Our e-newsletter script went broke... need help!
June 23, 2008 10:39 AM   Subscribe

PHP List is borked, and our e-newsletter was supposed to go out this morning! Does anyone have suggestions for a similar online e-newsletter management system (preferably free or ultra-inexpensive)?

Here's the downlow:

- Subscription list of roughly 2,000
- We send our newsletter once a week
- Nothing fancy, just a script that sends in basic HTML and plain text (if the client doesn't support the latter)
- We don't want something that runs as an app, we like it being hosted and run off our server

PHP List was working great, but it suddenly stopped doing so about an hour ago. I think it's time for us to part ways. Any suggestions would be great!
posted by (bb|[^b]{2}) to Computers & Internet (6 answers total)
poMMo is the obvious alternative. Not as old, not as big a user/developer base, but it avoids some of PHPlist's wrinkles (having to run in an open browser or do stuff with cron).
posted by holgate at 11:14 AM on June 23, 2008

In the short term I'd look into why PHP List is broken; software doesn't suddenly 'wear out', so there might be a simple problem, possibly unrelated to PHP List (e.g crashed service, lack of resources, incompatible upgrade, etc.). It's also sensible to check if any data is damaged ASAP before any backup rotations result in irreversible loss.
posted by malevolent at 1:15 PM on June 23, 2008

Seconding that you should look into why it doesn't work.

If you still want to leave PHPList, check our Mailman, while it can do much more than a newsletter, it can do that as well.
posted by Brian Puccio at 1:46 PM on June 23, 2008

Yeah, if you can write a custom signup and sending/composing frontend to mailman (or I bet there's ones out there) that might be your best bet for reliability. PHPList has always struck me as a bit hacky -- the source is pretty messy -- so moving away from it wouldn't be terrible. I've heard of pommo but can't remember why we decided against it (probably the lack of one must-have feature or another).

You might also look at OpenEMM although it runs on a java stack so it may be a little more complicated for you to install.

There's not really a ton of free options out there -- I've been asked to look at open source solutions for newsletters many times, and often we end up deciding it's cheaper in the long run to pay an ASP particularly if you want good tracking and reports.
posted by fishfucker at 2:19 PM on June 23, 2008

It may be worth outsourcing the whole pile to campaign monitor. Pretty cheap, and someone else's system administrator deals with it if it's borked.
posted by jenkinsEar at 3:33 PM on June 23, 2008

posted by polyglot at 10:17 PM on June 23, 2008

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