference, especially if you are not familiar with LISTSERV. To send a message to all the people currently subscribed to the list, just send mail to:
This is known as the LIST address. You may leave the list at any time by sending the message: unsubscribe listname to: Listname@listserv.uwgb.edu. Please note that this command must NOT be sent to the list address but to the LISTSERV address. More information on LISTSERV commands can be found in the LISTSERV reference card, which you can retrieve by sending the command: help to the LISTSERV address.