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Cornell Lab of Ornithology


Discussion list

This page offers details about the discussion list, which allows subscribers to connect directly with colleagues in the field.


Thank you for your interest in the CitSci-Discussion-L listserv! Its purpose is to facilitate the sharing of information of interest to individuals who are working in the field of public participation in scientific research.


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listserv help guidelines


Using the listserv:

Simply send messages to - be aware that anything sent to this address will be seen by all members, so target your posts accordingly.


To safeguard this community, the first post from each new member will be moderated by list administrators.

Please read our guidelines for posting before using the listserv.


Managing list options:
List options (daily digest, stop mail, etc.) can easily be set and changed with email commands. In most browsers, the following links should automatically open a formatted message to send as-is. A properly formatted message should:

  1. Be sent FROM the email address at which you are subscribed (you may need to edit, as our system can't know this)
  2. Be sent TO the following address (NOT the main list address)
  3. Have no text in the body of the message
  4. Have a subject line with no punctuation, no formatting, (used here just for emphasis) reading: set command
A visual example of what an appropriately formatted message looks like can be found here.

Command options
  • Daily Digest - one message per day will full content of all posts (Command: set digest).
  • Vacation - stop receiving messages without unsubscribing (Command: set nomail).
  • Resume all mail - the default setting when you subscribe, good to use if you are back from vacation or want to change back from the digest to again receive each message as it is posted (Command: set mail).

Additional commands and more general information about using Cornell University e-lists can be found here.

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Getting help:

***We have heard that some systems have a firewall excluding the use of the subscription form. If you are experiencing difficulties subscribing through the web form, try the following:

Send an email, from the account at which you wish to receive elist messages, to, and in the subject line type: join. (Do not type the period after the word join.) The body of the message should be blank. If you do not receive a confirmation message within 24 hours, please contact us for additional options.

If you run into additional problems, or have any questions regarding the listserv, please direct your questions to us.


Should you require additional assistance, or if we do not respond within two business days, please contact Cornell’s e-List Administration Team.

Please be sure to include:

  • the name of the e-list in question
  • a full description of what the problem is
  • any error/notification message you may have received


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Guidelines for Posting

  • Be relevant! Remember that the Listserv is meant to address community issues, and make sure your posts are relevant to the community as a whole. Our list is primarily for citizen science practitioners – SciStarter and the Citizen Scientists League have excellent resources for volunteers.
  • Have news? Great! The Listserv is perfect for announcing conferences, trainings, and new programs.
  • That being said, don’t try to sell us stuff. And please carefully consider the relevance and value to the community before announcing fee-based services.
  • We want to get to know each other, but for your safety please keep all personal information private.
  • And we know we probably don’t need to say this, but be nice! Harassing, obscene, or threatening language has no place in our discussions.
  • Remember to be clear – your discussion subject should be obvious, and your message concise and pointed.
  • Does it need to be read by everyone? If not, send it only to those few lucky, relevant individuals.
  • “Sally McSmitherson is on vacation for the next 7 months and will not respond to your email.” Nice for her, frustrating for us. If you’re going to be away for an extended period of time, please remove yourself from the mailing list instead. We will happily welcome you back upon your return!
  • Make sure to get permission before sharing any copyrighted material or personal communications. This includes more than one paragraph of online news articles.
  • If your post generates extensive discussion (hooray!), we may ask for your permission to elevate the conversation to an associated discussion forum, where we can continue without overwhelming the Listserv.

While we trust our members to self-enforce, if necessary unacceptable Listserv postings will be handled as follows:

  • The first time a member posts an unacceptable message, s/he will be given a warning by email. If the member continues to post inappropriate message, his/her subscription will be terminated.

Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed on the Listserv are those of the contributing author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cornell University or the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.


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