Netiquette

Email netiquette (net etiquette or etiquette on the Internet)

Write your email with an awareness that subtle emotions and meanings do not transmit well. Facial expressions, body language and tone of voice are not a part of the message, so reread your message before sending, looking for language that could be easily misunderstood. (Similarly, read emails you receive knowing that you could easily be misinterpreting messages that seem harsh or abrupt.)

Use a five-seven word subject line that clearly communicates the topic of your email. This prompts the recipient to open your message, as well as helps them to organize and manage their email.

Avoid the use of ALL CAPITAL LETTERS. This is considered rude – equal to shouting or screaming.

Be concise. Emails are meant to be read quickly.

Complete, correctly structured and capitalized sentences that reflect proper grammar and punctuation are crucial to your message. Review and spell-check every message before clicking Send. Poorly written emails can give the impression you are either lazy or illiterate.

Don’t write anything through an email that you wouldn’t tell someone face-to-face.

Refrain from formatting your email with colored text and background colors or images in your day-to-day communications. These choices can make your emails difficult to read or reply to without having to go through a procedure to convert them to plain text first.

When sending a group of people the same email, list all of the recipients’ email addresses in the Blind Carbon Copy (Bcc:) field. Using Bcc ensures the recipients’ addresses remain invisible and protected from the view of the other recipients – some of whom they may or may not know.

Be careful to not forward hoaxes. To check out if warnings or anecdotes are legitimate, go to one of these sites:
http://www.snopes.com/
http://urbanlegends.about.com/

Remember, once you write the message and send it, you have no control over it. Any message you send could be saved or forwarded by its recipient.