E-mail Etiquette

E-mail etiquette is just a small part of Netiquette - no, that’s not a typo! Netiquette is Internet Etiquette for all aspects of the internet, including e-mailing.

The most important and most used and abused is the e-mailing part of the net. Here are some rules to follow for forwarding E-mails. These rules are for those who are being truly considerate and thoughtful Bookmark and Share :

E-mail Etiquette Rule 1. Don’t forward anything without editing out all the forwarding >>>>>, other e-mail addresses, headers, and commentary from all the other forwarders.

People really don’t want to look amongst all the gobbly-gook to see what it is you thought was worth forwarding. If you must forward, only forward the actual ‘guts’ or content of the e-mail that you are of the opinion is valuable.

E-mail Etiquette Rule 2. If you cannot take the time to write a personal comment at the top of your forwarded e-mail to the person you are sending to – then you shouldn’t forward it at all.

E-mail Etiquette Rule 3. Think carefully about if the e-mail you are forwarding will be of value (accurate information - check for hoaxes at Snopes.com), will it be appreciated (is it something the recipient is interested in or needs), if it is humorous (do they have the same sense of humor as you do).

If you cannot think of why the person you are forwarding to would like to receive the e-mail - then simply don’t forward it.

E-mail Etiquette Rule 4. It should go without saying that forwarding of e-mail chain letters; regardless how noble the topic may seem, virus warnings or anything that says ‘forward to everyone you know’, simply should not be forwarded because in most cases it is plain old garbage.

Remember, e-mail is only e-mail; it does not have any magical powers that can bring you bad luck or whatever else the chain letter threatens. By the same token it cannot bring you fame and fortune as they promise.

E-mail Etiquette Rule 5. If you must forward an e-mail to more than one person, put your e-mail address in the To: field and all the others you are sending to in the Bcc: field to protect their e-mail address from being published to those they do not know.

This is a serious privacy issue! Do not perpetuate a breech of privacy started by other forwarders who included their contact’s addresses in the To: or Cc: field by continuing to forward those visible addresses to your contacts.

Remove any e-mail addresses in the body of the e-mail that have been forwarded by those who disregard the privacy of their friends and associates.

Rule 6. Keep in mind that if you are forwarding a private e-mail that was sent to you, you must get the sender’s permission to forward it on to others (or to post it publicly).

E-mails are copyright protected by their authors. Not only that, common courtesy dictates that you should ask the author first if the e-mail sent for your eyes only can be forwarded to strangers or others for which it was not originally intended.

Rule 7. Use the Subject field to enter a clear concise indication of what the e-mail is about. This is a very useful field and can be helpful to the recipient if used judiciously, so make it informative.

Rule 8. Type in capitals only if you mean to SHOUT. Now, it is ill-mannered to shout, so, type in lower case and remember your punctuation.

You do not want to give the impression of sloppiness. Save multi-coloured text for love letters and kindergarten kids to express their creativity.

Rule 9. It is alright to intersperse your replies between a whole bunch of questions; just be sure to reply in a different coloured text so that your replies stand out.

It would help to start the reply with the customary greeting and then refer the recipient to the answers written below each question.

Rule 10. Keep your attachments to less than one MB (if possible). It will transmit faster and avoid 'time-outs."

Rule 11. With all the above "rules" to consider would it be more friendly, personal and enjoyable to simply telephone them? Ahh, then you would do well to brush up on your Tips on Telephone Etiquette

If one cannot make these extra efforts, then you really have no excuse for feeling hurt when asked to stop sending this unwanted mail.

If you are asked to stop forwarding, don’t get mad; just realize the person on the other side is not interested or too busy to have to cope with a whole bunch of unwanted e-mail.

Also, they have every right to make that request.

At the end of the day, when it comes to receiving unwanted forwarded e-mails, if you fear hurting someone’s feelings by asking them to stop forwarding you e-mails, just keep in mind they probably meant well, they were thinking of you and were trying to make a point ….. ummmmmmm in that case, just hit the delete button.

On the other hand you can always send them this web page on E-mail Etiquette. Bookmark and Share

Business E-mails

Businesses are being swamped with email to such an extent that productivity is being affected.

A lot can be done to avoid propagating email stress and corporate spam by observing the following points:

- avoid sending an email unless it is absolutely necessary

- avoid sending copies or forwarding emails to persons not directly involved in the subject matter

- if you must forward an email, delete the parts that are irrelevant to the recipient

- think carefully before you decide to click "reply to all"

- do not request a delivery receipt or that the email has been read unless such information is vital

- if you reply just to say "thanks" you are contributing to corporate spam. It's courteous, but is it necessary?

- use the Subject field to concisely and accurately describe the contents

- avoid ambiguity to stop a further exchange of emails seeking clarification

- keep the contents clear and to the point

- does your email really require a reply? If not just end with NRN (no reply necessary)

Can't find what you are looking for? Try our Google Search below:

Web www.a-to-z-of-manners-and-etiquette.com

We would love you to share your experiences and views on e-mail etiquette in our Interactive Visitors Forum E-mail Etiquette.

Your contribution if appropriate, may be published in our Rage Page.

Back to the A - Z Guide.