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Information Technology Services

IT Help Desk
Kansas State University
K-State Student Union
Cat's Pause Lounge
Room 222
Manhattan KS 66506


Distribution lists vs. LISTSERV mailing lists

Distribution lists and LISTSERV mailing lists are the most common ways for mass email communication at K-State. They both allow for the distribution of messages among a group, however, there are some distinct differences that can help you determine which type of list best meets your needs. In summary, a distribution list is best used for simple, small group communication. It is a no frills email list. The maximum number of email addresses in a distribution list is 200. If you need more than 200 email addresses, use a LISTSERV. LISTSERV mailing lists let you configure the list to your needs and can be used for any size group.

FeatureDistribution listLISTSERV mailing list
Can include K-State and
non-K-State members
Designated list owner(s)YesYes
Manage list with eIDYesYes, with your K-State email address and eID password
Open subscription optionNo, owner must add membersYes
Archiving optionsNoYes, messages can be stored and searched
Listed in K-State White PagesNoNo
Searchable in Office 365 GALYes, but IT Help Desk must turn it onYes, but IT Help desk must turn it on