The Hassles Caused by Lacking Email Etiquette

Learn how a lack of email etiquette can lead to real problems for those on the receiving end of the communication.


As even spammers themselves hate receiving spam, one must be very careful when handling the details of their email contacts. We've all been through it, having gotten invitations to discipline-orientated "friend groups", whatever the discipline might be, as a direct result of others passing our details on. We've all taken the time to delete, with a huge sigh of annoyance, emails that had been forwarded to dozens of people, containing pictures or jokes that someone lacking an occupation thought were funny and should be sent to everyone they know. Day after day, it becomes exasperating.

Think Before You Redistribute Something to Your Email Contacts

Media sharing is a good way of expressing oneself, it's fair enough doing it now and again, but there are also limits. One cannot possibly expect their contacts not to be annoyed when receiving a number of emails on a daily basis, containing the most redundant array of minutia, from photos of beautifully coloured parrots, to funny animal videos, to jokes or witty stories, and whatever else someone might want to share with the world.

Whilst it might not be so annoying for the younger generation, people who handle their business online will have to fish out their important business emails from a sea of such useless messages, forwarded again and again. Not only do some people send them to everyone in their contact list, but they forward the ones that they receive as well, so the vicious cycle of incoming minutia never ends.

Don't Use Sites that Demand Access to Your Contact List

A considerate thing to do is to never give in to the requests of some sites you use, which require a membership, as to giving access to your contact list, so all your contacts are invited to join. In the eventuality that they will not be interested and delete the initial invitation, they are likely to keep being targeted by those sites by weekly or monthly emails, some even slipping though the spam filter and ending up in their inbox.

Learn to Use BCC to Distribute Emails Privately to Multiple Recipients

Another way to protect others' privacy, when emailing a large number of people, is not to use paste their addresses in the CC field of your email program, as you will make them visible to everyone. Instead, use the BCC (blind carbon copy) function, which only shows the receiver's own email address on your message.

Try and Combine Related Issues into One Communication

To avoid pestering others, it's worth taking a good while to write an email that you know is meant to comprise several matters, instead of sending an additional one for each matter, as you remember it, thus making them reply more than once, especially since you don't know how busy they are.

Don't Take Liberties with Others' Email Addresses

Also, although causes that are close to our hearts have our indefinite and strong support, we must understand that some of our contacts might not be as passionate about them as we are and might not like to be approached by campaigners. Therefore asking them before we hand over their email address to such organizations is a must.

Think Before You Email, Before it's too Late

All in all, no matter how enthusiastic you are about something you've discovered online, before sharing it with everyone you know, take the time to consider whether they would be as interested as you are.

Idle talk occurs when people are face to face and have little else to do, but no one should be forced to read or keep deleting an avalanche of idle emails. It's guaranteed they will be deleted and you might end up in the spam section.

Most people are too polite to say "Stop sending me s---!" so it's up to you to police your wilder impulses before they take matters into their own hands by consigning you automatically to trash.


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