How can I send a broadcast fax from OSX Lion for free?

I want to fax everyone in the U.S. Senate and House, which is about 535 numbers. Trying to do that with more than 3 pages twice a month gets expensive online. I would love to find an alternative to PageSender that will work on Mac’s OSX Lion. All the online services charge per page or minute and the built in fax in OSX Lion will not let you select a group to fax to. Is there a way to do this?

Unfortunately, I don’t think you can send a broadcast fax from OSX Lion for free. Apple has decided that faxing is essentially obsolete, and they’re doing their darndest to push you towards encrypted emails and other forms of communication. You may, however, still be able to do this fairly cheaply.

First off: you are correct. PageSender is not going to support Lion, and there’s no cheap alternative. PageSender required a modem or an external service, and according to their website, they’ve basically thrown in the towel in the face of Lion. The cheapest alternative programs run hundreds of dollars, and for a single use, that’s not appropriate.

Lion doesn’t have support for the Apple USB Modem, so fax communication using the print to fax method isn’t going to be possible if that’s what you’ve been using. If you have a little money to invest in a new modem, however, there are some that work with Lion. Zoom makes a modem that will allow you to fax from 10.7, and these devices usually cost around $50. All you need is the phone line.

So, assuming you can just print to fax, as you might have with earlier operating systems, you could set up your computer to print/fax your document to a list of numbers automatically using a macro in the program you are using or Automator. That would be almost as good as a broadcast fax. More importantly, you would only be out the cost of the modem (and the phone time, which might be significant).

Another workaround you might try is using an email-to-fax service where you send your faxes from your email address. Using this method, you can simply convert your list of phone numbers into the service’s dialing format (usually using the number as part of the email address), address your single message to all your recipients, and send it off to the service. This will definitely cost money, but it probably won’t be a lot: many of these services have a free one month trial, with extra pages that cost between 12 and 15 cents. If your fax is a single page long and your free trial includes 350 pages with extra pages billed at 12 cents, that would cost you under $25. That’s the best case scenario, at least. You’ll have to shop around and do the math to see which method will be the least expensive. If you need some help finding an email fax provider, you can find a great fax price comparison at

Also, FaxZero recently added a free fax your representatives feature, so you can individually fax a member of the Senate or House of Representatives.

Do you have a question about faxing? Send me your fax question.