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View Full Version : Need help setting up emails for a volunteer organization



ljcblue
06-05-2008, 07:35 AM
I apologize for putting this in its own thread, but I was concerned that it had gotten buried in the old thread I had originally posted it in.

I run the website for a volunteer organization with people who are barely comfortable checking their email. I need a *simple* way to offer email accounts to about 6 people.

1--The emails need to have a common domain.
2--The people need to be able to access these emails from their own personal email addresses.
3--The people in these volunteer positions change and I need to be able to easily move the email redirection to whoever is taking over the position

I understand from reading through other threads on the topic that forwarding without setting up an actual email will work, albeit in a clumsy manner and may be an invitation for other domains to block the BH domain wholesale.

Two questions:

1--If I set up an actual BH email address for each person and *then* use forwarding, is this still a problem? (The volunteers do not want another email to check and I can't be sure they all use outlook or thunderbird, etc to fetch mail.)

I would periodically check the contents of these emails to clean them out, etc.

2--Can I set up forwarding to the volunteer's home email AND also have all 6 email addresses aggregate to say one gmail account that I could monitor? (so, in essence, 2 different redirects per email)

Thank you!

LJCohen

calculoso
06-05-2008, 11:12 AM
1) Depends on who you ask. If your spam filtering is good enough (a constant battle) then I don't think it should be a big deal. Felgall may have a different opinion (as we seem to be polar opposites on this :) )

2) You can set up forwarding to 2 or more addresses. I have one set up to forward to 4 different people, as an example.

felgall
06-05-2008, 12:01 PM
The simplest solution is to set up the email accounts you need on your hosting and then send instructions to the people concerned so that they can add those email accounts into whichever email program they already use.

Any alternative to that will be a lot more complicated to set up.

You can easily have 5 or 100 email accounts all feeding into the same email program on your computer just by adding the accounts into it. Much easier than messing about with forwarding or redirecting etc plus you with an actual account you can configure spam filtering on the server so that they don't end up getting millions of spam emails mixed in with the handful that they really want.

ljcblue
06-06-2008, 06:58 AM
The simplest solution is to set up the email accounts you need on your hosting and then send instructions to the people concerned so that they can add those email accounts into whichever email program they already use.

Any alternative to that will be a lot more complicated to set up.

You can easily have 5 or 100 email accounts all feeding into the same email program on your computer just by adding the accounts into it. Much easier than messing about with forwarding or redirecting etc plus you with an actual account you can configure spam filtering on the server so that they don't end up getting millions of spam emails mixed in with the handful that they really want.

I know that is the optimal solution, but I don't have control over the volunteers and their level of sophistication vis a vis email. And given that I'm doing this on a volunteer basis as well, I don't have the time to talk each of the volunteers through this process.

Given those constraints, I am looking at what the best practice would be.

Thank you.

Lisa

Early Out
06-06-2008, 07:10 AM
I have found that anyone smart enough to operate a PC is smart enough to follow written, step-by-step instructions for adding an email account to a client program like OE.

ljcblue
06-06-2008, 07:35 AM
I have found that anyone smart enough to operate a PC is smart enough to follow written, step-by-step instructions for adding an email account to a client program like OE.

You must be working with folks far more savvy than I am. And not everyone uses the same client program. I have one volunteer who uses AOL, one who has a hotmail account, another on gmail. They don't use OE or TB. I also have some on macs, some on PCs.

I'm really trying to figure this out so I don't have to be the tech support person for a half dozen individuals all with different email/computer set ups and still give a unified look/feel to the emails to this organization. I also want to make sure I'm not contributing to a spam problem.

Is there no other working solution to this?

best,
Lisa

redsox9
06-06-2008, 09:10 AM
Well, if you do have one plus on your side, it is only six people. There might be some headaches with the initial setup, but then they should be able to get going from there after a short time. Plus, if they are using browser mail programs like gmail or AOL, then they can find answers through the help databases there.

Don't make it more complicated than it has to be.

ljcblue
06-06-2008, 09:29 AM
Well, if you do have one plus on your side, it is only six people. There might be some headaches with the initial setup, but then they should be able to get going from there after a short time. Plus, if they are using browser mail programs like gmail or AOL, then they can find answers through the help databases there.

Don't make it more complicated than it has to be.

It's only 6 people this year. If you have ever dealt with volunteer organizations, you know that there is quite a lot of turnover. I'm trying to keep this as simple as possible for me, for the volunteers. Being able to set some sort of email redirect *does* keep things simple.

That's one task for me when a volunteer changes his or her email address or resigns from the organization versus deactivating an email, and setting up a new one, teaching that person how to retrieve it, etc.

I do get the whole issue with why forwarding without setting up an actual email is bad vis a vis spam. Can I accomplish what I want by setting up 6 emails on BH, then forwarding them to the appropriate volunteers? Won't that eliminate the issue of spam, as the emails will be filtered at the BH level first?

I'm really not trying to be difficult, but I don't have time to manage the volunteers' emails.

Best,
Lisa

calculoso
06-06-2008, 10:53 AM
I do get the whole issue with why forwarding without setting up an actual email is bad vis a vis spam. Can I accomplish what I want by setting up 6 emails on BH, then forwarding them to the appropriate volunteers? Won't that eliminate the issue of spam, as the emails will be filtered at the BH level first?


This is exactly what I do, and I haven't had any problems with email being blocked. I do have to monitor the spam folder that I have set up (which can be 1000 emails per day), to make sure that legitimate emails aren't being blocked, but I think that would have to happen regardless of whether people set up their own mail clients or not.

felgall
06-06-2008, 11:26 AM
If you give them an actual email account for them to look after then helping them set it up is a once a year job.

If you set up the email accounts and then forward the content then maintaining those accounts will require 100 times as much work.