Request Harvard to Keep its Promise on Post​.​Harvard​.​Edu and Alumni​.​Harvard​.​Edu

Request Harvard to Keep its Promise on Post​.​Harvard​.​Edu and Alumni​.​Harvard​.​Edu

October 14, 2022
Signatures: 3,341Next Goal: 5,000
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Why this petition matters

Started by David Huang

Update Oct 27, 2022

We want to thank Harvard for hearing and listening to the call to continue alumni email from all the Harvard alumni who have spoken both from self-interest and from concern for the University. Though we have heard that many alums felt wounded by this plan we know we can come together and restore trust. We appreciate Harvard recognizing our importance as alumni in the life of our University and our desire to remain connected to one another and to our alma mater.  

As we move forward, and as Harvard reviews solutions, we collectively request two things: 

1. We ask that permanent, full alumni inbox email accounts be made available to Harvard alumni, as they are at almost all of the other top 35 US universities. Again, attached is a list of links to each of these institutions’ alumni email information for reference as Harvard searches for solutions. Alumni Email Services Link
2. We ask that alumni email accounts be offered to all alumni of Harvard University, past, present, and future, whether their email is active or inactive, to include the Harvard graduates of 2021, 2022 and beyond. 

A number of alumni from the high tech, legal, educational and other relevant sectors have expressed interest in collaborating with HAA to find a solution to alumni email services – we request HAA let us know if we may provide HAA with a list of volunteers.   

We look forward to hearing the results of discussions about alumni email at the HAA Directors meetings this week and hope we can come to a more complete resolution to this problem quickly. 


Petition as of Oct 26, 2022

We, the undersigned, request that Harvard University and the Harvard Alumni Association cease deactivating and email addresses and continue to provide alumni email forwarding.

Many alumni have recently learned that Harvard plans to delete our and email addresses, with the first wave of addresses to disappear in December 2022. 

Tens of thousands of us – potentially hundreds of thousands – have been using these as our primary email addresses and account logins for 25+ years. The time and expense of changing our accounts on hundreds of sites and our email addresses with thousands of professional and personal contacts should not be underestimated. Inevitably, many will be missed, resulting in lost business, lost friends, and lost access to accounts. All because our “lifetime” accounts are being revoked. 

When the alumni email forwarding program began, we were promised that we would be able to use our email addresses for the rest of our lives. Many of us saw early dot com email providers come and go, and while it was difficult to trust any company for decades, we believed we could trust Harvard, so we adopted the forwarding service to minimize changes to our email addresses. In addition, a email address provided a connection with our alma mater that kept it in the forefront of our minds, surely germane when donation appeals arrived.

On October 11, the Harvard Crimson highlighted the problem and alumni frustration in one of the most widely read articles that week.  (

The article quoted Adam S. Hickey ’99, “I liked the idea of having an address that was going to follow me forever, so that if I change from one provider to another in the future, that address would always be good. And so I used my post.harvard address for almost everything, virtually everything that asked me for an email address. Over the last 20-some years, hundreds of accounts.”

We believe Harvard should continue to maintain this email forwarding service as promised or give us an alternative that allows us to maintain our Harvard addresses. While the university has cited liability and technical concerns, Harvard could surely overcome those to keep the alumni email addresses active, as all seven of the rest of the Ivy League universities have, MIT, Stanford, and the other top 35 US News & World Report universities.

On behalf of the numerous alumni signers below, we plead with Harvard University, Harvard College and the Harvard Alumni Association to hear our call for action and change course on this misguided, detrimental decision that will undermine the connections of thousands of alumni to the university and to one another.

Members of the Harvard College Classes of 1991 and 1997

Helen Fairman, David Huang, Chris Nicholson, Clay West, Sally Wolf

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Signatures: 3,341Next Goal: 5,000
Support now