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documentation:glossary

Glossary of Key phpList Terminology

  • Campaign Message - A campaign message is a single email message event sent to the members of one or more lists. It is delivered to subscribers. Sending a campaign message is the central feature within phpList. A single campaign message, which contains the content entered by an admin, can only be sent to any subscriber once. In other words, if an admin sends the same message to multiple lists (which share the same subscribers), each subscriber in these lists would only get that message once.
  • Campaign – While the campaign message refers to the content and the message itself, the campaign refers to the overall process for creating and sending a campaign message.
  • Attributes - Serve to provide additional subscriber data. Attributes can be mandatory (or not), and can have default values (or not). Additionally, attributes are Global, meaning any administrator can access all attributes. Attributes are unlike lists, which are admin-dependent. In the previous version of phpList, attribute functionality served as a way for phpList to function not only as a mailing system, but also as a real subscriber database. Instead of having only an email address identifying each subscriber as in an ordinary mailing list, the Admin could customize attributes, adding such things as first name, last name, or an attribute listing countries in which the subscriber may reside, etc. This permitted the Administrator to use the attribute criteria to specifically target messages to a more precise subscriber. This functionality is no longer a core capability of the phpList. It is now available as a Plug-In, and it performs the same functionality as it did in the previous version.
  • Administrator – The administrator, to whom the guides are written, is the system user that manages the instance of phpList. The Admin is responsible for configuration, capturing statistics, sending the campaigns, etc. An admin possesses a login and a password allowing them to access the administrative functions of phpList (a.k.a. the backend), as opposed to the open and public pages of phpList (a.k.a. the frontend). Admins own all lists. They can own several lists, but each list is owned by only one administrator. An admin is not necessarily nominative: several people can share the same admin account. This is important because since each list can only be owned by one admin, sometimes it is necessary for several people to share an admin account to be able to manage the same list(s) of users. Not all admins have equal rights. Some can use all the functions in phplist, while some can only use a few functions. These rights are called permissions, and they are set by SuperAdmins. SuperAdmins have all permissions within the system: They can create, edit and remove administrators, and change the admins' permissions, including the permissions of other SuperAdmins. Restricted Admins, on the other hand, are admins who have restricted permissions within the system. Example: One admin may be allowed to send messages, another may be allowed to view users, etc. It is important to set the permissions properly depending on the needs of your admin.
  • Subscriber – Known as a user in the old version of phpList, a subscriber is first and foremost an email address registered within the phplist database. More specifically, a Subscriber is an email address plus some specific Preferences, such as “I always want HTML emails”, and optionally, some Attributes (“my name is Bob”, “I'm a Pastafarian”). Depending on the attributes created by the site administrators, more information can be attached to a subscriber besides his/her email address: last name, country, computer used, favorite color, etc. PhpList employs a very flexible “membership” concept. Subscribers subscribe (or become members) to lists, and register to receive campaigns. They access the front-end of the system.
  • Foreign Key - If you use another ('foreign') database system to maintain you users list and want to synchronize that database with phpList's users database, you can use the 'foreign key' field. A foreign key is a unique ID, usually generated in the foreign database system, that identifies a user record. When importing subscribers, phpList will first check if users in the csv file have a foreign key it can match with users in the phpList database. If so, it will use the foreign key ID to identify the user, instead of the email address as it normally would. This has the advantage that if you are importing a list of subscribers, some of whom may have recently changed their email addresses, phpList will be able to match the subscriber's foreign key and update all other attributes, including the subscribers’ email addresses.
