A Better Way To Set Up Your Genealogy Society’s Email

In the course, of doing publicity for various genealogy events, I’ve run into this problem many times:

After compiling a distribution list of all the chapters in the area, I send an announcement about a particular event. Inevitably, several of them bounce as they are often older, inactive personal email addresses. Even some that do go through don’t get to the right person. Since officers change frequently, often the person I send the message to is no longer in the corresponding secretary position (or president, or whoever was listed as the contact), and they then have to forward the email to someone else, or ask me to resend it.

While I’m sure that some societies already do this, wouldn’t it make sense that each society have a one, set email address for each particular board or committee position? This address could then be configured to forward messages to the personal email addresses of whoever is currently in that position. Setting up that forwarding is pretty painless, and doesn’t require that you have a technical guru on staff.

For example, if I am trying to send something to the newsletter editor at the Anycounty Genealogical Society. Looking on their website or other online listings, I would see that the email address is “AGS_Newsletter@gmail.com”, and all the other offices have similar addresses (AGS_President@gmail.com, AGS_Programs@gmail.com, etc). If Jane Smith were the editor in September, and I sent her an article, it would go to the AGS_News address and be forwarded to her personal email address. When I want to send something else in February, unbeknownst to be, the new newsletter editor is John Jones. Since, the AGS folks were slightly tech-savy, and updated the forwarding address to John Jones’s personal email – the message I send to the AGS_News address automatically goes to the correct person.

I don’t need to update my contacts list. They don’t need to try and forward things or remember to pass on the message at the next meeting. No muss, no fuss – just easy-peasy.

I am definitely going to suggest this at the next round of society meetings I attend. Would this work for your society, too?

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