Mail-Merge= Yes | No

This keyword is not available in LISTSERV Lite.

Mail merge functions are documented fully in the Advanced Topics Guide for LISTSERV, available separately.

Mail-Merge= Yes makes every posting to the list a mail-merge operation (see the Advanced Topics Guide to LISTSERV for more information about formatting mail merge jobs). Digests and indexes also become mail-merge jobs. Header modifications are done in the same way as with a normal list, you confirm with OK as usual, etc. The text will then follow the same rules as when entered in a mail-merge job using the web interface--ASSUMING that your mail program did not do anything fancy to the text, such as replace all ampersands with =xx or rewrite everything in rich-text format. It is fundamentally difficult and unreliable to use a mail program as the client for mail-merge since mail programs are engineered to encode information in fancy and unpredictable ways that were not used in the previous version, whereas mail servers are engineered to only look at the information they positively need to look at to get the job done, so that they do not inadvertently get in the way of new, fancier encoding methods. Therefore it is important when using a mail program to send mail-merge jobs that you ensure that the mail program sends plain text rather than any kind of encoded text.

This keyword should be used only on lists that are set up as announce-only mailing lists (that is to say, posting should be restricted to the list owner(s) only for security purposes). Because this keyword alone does not restrict the ability to post, the list owner(s) should ensure that the "Send=" keyword is set appropriately. Note that if you do not restrict the ability to post, anyone who is otherwise permitted to post to the list will also be able to send mail-merge jobs to it.

This method can be used to attach files unconditionally. It cannot be used to send file 1 to some people and file 2 to others because the mail program knows nothing about mail-merge and, as such, does not mark them as conditional blocks. Any markings you provide are part of the text attachment you are working in.

The default is to send mail normally, in other words, Mail-Merge= No . As noted above, if your LISTSERV installation is not configured properly for mail-merge operations, you should never change this setting from the default.