  • Black Listed - The Blacklist, or 'blocking list', is a list of all subscribers that have unsubscribed. When a subscriber unsubscribes from all lists, his/her email address is automatically placed on the 'blacklist' in order to make sure they are never sent messages again in the future. Blacklisted subscribers remain in the system, however, until they are manually deleted/purged by an Administrator through the Bulk Remove process. Even then, the email address will always remain in the blacklist table, meaning that even if they are imported again, phpList won't send any emails.
  • Suppression – Refers to the action of temporarily unconfirming subscribers from all Lists. This is a temporary action, but can be rendered permanent if the Permanent option is selected. Permanently suppressing a subscriber is equivalent to adding the subscriber to the “Blacklist.” A subscriber is removed from the non-permanent suppression when they are confirmed again.
  • CSV - A “Comma (or character) Separated Value” file format with the usual extension of .csv or .txt. A CSV file stores tabular data in plain text form, and it corresponds to a single relation in a relational database. Despite the name, CSV files rarely use commas since they're so common in normal text. When imported, phpList will examine CSV files an input the appropriate data into preselected lists. Importing subcribers via CSV file is one of the three ways an Administrator can import subscribers within phpList.
  • Delimiter - A sequence of one or more characters used to specify the boundary between separate, independent regions in plain text or other data streams. Found in CSV files, the default delimiter in PhpList is “Tab.” Common delimiters are semicolons (;), pipes (|) and tabs (\).
  • Bounces – A campaign message that is returned because it could not be delivered for a number of reasons: The mailbox of the recipient might be full, the email address might no longer be valid or temporarily disabled, the email address might be misspelled, etc. A bounce is not the same as an out-of-office reply.
  • Category - Used to organize lists into different groups. From a subscriber perspective, categories are not important, since they are never visible to the subscriber. From an admin perspective, they help manage lists.
  • Placeholders - Content that can be added to the default code in the settings page. They are a special word enclosed in square-brackets, that stands-in for data that is to be inserted later on in the HTML and/or text message. In phpList, placeholders hold the place for dynamic data and provide an effective way to personalize messages. Some useful placeholders include: [WEBSITE] - the address you type for your website; [DOMAIN] - the text you type for your domain; [SUBSCRIBEURL] - the location of the subscribe page; [UNSUBSCRIBEURL] - the location of the unsubscribe page; [PREFERENCESURL] - the location of the page where users can update their details; and [CONFIRMATIONURL] - the location of the page where users have to confirm their subscription.
  • Reconcile Subscribers – Refers to a number of administrative actions an Admin has over groups of subscribers. From the “Reconcile Subscribers” page, admins can render all subscribers to receive HTML or Text versions of campaigns. The Admin can also confirm subscribers on any and all lists, move to a new list those subscribers that are not subscribed to any list, and delete subscribers in a variety of ways. The admin can delete subscribers with more than “X” number of bounces, or delete subscribers that have not confirmed their subscription within “X” days of their original signup date.
  • Lists – Lists are what subscribers subscribe to, and become members of.
  • Embargoed – A stoppage put on a campaign message so it is not send before a predetermined time and date set by the administrator. It is a capability used when sending campaigns. By default, the embargo is set to today at 0:00, meaning the campaigns are sent immediately after the queue is processed. It is important to note that the embargo has an effect on the time the sending of a message starts, and not the time that the messages actually arrive in a subscriber’s inbox.
  • Requeue – This action places a campaign back in the queue to be processed. The embargo of a campaign will be set to the time plus the requeue frequency specified in the ‘requeue every’ field of the scheduling process. This will cause a campaign to be sent to subscribers who have signed up, after sending the original campaign.
  • Backend - The back-end of phpList refers to the administrators interface, i.e., all the pages viewable only by administrators (with the various functions: user, messages, system, etc.).
  • Frontend – The front-end of phpList refers to all the pages viewable by the public (such as subscribe page, preferences page, etc.), as opposed to the administrators (such as attributes, send a message, etc.).
  • Throttle - Throttle refers to the send speed setting of phpList. To be more precise, it refers to a small delay between each sent message, in order to slow down the send speed and thus avoid overloading the server. Throttle can be configured through the MAILQUEUE_THROTTLE or the MAILQUEUE_AUTOTHROTTLE setting in config.php.
documentation/glossary.txt · Last modified: 2013/07/26 14:29 by sraymond34

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