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NYU mailing list blunder results in 'reply all' messages reaching nearly 40,000 students

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NYU computer lab flickr
NYU computer lab flickr

What began as an innocent email blast from the NYU bursar's office to students quickly devolved into inbox chaos after it was discovered that "reply all' responses were being sent to 39,979 members of the student body. Appropriately referred to as "Replyallcalypse," the unplanned campus-wide discussion broke out Monday night when Max Wiseltier attempted to forward along the original message to his mother, but instead wound up responding to its sender — along with thousands of his fellow students.

NYU Local, a campus blog, reports that his fateful error resulted in an evening full of cat GIFs, photos of Nicolas Cage, and questions like, "would you rather fight 100 duck sized horses, or 1 horse sized duck?" Some used the rare opportunity to thank NYU's community for their college experience, while others passed on inspiration-filled messages like "I want all of us to be happy forever." The incident even spawned a "Reply All Party" planned for this Saturday, with more than 1,000 individuals planning to attend. Ultimately a member of NYU's Student Resource Center took responsibility for the debacle; he'd erroneously used a mailing list that accepted student replies, whereas the school normally dispatches mass emails through a service that doesn't allow reply-all messages.