The mailing list


Topic: News from the AEGEE network;
Subscription: Open. Membership in aegee-l implies subscription to announce-l;
Postings by: list members only.
Size Limit: 100kb per mail

Historical Background

When the general AEGEE mailing lists were created, aegee-announce-l was among them. It was ment for all kind of announcements, incl. recently elected boards, but no discussions. Since information about future events was posted there, the list was renamed in February 1998 to aegee-event-l. So it transformed into list for events promotion. Simultaneously, the activities of working groups and projects were distributed over aegee-l.

In the meantime rich formatted mails were permitted to aegee-l. This flexibily was misused, when very coloured mails started circulating over the list. The many colours circumvented the discussions, and were disabled.

In September 2005 aegee-europe-announce-l was created, with similar ideas, as you can see from its welcome-mail:

This mailing list is meant to inform you about the latest happenings in AEGEE. Please, take note that you cannot post to this list, also discussions on certain topics should rather be done on AEGEE-L, the main discussion forum of our association.

Through this list, we are going to send you pure information like:

- Newsletters
- Open calls for positions in AEGEE bodies and projects
- Information about big projects of AEGEE
- Announcements of mayor events (e.g. Statutory meetings)
- Information about training courses (external as well as internal)

Today, there is lack for a mailing list, that spreads just information about the activity of the global players in AEGEE, and nothing more. Here is it: announce-l. Used with wisdom, it can be made attractive for subscriptions.

The Idea is intended to inform about the global happanings in AEGEE. This mailing list is ment for people, who want to stay informed about what is going in AEGEE, but do not want to receive all the mails suitable for aegee-l. Its goal is to have all AEGEE members on it, so it shall stay attractive for all. The list traffic shall be kept low. Deciding factor if a mail is intended for announce-l is its content, not the design. Discussion are not desired, comments on sent over announce-l mails, go to aegee-l. Attachments are not allowed. All mails are optimized for readability even for disabled persons, and must include at least a text-only part.


The mailing list is not used to send open calls, reminders or event announcements.

Language issues

Messages sent to this list can be written in any language, although in general you will find the vast majority of postings are issued in English. If you prefer writing in another language, please think about your target group's language capabilities. The same information could be provided in different languages within the same mail. See below how to format your message, if it contains non-trivial characters.

What is Good Design

To be written.

How to Prepare the Mail

The most significant part of a mail is its contents. Try to avoid phrases without added value and all kinds of clichés. Put subjects that best describe to content of the mail.

Next comes the form. Put in the beginning of your message one line per mentioned topic, as a kind of contents. Delimit the following paragraphs by an empty line. Separate visually the topics in the mail, e.g. by two empty lines.

The mails can contain a html part, allowing good design and improving the visual acceptance. Upload in internet all the pictures and documents that need to be referenced from your mail. Choose your favourite web designer to make your mails beautiful. The result at this stage shall be a webpage, that can be viewed in a browser. Opening the same one .html file from different computers ensures that no pictures are referenced on your computer. Otherwise people who do not read the emails using your harddisk will not be able to see the images. A proof that the mail will look in the same way using different software is, if it looks in the same manner using even different browsers.


Decide who shall get by default the answers to the distributed mails. If the mail shall go back to the same address, that sends it, skip the rest of the paragraph. Under some circumstances you might want, that people do not reply to your address, but directly to the whole team. In such cases specify the desired destination for answers in the Reply-To field of your mail client. Please include here the name of the recipient near the e-mail address, e.g. if replies shall go to Ivan Vasov, having e-mail, write in the reply-to "Ivan Vasov" <>.

Non ASCII-Characters

Apart from the A-Z, 0-9 characters you might want to include some non-ASCII symbols, like Б or Д The problem is, that the characters might be displayed incorrectly, if not enough information is included in your mail. For special Characters in plain text, write your mail keeping the same charset over the whole mail. Then include the charset in the content-type mail header/mime part, like: Content-Type: text/plain; charset=utf-8. UTF-8 is always good character set, since it can represent any character. Many mail clients will however ignore the specified charset and will show your mail with the system's default one. There is nothing more that can be done to solve this issue.

If it comes to special characters in the HTML part the same problem arizes, but it can be solved. When displayng characters in HTML, the charset can be sent to the webbrowser by HTTP headers, or in case of e-mail, the charset is included in the Content-Type of the MIME part. The charset can also be specified in the <meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=utf-8; > html tag. Regardless how you announce it, most browser-based mail clients will ignore the information. HTML allows an alternative way to represent charachters, using the &#xxxx; character entities. Transform all non-ASCII characters for the HTML part.

Practical issues

With all this into mind, prepare the mail. I was not able to find a mail client, that allows independant design for the html and plain text part, here is an incomplete list of solutions which are flexible enough for all kind of html mails. Suggestions for amendments are welcome.

Send the mail to all your accounts and check if it always looks fine. Corrections to already sent mails are not good, so do your best with the initial mail. If everythings is fine, send it to .

Preparing and sending great e-mails is science by itself. The non-AEGEE Public Relations Working Group and the non-AEGEE Information Technology Working Group are at your disposal, whenever you need advice.

Written in March 2007 by Дилян Палаузов

Todo: check if the base64 trick is still of advantage (Marino asked)
include more ways to compose html mails that allow a bit different content in the plain and html part.
find some guidelines of what good design is (Virag asked)
include in
provide online tool (webpage) for convenient conversion of character entities (ask Mitko for his and tweak it to leave untouched < and >)
provide online tool for convenient sending of formatted emails: webpage with the fields:
- from
- to
- reply-to
- subject
- text-part
- html-part
that sends the mails, upon authentication with account. From all fields, only the html-part and reply-to may be left empty. Ideally provide a way to specify the charset for the text part, or recognize it based on the sent web-page, do iconv on it to utf-8; incorporate the character entities tool here and sent the mail composed in this way.

Written in April 2007 by Дилян Палаузов