Campus Mailing Lists, Subscribe to or unsubscribe from a mail list

How do I subscribe or unsubscribe from a mailing list?

There are two interfaces to subscribe or unsubscribe from a mail list. These include the web interface or via email. 

Use The Web Interface:
To unsubscribe from a list:
  1. Log into
  2. You will see the lists that you are subscribed to in a menu on the left side of your screen.
  3. Click the button that says "Manage Your Subscriptions" at the top of this menu.
  4. Select the check box next to the list that you want to unsubscribe from.  Deselect the boxes next to those that you want to remain subscribed to.
  5. Click "Unsubscribe" at the bottom of the page. This will unsubscribe you from the selected lists.
To subscribe to a list:
  1. Log into
  2. If you know the name of the list that you want to subscribe to, type it in the search box and click "Search lists". Alternatively, you can browse by category for a list that you are looking for
  3. Click the list name of the list you wish to subscribe to.
  4. In the menu on the left, click "Subscribe". This will subscribe you to the list.

Note:  There are times when a subscriber needs to be suspended or removed from a list.  Here are a few options to address this situation:

Suspend subscriber from receiving email from list?  

  1. [Manage Subscribers] > (Exclude) button.  These mail list members will be excluded from all posts to the list.
  2. [Manage Subscribers] > (Delete selected email addresses) button.  Just delete the email address from the subscribers list.   To prevent unwanted subscribers, the list owner(s) can define ‘who can subscribe to the list’.   This setting is under:  (Admin) > [Edit List Config] > Privileges > ‘who can subscribe to the list’

Suspend subscriber from sending to list?    Each mail list has a:

  • [Blocklist] – block all inbound from the email addresses in this setting.  Use case:  An open list in which a subscriber who posts irrelevant messages but they still are valid consumers of list information.
  • [Modlist] – send all email from these senders to the moderator; if no moderator then list owner.  Use case:  subscriber who tends to rant, get off topic, etc..
  • [Safelist] – send all email to mail list subscribers and by pass moderation if configured.   Use case:  Prof send email to students

Use The email Interface
Send an email..... to the server.  

To subscribe send an email to with the following "Subject:"  The server will use the email address you used to send the request as the subscriber email address.  If it's a private list then a subscribe request will be sent to the Owner and if the list is open to the public then the server will add your email to the list.  
Option 1:    Subject:   subscribe LISTNAME

If you want to associate your name and title with the email address then you can also include it in the subject:

Option 2:   Subject:  subscribe LISTNAME  Mr.Some Body 

NOTE:  leave the message body blank with the command in the subject.  If you want to submit multiple commands then leave the subject blank and list each command in the body one command per line.

To unsubscribe send an email to with the following message:
signoff  LISTNAME 
In this case the email address that sent the request will be removed from the list.   (replace LISTNAME with the actual name of the list and with the email address you used to subscribe to the list)

Email syntax:  Violating these simple syntax rules will result in a rejection by the server. 
*  Single email commands are sent in the subject field with a "blank" body
*  Multiple email commands are sent one per line in the body with a "blank" subject.

Here are some examples:

Email command Examples

Single command example


subject:  subscribe listName

Multiple Command Example




Subscribe listName user@email.address

INVITE listname

INVITE listname

Note 2:  If you have an automatic signature this will cause the server to reject the command(s) because it tries to execute the data in signature.

Keywords:List, subscribe, unsubscribe, add, remove, sympa, listserv   Doc ID:48138
Owner:Sympa S.Group:University of Illinois Technology Services
Created:2015-03-03 15:19 CSTUpdated:2021-04-12 07:42 CST
Sites:University of Illinois Technology Services
Feedback:  2   13