Email Series Disrupts UMW Student and Faculty Emails

On January 16 a mass email series was sent out to students at the University of Mary Washington. From these hundreds of emails some contained vulgar, inappropriate, and condescending remarks made towards members of the UMW community.

Jerry Slezak, the Director of IT Support Services explained the series email was able to put in the system

“There have been some settings about the distributions list,” said Slezak. “Somehow and we’re still investigating how it happened, the ability to respond to each of was enabled. It’s not supposed to function, it hasn’t been and something has switched in the settings somewhere. We’re still looking into it”

The IT Support Services have been in the process of ascertaining the way the chain happened and what needs to be done in order to prevent it from occurring again in the long run. The University addressed the email chain within an email which was sent out on January, 17.

As stated in the email, “UMW policy restricts the use of UMW email distribution lists” As a result of configuration error the emails became accessible, along with the restriction was nulled. The email explained what happened and the series was a breach on UMW policy.

“A list was used to disseminate spam and other inappropriate messages into some UMW students. This action is a Possible breach of the UMW’s Network and Computer Use Policy and the student Code of Conduct,” said the email.

Since the email inicident, the UMW students have had rather a good deal to say about the email series. Students had various viewpoints on the mass email

“They have been both annoying, pointless, and childish,” said sophomore studio art and elementary education major Mckinzie Turner.

Jewel Washington, who is a sophomore psychology major, also Grayson D’Alessandro who is a sociology major also shared some of the same views as Turner.

“It was childish, annoying, and maybe not a fantastic representation of this school as a whole,” said Washington

“It was definitely super frustrating to see people take advantage of the email system,” said D’Alessandro. D’Alessandro thoughts were focused on the abuse the system endured during the email series.

Students had mixed opinions over if, and how, they believed students should be punished for abusing the email system.

“Nothing super serious like getting kicked out, but probably something such as a seminar about how to not misuse technology,” said Turner.

“Yes, but I believe there should be a level of understanding exactly what is misuse, and what is just being silly,” said D’Alessandro. “Whatever punishment there should be should be just like a “horizontal line” it should be taken case by case.”

The Hall Cheshire has stated that due to legality and privacy issues of their students they’re unable to give any details about any possible punishments for the students that abused the email system.


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