Reflectors vs. Mailing Lists vs. Forwarders

There are three types of email delivery functions in Causeway: Reflectors, Mailing Lists, and Forwarders. These terms are frequently used interchangeably, although they function differently. This section attempts to explain the differences of each and provide examples of when each are best used in varying situations. 

Reflectors (aka Workgroup Reflectors, Listservs, Distribution lists...)

Reflectors are the group distribution lists associated with committees and work groups. In Causeway, each group/committee is automatically given an email reflector that all group members are subscribed to. The email reflector is used for group discussion, and by Causeway to distribute system generated messages (such as new content being posted in your group area). Email going to a group reflector is archived in the Discussions section of your workgroup. Depending on your personal email delivery settings, all group email will be delivered to your inbox.

Mailing Lists

In Causeway, there exists a feature we commonly call 'stand alone mailing lists'. Site Administrators can set these up within the Admin Panel. Mailing Lists are similar in functionality to a group reflector, however they are not tied with a group collaboration space (document repository, calendar etc). Stand alone mailing lists are most commonly used by organizations looking to distribute information to users (one-way communication) such as newsletters or event announcements. These types of mailing lists can be opened for Causeway users to self-subscribe. Archives of email from mailing lists are available to Site Administrators.


Forwarders are a type of email delivery system that can be set up through the Admin Panel. Forwarders only exist as a way for you to create an email address using the domain of your Causeway site, that forwards to another email address. For example, you can set up a Forwarder such as, that forwards designated individuals on your press team. Or, you can use Forwarders to give yourself an email address with your organization's domain (for example that forwards to your personal address. Email going through a forwarder is not archived in Causeway.