Email Etiquette IV

By: Kathie M. Thomas

Further to my previous issues this subject continues - part IV. This month I'll share on Blind Carbon Copy (BCC) field and the use of backgrounds for your emails. The use of Bad language in emails will also be mentioned.

Many people do not understand the function of the BCC field in their email programs. When you set up a new message, if you cannot view the BCC field after TO: and CC: then click on View to see if you can add it to your current view, or check your Help file for the program you use for assistance.BCC is an old typing term - 'Blind Carbon Copy'. It means a copy of a letter or document that is being sent to someone not showing on the original addressee or distribution list. To use BCC in email means that recipients only see their address on received email and not the list of people that you've sent the email to.I often receive emails from people in business who put every single recipient address in the TO: or CC: fields, when in fact they should be placed in the BCC: field. Your distribution list should be kept private so you are not exposing firstly, who your clients are, and secondly, their email addresses, should a spammer or someone unscrupulous come across the email.

If you're sending out a newsletter, or a merged letter by post you wouldn't have your full address list or database included with that mail for all to see - so why do it with your email?

Backgrounds

There is a great supply of backgrounds now available for use in various email programs - which help make your emails look more attractive and less boring. However, some backgrounds would be better used as wallpaper on your computer desktop and make it difficult to read the email message you are sending. If you want to use them, keep them for family and friends, but stick with fairly plain backgrounds for business email. I like to use those that have a simple corner frame, or a side border with a pale background but never a background that has a print across the whole of the email that makes it difficult to read the text. And if you are replying to an email that uses a background give some consideration as to whether it should continue to be there or whether the background should be deleted before sending the email response.

Bad Language

On occasion over the past few months I've noticed some messages with bad language posted to online discussion groups that are usually maintained for business purposes, i.e. those groups that are designed to assist people with their line of business. Whilst I appreciate that we all get annoyed with some things I really do not feel that bad language has a place in a public forum that is used for business. Perhaps this might be an old fashioned value but I doubt that people would write a business letter using bad language so I cannot understand them doing the same when posting a message to a business group. Think carefully when writing your email - is the language you are using something that might offend another person? Could the message get in front of someone you'd like to do business with? How would you like them to think of you? It only takes a moment to think about what you're written and to read it again before sending it on.

I hope you have found these tips for Email Etiquette interesting and thought-provoking.For any assistance relating to the use of email please feel free to contact our team.

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