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e-mail capabilities (1)

Posted: 05/17/2003 11:58:00 AM

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I know the beta is well along, but my recent frustrations with e-mailing site members has prompted a bunch of new thoughts about our needs.

We send an occasional newsletter to people who register for our vBulletin forums and select to receive the newsletter. We send out the newsletter via the vBulletin admin controls, which has a simple function for emailing users.

I know there are a better ways, but this is within our skills and is easier for us and our members. We don't need, for example, to maintain a separate database for newsletter subscriptions (or try to synchronize with the vBulletin database) and members don't need to subscribe separately from their registration for the forums. This IS less than ideal, though, as we're using a vBulletin function in a way not really intended.

Some things I would like:

1) To allow people other than those with administrator rights to access only a module designed specifically for emailing members, so that our newsletter editors could send off the newsletter themselves.

2) To have the site registration provide specifically for subscription to the newsletter, apart from an option to receive e-mail from site admins. vBulletin includes only the later. Since we did not wish to give members an options for opting out of critical e-mails from the site administrators (as explained in our terms of service and privacy policy), we changed the option to receive e-mails from the admins to an option to receive the newsletter. This works OK, except that vBulletin does not give the admins an option to e-mail all members or even to gather all the e-mail addresses of members.
It can only be done by retrieving e-mail addresses directly from the MySQL database.

3) To have something other than a tiny form box in which to paste the newsletter.

Just some thoughts.