Listserv i.e. ability to submit forum posts by email
Discussions and collaborations between members can currently only be handled online (within forum or blog pages)
Listserv functionality where members can mail-in comments and receive email summaries of all comments
1) The biggest challenge is how to enable this without overloading our servers with email traffic. This can ramp up quickly.
2) We are starting the work on forum email notifications, this handles this need at least partially.
Please review results of our analysis and design:
Post your comments/ideas right here. Until we see major disapproval, this is what we will develop in one of future releases.
Sorry, no - it hasn't been scheduled for a particular release yet.
Do you have any updated information on when this feature might be available?
I agree 100% with the opinions expressed in this post! I have these very same issues with all three groups I have in WA.
I completely agree that a listserv is critical. We currently have to use Yahoo Groups which requires our members to have yet another login but the service has been repeatedly voted as one of the most important features of membership to our members. The seperate login causes us more trouble than we or our members would care for. We send maybe 10 emails a day through it so I highly doubt the load would be that great (we have trained them over the years through moderating to take conversations outside of direct questions and answers offline).
Add our vote for this one
worthing and adur chamber ofcommerce
Thanks for the comment. My earlier comment about email volume concerns is no longer relevant as we are now processing huge volumes of emails anyway and have put the infrastructure in place to scale this. Now it is simply a question of prioritizing against other features. I estimate that the earliest we could roll this out is fall of 2012 - though this is not guaranteed.
Eric Dahl commented
I'm casting another vote for providing members the ability to communicate with groups of other members via email, rather than requiring them to log into the website, find the discussion forum of their choice, and post a message. I have been using Wild Apricot for a almost two years, and I love it, except for this one missing feature.
I manage two organizations that have a number of affinity groups that are accustomed to discussing issues via email, and I am about to start a third. I am seriously considering other platforms because of this lack. I don't want to use a separate email discussion group system, like Google Groups, Grouply, or GroupSpaces, because that requires users to use two sets of log-in credentials. I don't consider the Wild Apricot forums a satisfactory solution because I am certain that there would be a very low adoption rate if I tried to moving our discussions to online forums. People just won't take the trouble to do it. This forces me to choose between Wild Apricot and a competitive platform. If Wild Apricot rolled out this feature, it would be a total winner, hands-down. As it is, I am leaning towards starting up the third organization on another platform.
In one of your messages, you said the reason for not implementing this feature is a concern over the burden it would place on your email servers. That seems like a pretty thin excuse; other platforms manage to do it at competitive pricing. But you could charge a little more money for this "extra" feature if you have to. I would be more than happy to pay for it.
Is there any hope that you will implement this feature soon? I need to make a decision.
Evgeny Zaritovskiy commented
Thanks for your input, Alan. We have related thread about listsevr - http://forums.wildapricot.com/forums/308932-wishlist/suggestions/8825587-ability-to-submit-forum-posts-by-email-to-use-fo - we will include your scenario in the design. No timeline though, sorry.
Alan Fields commented
We use the groups feature to track our committee members and limit access to certain "committee members only" pages. While the administrator can use that to generate a bulk email, the committee chair/secretary doesn't have that access.
As a result the committee chair frequently maintains an outlook group of his members, adds and changes members there and doesn't report those changes to the association. Or the member updates his information with the association and the new email isn't pushed out to the committee.
Consider whether the group members could flow into a multiple person mailto command in the committee webpage: "mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org,email@example.com..." That way the chair or any other member could generate an email to the entire committee without the need to track his committee membership.
Other thoughts would be appreciated.
Evgeny Zaritovskiy commented
This is still in our queue and unlikely to be done in 2011.
I also really need the same things others have been discussing;
- Ability to set default subscriptions to Email's when member is created (and then have them opt out, rather have to Opt in)
- Ability for members to send emails that are converted to Topics/Replies
To avoid spam, could you just have WA cross check the FROM email address matches a WA member email address, and have a limit to the number of posts that can be created per week/month by this method, per the Member ID (and hence per the FROM email address).
Please implement this.Other one I really would like is the Ability to Link Emails and Forum/Topics;
a) A Macro for Email content to be taken from 'Last Forum/Topic post by a certain member'.
ie. When doing an email blast, use previously saved email, and that email has in it a Macro/Other tag, that picks up the content from the most recent post for a nominated
- Member ID (eg. an Admin)
in this way each time we send a weekly E-Mail, we dont have to manually cut and paste the content into multiple places.
b) On the Sent Emails screen, add a button to 'Convert to Forum Topic'... that simply creates a Forum (selected) Topic from the selected sent email.
