Three Types of Lists!
Town Discussion Lists for content pertaining to a specific community
- More than 40 Upper Valley towns and cities have their own lists
- Click HERE to see the full roster of lists and then click on a list name to subscribe
Upper Valley Lists that serve the entire region
vitalcommunities.org for one-time and recurring EVENTS, both free and charging admission;
vitalcommunities.org: for ITEMS for sale, wanted, or free;
vitalcommunities.org: for all other items, including SERVICES for sale, wanted, or free.
- Click on the links to go to the Lists’ homepages and subscribe
- Learn more about these lists here
General Posting Guidelines
NOTE: Posting Guidelines vary somewhat from one list to another. When you subscribe to a list, please read and follow its specific guidelines.
Keep It Local: Community Discussion Lists prioritize content about the community they serve, and some lists exclude all non-local content. Check the Guidelines for the particular list you have subscribed to and abide by any reminders from the List Manager.
Keep It Civil: Lists are meant to unify communities, not divide them. In your posts, treat your fellow subscribers with respect. When addressing potentially divisive topics, focus on policies and actions rather than people and their intents. Abide by any reminders from the List Manager.
Limit Commercial Postings: Lists are meant to be more than free advertising. If you are advertising new services and products being sold in a particular town, you may post to that town’s list. Otherwise, use the appropriate Upper Valley List.
No Anonymous Posts: If your first and last names are not obvious from your email address, please sign your post.
Keep It Plain: Be succinct and eliminate excess spaces so that your posts don’t require lots of scrolling to get past. Use plain text only, with no graphics, and give the URL to links
- It is free to subscribe to the Lists, and Vital Communities does not collect or use subscriber emails or subscriber information.
- List subscription is a privilege, not a right, and is predicated on following the Posting Guidelines for that list
- Each List is managed by a volunteer List Manager
Subscribe to a List
- Go to lists.vitalcommunities.org/lists/lists
- Click on the name of the list you are interested in joining
- Read the text on the home page for that list, paying special attention to the Posting Guidelines
- In the left column, click on Subscribe
- Check your email for notification that you have been admitted
Make a Post
- Open your email program. If you have more than one email address, make sure you open the one you subscribed to the list from.
- In “To,” put LISTNAME@lists.vitalcommunities.org. Be careful NOT to send to LISTNAMEemail@example.com (that just emails the List Manager)
- In “Subject,” write the headline you want to appear on your post, as in this example:
- Your message will go out immediately to everyone receiving the posts in real time and will be added to the digest to go out the next day. Once made, posts cannot be edited or deleted by the List Manager, so think before you post!
- If your post violated the guidelines for that list, you will get a polite email from the List Manager informing you of that fact and either giving you a second chance or placing you on the “blocklist.” Blocklisted subscribers still receive posts but cannot make them.
- Feel free to proactively email the List manager at LISTNAMEfirstname.lastname@example.org to check if content is appropriate for a particular list.
Respond When Subscribers Violate the Posting Guidelines
- Write to the manager of that list by emailing LISTNAMEemail@example.com and describe the problem. The manager will act according to their best judgment. If they feel the need to contact the violator, they will do so by private email.
- Please refrain from posting a complaint to the list. Posting to the list can cause confusion, especially when the manager is already interacting with the violator. More often than not, posts about violations make violators more defensive and subsequent discussions can cause more confusion and bad feelings for all subscribers.
Set Up a New List
Be a List Manager
Find a Past Message in a List Archive
Go to https://lists.vitalcommunities.org/lists/lists and scroll to the list you are interested in, click on it, then click on “Archive” in the column on the left. Use the buttons to find the messages by the date they were posted.
How do the Community Discussion Lists work?
Discussion Lists allow subscribers of a community to post and respond to email messages about the geographic area or topic a particular list focuses on.
Subscribers can receive list postings as they are made or in a daily digest. Email the List Manager to change from one mode to another.
Each list has a volunteer Manager who is available to answer questions and to help subscribers follow the posting guidelines.
The Community Discussion Lists are not “official” town communications. They are set up and managed by volunteer community members, not by the town government. Vital Communities works with these Managers to facilitate the overall process.
Who owns the Discussion Lists?
