[unisog] off topic: mass emailing

Valdis.Kletnieks at vt.edu Valdis.Kletnieks at vt.edu
Sun Sep 19 18:17:12 GMT 2010

On Fri, 17 Sep 2010 13:06:24 CDT, Rick Hayter said:

> We've done that too, but it always seems someone wants a different
> subset. I think by formalizing our procedure, and giving some
> ownership of data to departments we might be able to keep our heads
> above water.

Ownership of data is a curious thing.  One might *think* that a list of all
chemistry majors would be data that might belong to the chemistry department,
but it's derivative data extracted from something that belongs to the
Registrar.  Quite often, what you'll end up doing is acknowledging that the
data belongs to one steward, but some other department is allowed to get timely
extracts when needed.

At which point you'll have to fight turf wars about who gets to create new
queries and how much data they can see.  For instance, if the Chem dept was
allowed a view "email for all Chem majors", how do they mail to all sophomore
chem majors? Do you allow them to see the year code for the student?  Or do you
create 5 canned queries for freshman, soph, junior, senior, grad student, and
make the dept glue them together to send to all majors?

And your Security Officer will probably get involved in order to check who can
do what queries, and how the queries are secured.  Bonus points if the person
in the department who can authorize mailings isn't the same person who can
do the queries.

Good luck.  It helps if you have the ear of somebody high enough up the org
chart to say "This is a legitimate business need, so *solve* it" and make it
stick.  Without that sort of mandate, it will be hard going.

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