MHJC Member Listserv

MHJClive is an optional email listserv for MHJC members. It can be used to share ideas, discoveries and information among MHJC members, as well as to look for a babysitter, recommend a plumber, share holiday recipes, look for a job, and recommend a good book to read. The topics are endless!

Our listserv is moderated to prevent inappropriate emails from being posted. Please take a minute a read our email “Netiquette” below.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our moderator. Members of the listserve can post by e-mailing the group.

The Ten Commandments of Netiquette

I. Avoid lashon hara (“evil tongue”)

Before posting, always think about the community—hundreds of readers—each of whom will take your words differently. Is your message sufficiently respectful, clear, and concise? Judaism ranks lashon hara (“the evil tongue”) among the greatest sins; frequent violators will be terminated from their listserv subscription.

II. Keep postings relevant

The listserv is primarily for matters of interest to our community. While that obviously covers a wide range of topics—cultural, religious, social, etc.—keep in mind that your message will be sent to some 160 busy MHJC households. “Less is more”—please do not inundate the list with irrelevant or unimportant posts. Be careful about political expressions. Not everyone shares your views.

III. Keep personal postings private

When you want to write or respond to an individual, don’t hit the reply button; your reply will go to the whole list if you do. To send your personal message  or replies like “thank you” and “got it” directly to the individual, you must enter his or her address in the “to” field and delete the MHJC address.

It is possible that a phone call or meeting with a fellow congregant could be more respectful and effective than a list-wide posting. Not all problems must be laundered and dried in front of our entire neighborhood.

Our members are often interested in others’ queries, and appreciate reading answers to many questions. If you are soliciting multiple responses, such as in a list of plumbers, as a courtesy you should ask for individual replies. If appropriate, you could send a summary for the community.

IV. Use clear subject lines

To respect the time and attention of your fellow congregants avoid generic subject lines such as Help, Now Available or Need Info. The more specific your subject line, the more people will read and respond to your posting (examples: “Oneg swap needed for mm/dd/yyyy” — “Indoor plumber needed ASAP” — “Awesome Israel article link from today’s paper” — “Job Posting: Executive Administrator”). When you respond to a posting, check that the subject line still reflects the topic at hand; if needed, enter a new subject, accurately reflecting the changed topic.

V. Sign every posting

Subscribers whose email header information is stripped away by their local email system won’t know who sent it unless the sender’s full name is included in the message text itself (this also helps decipher those clever email addresses that are unfamiliar to people outside your immediate friendship circle). Longer e-signatures containing contact information and affiliation are encouraged.

VI. Create context

Postings should begin with a concise introduction (topic sentence) or a clear reference to a specific previous posting. Often the listserv hosts long and overlapping “threads” of discussion; unreferenced postings are confusing. On the other hand, please do not simply add your remarks atop a long stream of previous posts. One effective way to provide context is to offer a short and relevant quote from the original message.

Avoid or explain any jargon, abbreviations, or colloquial language that may be unknown to our wide audience. The same goes for Hebrew and Yiddish terms, familiar to some yet not all of us.

VII. Do not litter

As the communication world overflows with emails, help us all to reduce unnecessary messages.

  • Search the listserv archives to find resources that have been previously discussed on the list (going back to its origins). It is disrespectful to use our community as a substitute for easy to find research.
  • Never include or forward attachments with your listserv messages—the archives can’t store them; the index can’t find them.
  • Don’t send long documents directly to the list. Describe the document and give instructions for retrieving it, or offer to send it to those interested via a link/url. Provide a link/url for copyrighted materials as well.
  • Don’t post a personal request on the listserv (“What time is the program on Sunday?”) that could be resolved by calling or emailing an informed person, checking our website or searching back through your emails.
  • Please don’t congest the listserv by routinely forwarding jokes, product recalls, recipes or “do this and you will win” emails that circulate on the internet.
  • Do not forward unsubstantiated virus warnings, urban legends, or warnings about medical, personal or idiosyncratic issues unless you check with sites such as Snopes, or are completely confident of their authenticity.
  • If you send a message to the list by mistake, you do not need to send an apology to the whole list unless the message might be offensive or personal.

VIII. Forward correctly, with care

Forwarding out: Messages posted on the MHJC listserv are private communications among the MHJC members. Do not forward to others outside our community without explicit permission of the author (except for announcements of public events only).

Forwarding in: When forwarding outside announcements of events of interest to our community, please cut out extraneous lines, yet leave enough information to clarify the original source.

IX. Be nice

Respectful debate and discussion is always welcome on the listserv. If you disagree with another’s posting, you have the right to voice your objections. The key is civility. If you would not be comfortable saying it openly for all to hear at Shabbat Kiddush or oneg after a Shabbat service, then don’t share it via the listserv. Before sending your message make sure it is complete and says what you intend, honoring the rules of lashon hara (see the first commandment).

If the message is extra “hot” or edgy, waiting an hour (or a night’s sleep) to post or respond may be advisable.

X. Contact our moderator

Our listserv is a moderated and all messages will be approved by a volunteer moderator before they are posted. If your message is not approved for posting to the listserv, it will either be returned or forwarded to an appropriate committee chair or officer for follow-up.