The end result is that members who have chosen not to subscribe to emails but still want to log onto the site to see the content can do so, without me having to manully create the content in multiple places (Email and Forum Topic).
This is the one major flaw that I have encountered in Wild Apricot. Our members are not likely to go to a site to post messages to go to the rest of the membership. We currently use a Google Group for that purpose, and as noted by numerous other posters, maintaining parallel mailing lists is a considerable burden. We are a professional organization, and for us the site is intended to streamline communications. It is unlikely to ever become a "go to" site that people log onto unless they are trying to accomplish something specific (e.g., look up another member, renew their membership). So I hope you either add a listserv type function or make it so that administrators can set forum subscription options for members.
Zoe Brookes commented
I need this too. I am struggling to get group members to go and subscribe so they see what's being discussed. If I could go in as an administrator and subscribe members of a group to particular forums that would get rid of this problem. They could choose to unsubscribe if they wanted.
Allan Leonard commented
One year later, no progress on this request :-(
In addition to Yahoo Groups and Google Groups, Posterous.com has now introduced an email-based discussion group feature, Posterous Groups. Administrators can control who is a Subscriber or a Contributor to the group. No RSS feed as in Grouply's offering though.
Regrettably, I'll be closing down one of my Wild Apricot sites (http://ourfuturetogether.net) because Posterous provides a much easier means of facilitating group discussion. I mean, I don't know anyone anymore who goes to a website to log in to post comments (besides us site administrators here) -- email and Facebook are all pervasive!
I have to echo allanleonard on this. We just transferred to Wild Apricot from Yahoo group to make membership management better but people are not using the forum nearly as much as they were using the yahoo group because it's just more cumbersome that way rather than using email. I have received numerous complaints about it and have been force to create a distribution list that I now have to regularly update every time there is a change in the membership. This email activity is an essential component of our activities, generates a lot of disucssion and events etc...it is very important.
I am in full support of the development of this functionality and urgently needing it.
Also, it would be highly desirable to give the administrator the ability to automatically sign up all members for forum subscription. Even though I have repeatedly told the members they needed to register and gave them instructions on how to do it, many of them have not done it and so they are not receiving any email notifications from the forum. This is a huge inconvenience.
This would be good functionality in my opinion. Not currently a customer but am looking seriously at it and this is a major issue for me. I understand the logic of pushing people to the site for forums, but for the 20 plus professional associations I help manage they frankly don't have time to log into the site every time they want to post a message. They are too busy ! I used a bug tracking software product (it was "Beautifully Simple Issue Tracking") that had the functionality of subject line becoming the title etc. Was really ultra convenient.
Allan Leonard commented
Still patiently awaiting progress on this, and becoming more urgent by the month. There is a company, Grouply http://www.grouply.com , that has identified this gap between social networks and group discussions, and is trying to bridge it with its product. Significant attraction is retaining existing Yahoo Groups discussion boards and members (essentially Grouply pulls discussion messages as a feed into Grouply website you create).
So, some WA options could be:
1. Allow WA site administrators control over for WA members "subscribe get forum post by email" option (only significant feature WA administrators don't have control over; administrators of Yahoo and Google Groups have such control)
2. Develop post to discussion forum by email (like existing Yahoo Groups and Google Groups feature)
3. Develop a feed reader akin to that provided by Grouply, whereby a Yahoo/Google Group owner/administrator gives WA permission to re-publish discussion posts within WA site. (This would mean that discussion posts would be made via Yahoo/Google Group email service.)
I really need a workable solution, as some of my group/WA site members are ever only going to interact by email. Please.
See http://forums.wildapricot.com/forums/308932-wishlist/suggestions/8825587-ability-to-submit-forum-posts-by-email-to-use-fo for our most current thinking on this.
The biggest reason we are considering this is to provide functionality similar to listserv, see
We are not keen to implement listserv per se, because it has huge potential for abuse by spammers and we think this feature can actually solve 90% of the problem - since we already have a way for people to subscribe get forum posts by email.
To submit a forum post, a member has to go onto the forum and make the posting there.
On a forum by forum basis, admin can enable a function that creates an email address that members can send their posts to. It would use their email address to access their profile information and use that to identify the poster. The subject of the e-mail becomes the title and the body of the email is the body of the post.
If the email was not the same as the one associated with a member, the post would not be processed.