Purpose of these guidelines:

  • To provide consistent, useful and relevant information to our students, faculty and staff.
  • To enhance the usability of our information for all users.
  • To promote user satisfaction with our list content and prevent ignoring list content due to overuse.

Images and size:

  • Total message size should be as small as possible (1MB or less is ideal).
  • Information that cannot fit into a reasonably small size should be posted on a website and linked into the message.
  • Images should be less than 1200 pixels wide (not hi-res) and smaller than 1MB.
  • Use JPEG format for photos
  • PNG format for infographics
  • If in doubt save the file in each format and use the smaller one
  • Consider replacing images consisting entirely of formatted text with the text itself

Links to content:

  • Links to external content should NEVER contain the phrase “Click Here”
  • Alternatives to “Click Here”:
    • Tell the user what action they will be performing
      • RSVP at orgsync
      • Register for event
      • Take our survey
    • Tell the user what information they will be seeing
    • Bare URL if it is self-evident
  • Avoid linking to login pages. When necessary use bare URLs and steps to complete action.
  • Login at my.wsu.edu and select Main Menu -> General Links -> Tech Store
  • Never misrepresent link locations. Don’t link to one URL with text that looks like another URL.
  • This includes using click-tracking links. If you need to click track use descriptive text rather than text that looks like a URL.
  • CHECK YOUR LINKS!!! It’s hard or impossible to correct for mistakes in links once they are sent out.

Headers and metadata:

  • The list address should be in the To or CC of the message.
  • Avoid including additional addresses in the To and CC.
  • This causes people to want to use reply-all which is usually inappropriate.
  • Additional mailing lists in To and CC are OK.
  • Use an appropriate subject line.
  • Try to get a summary of your message in less than 80 characters.
  • DO NOT USE ALL CAPS.

Content:

  • Events should also be posted to the WSUTC Event calendar at tricities.wsu.edu/calendar/events
  • It would also be a good idea to put a link to the event in your message.
  • Do not send out multiple reminders about your event. If you are getting a poor turn-out try other mediums.
  • You should update the list with corrections and changes to the event but please try and keep updates to a minimum.
  • Don’t include calendar items (appointments or meeting requests) in list messages.
  • There are multiple issues with the way email clients display and respond to these messages that can cause problems when interacting with the mailing list.
  • Messages should be appropriate to the list to which they are sent.
  • Don’t send information that would only be of interest to faculty/staff to the student list or vice versa.
  • Don’t send information that would only be of interest to a very small known subset of the users of the list.
  • The lists are a state resource and are to be used for official WSU Tri-Cities business. Personal content, promoting political activity, businesses or non-approved charities (no matter how well intended) is not acceptable.