The lists are owned by Vital Communities, a nonprofit corporation, and are governed by the guidelines Vital Communities sets.* Vital Communities operates the lists as part of its mission to help build community and create equitable solutions to our region’s challenges. Membership on a list is a privilege, not a right, and is predicated on conforming to the Posting Guidelines.
*On the home page for particular lists, the individuals listed as “owners” of particular lists are actually List Managers. It’s just a quirk of the platform that we can’t change!
Who can read postings on my List?
Posts made to a list are publicly visible immediately to anyone who receives that list’s postings in real time and are added to the digest that goes out the next day. Managers do not see or approve posts before they are made visible. Once made, posts cannot be deleted, so think – and proofread – before you post! To err is human, so go ahead and post a correction!
Can posts be deleted?
Emails sent to a list are publicly visible immediately, and anyone anywhere can see anything that is sent to this list (nonsubscribers can view postings on the archive page). This means that the public, including third-party services, can see and share whatever is sent to the lists.
In other words, once made, posts cannot be deleted, so think – and proofread – before you post!
Can I "embed" a link in a post?
You can add live links to any post simply by copying the URL or web address of that page from the top space of your browser and pasting into your post. This is the best practice because it shows subscribers the actual web address they are clicking on so that they know it is not some link that will infect their computer with malicious software.
So, while some email programs allow you to “embed” links in a post under different text ( ex: “Go to the Vital Communities website“), and some free online services allow you to shorten long and complicated URLs, we do not recommend doing either of these in your listserv posts — nor do we recommend clicking on links that could be suspicious!
My post wasn't shared - why?
If you have been blocklisted from a list, you can receive posts but not make them. See “What does it mean to be blocklisted?”
If you haven’t been blocklisted, you post may not have appeared because:
- you sent it to LISTNAMEfirstname.lastname@example.org, which goes to the List Manager, rather than LISTNAME@lists.
vitalcommunities.org, which posts to the list
- you sent it from a different email address than the one through which you subscribed to the list
If you continue to have problems, email the List Manager (LISTNAMEemail@example.com) and make it clear in the subject line that you are having a problem!
What does it mean to be "blocklisted"?
Being blocklisted for a particular list means that you can still read the posts made to the List but cannot make posts yourself.
Being blocklisted happens when someone repeatedly or egregiously violated the Posting Guidelines for that list.
In the case of a moderate violation, the List Manager usually will send the violator a private email warning them that repeated violations will result in blocklisting. In the case of a violation the List Manager feels is particularly egregious, the violator may blocklisted without a warning.
My message was rejected because of an attachment - why?
The lists reject submissions with file attachments, including images and other documents.
If your submission is rejected with this error but you have not attached anything to your message, your message may contain a background pattern or a signature containing a graphic image such as a Twitter, Facebook, or corporate logo. If your message has any of these, the listserv will treat them as attachments. Please try sending your message without the pattern or the signature.
How can I change whether I receive my List as a daily digest or as individual posts?
Subscribers can receive list postings as they are made or in a daily digest. Email your List Manager to change from one mode to another.
How do I contact a List Manager?
If you need help using a List or have concerns about a posting, contact the List Manager by sending an email to: LISTNAMEfirstname.lastname@example.org.
Example 1: To contact the Manager of the List for Brownsville, VT (email@example.com), email:
Example 2: To contact the Manager of the List for the 4 Town Coalition (firstname.lastname@example.org), email:
Which towns already have Lists?
Click here to see the towns that currently have lists administered by Vital Communities.
Are Lists a good way to share emergency messages?
Because most subscribers receive lists in Digest mode, meaning once a day, the lists are not a reliable way to communicate messages with same-day urgency. However, they are an excellent and appropriate way to share longer-term public safety messages.
Vital Communities does not control and assumes no legal or editorial responsibility for any content distributed through the community discussion lists. Content is generated by individual subscribers, who each bear responsibility for their individual postings.
Content posted to the discussion lists is automatically distributed to the subscribers and Vital Communities cannot retract or modify any such content before it is sent to subscribers. All historical content is publicly accessible in the archives (Vital Communities can remove content from the archives after the fact upon request from the original poster).
Volunteer individual discussion list administrators in each town are responsible for post-facto monitoring of the content of a town discussion list and may, at their own discretion, issue private warnings to individual subscribers or public guidelines to the entire discussion list if, in their sole judgment, any of the Posting Guidelines or General Rules are repeatedly violated.