Communication and Technology

Your community will eventually need mechanisms for communicating with the outside world (e.g, website, public-facing calendar of events) as well as mechanisms for disseminating information to members and fostering communication between and among members.

Guiding Questions

What kinds of things does your community intend to communicate internally?


What does your group want the world to know about it?


What kinds of communication structures are easy to maintain (for leadership team) and easy to participate in (for participants)?

Getting Started

While there are many many options out there for managing the communication technology of your COMMIT, this page suggests some practical options for using the Google suite of tools to manage your community's email, listserv, website, and calendar.

Choose an official name

Make a google account for your group 

This is optional, but this can ease any issues of particular leaders owning websites, accounts, or documents; it also gives you a branded and stable email address for contacting your group

Make a logo (optional)

This is optional, but there are many options on making a regional  COMMIT Network logo. Options such as:

Note our logo policy:

Make a website. 

We suggest that you add to your website the following: 

More examples of what to add to your website can be found at and each region linked from that website.

Once your website is up and running email with the URL. We will then get your website linked to the COMMIT Network main website. 

Make a calendar

Once your calendar is created follow up with to make sure the request went through and your calendar was added to the COMMIT Network ( website.

Case Studies

AMIIBL: Using a university listserv vs. google group, why we changed.

When we first started AMIIBL, I (Nina White) set up a listserv through my institution. The advantages of this setup included: easy to add members, no one need to opt-in, emails would go to an inbox (rather than a promotions or spam folder). However, one small disadvantage was that no one could easily unsubscribe themselves. And a much bigger disadvantage was that no one else on my leadership team would be able to manage the listserv at the point when I leave the leadership team. This was a deal-breaker. So after a year or so of the institutional listserv, we made the important decision---for the sake of sustainability---to move our listserv to a Google Group. However, the Google Group comes with its own challenges, which are well-captured by the MD-DC-VA case study below.

MD-DC-VA: Google group ups and downs

One of our first leaders created a Google Group which has served as our membership list and main communication tool for years.  

Advantages:  It’s free and mostly works.

Disadvantages and workarounds:


Whatever technological tools you choose to use, there are some considerations that will help make your technology suite more sustainable. In particular, you want the tools to be easy (not time consuming) and to be able to weather changes in leadership. Questions to consider:

Who is taking on the tech? And are your tools easy to use and maintain?

What costs are involved in your tools? 

Who “owns” the various accounts you use? 

Also consider the ways that technology can improve the sustainability of your community. See, in particular, our description of an "activated listserv" on the Membership Base page.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

What does your website say about your commitment to diversity and inclusion?

See more about diversity and inclusion statements on the Membership Base page.

Does your website meet or surpass WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines)? 

You can see this introduction for a lot more details. A very digestible short version can be found here: Below is a subset of that list:

What norms do you have on your listserv that encourage participation, inclusion, and safety?

Further Resources and Ideas