At MIT, all community members – faculty, staff, students, and affiliates – can create and subscribe to MIT email lists. People who don’t have a Kerberos account can’t create MIT email lists, but can subscribe to them.
Information Systems and Technology (IS&T) offers two email list services: Moira and Mailman. Each has different features and benefits, so if you plan to create an email list, find out which one will best meet your needs.
Moira is a good choice for simple, small mailing lists or discussion lists where all replies are sent to the list. Any email sent to a Moira list is immediately forwarded to the members of the list. No spam filtering or other moderation is available.
Any MIT user can set up a Moira list; membership can be managed through tools on Athena or the WebMoira List Manager.
Mailman is suitable for all list sizes, including high-traffic email lists – a good choice for sending announcements.
Mailman offers list moderation, spam filtering, archiving, and digest mode. Moderation lets you approve who can subscribe or post to a list; you can also configure a Mailman list to allow people to subscribe to it.
If turned on, digest mode bundles emails together. It’s typical to get one bundle a day, but on busy lists there can be more.
Mailman lists are generally more work for the moderator: mail that is held for moderation will need to be examined and sent out or discarded.
While Mailman lists can’t be used for access control, Mailman does offer a robust set of administrative controls and many configuration options.
A table in IS&T’s Knowledge Base (KB) gives a quick side-by-side comparison of Moira and Mailman features.
Ready to set up a list?
Visit IS&T's Email Lists page for a summary of features and links for setting up a list. For more detailed instructions, see "How can I create an email list?" in the Knowledge Base (KB). You can also contact the IS&T Service Desk for help.