Along with the growing popularity of the Internet, electronic mail is
rapidly becoming the medium of choice for business and personal
communication. It is not uncommon for the typical e-mail user in
a business environment to receive more than 20 e-mail messages a day.
Many users are unfamiliar with the network etiquette, commonly called
netiquette, which keeps this form of communication both effective
and efficient. Following are some helpful netiquette tips and
Additional tips can be found at:
A good rule of thumb: Be conservative in what you send and liberal
in what you receive. Messages should be concise and to the point.
You should not send heated messages (often called "flames") even
if you are provoked.
Mail should have a subject heading that reflects the content
of the message.
In general, it's a good idea to check all your mail subjects before
responding to a message. Sometimes a person who asks you for help
(or clarification) will send another message which effectively says
"Never Mind". Also make sure that any message you respond to was
directed to you. You might be copied (cc) rather than the primary
Limit ccs to those with a need to know. Watch cc's when replying.
Don't continue to include people if the messages have become a
Make things easy for the recipient. Many mailers strip header
information that includes your return address. In order to ensure
that people know who you are, be sure to include a line or two at
the end of your message with contact information (often referred to
as a signature file).
Remember to use the Enter/Return key to keep the number of characters
per line below 80. The recipients of your message then need only
to scroll up and down - not left to right - to read the text.
Forgery and spoofing (impersonating someone else) are not
Be careful when addressing mail. There are addresses that may go
to a group although the address appears like it is just one person.
Know to whom you are sending.
Know whom to contact for help. Check locally for people who can
help you with software and system problems. Also, know whom to go
to if you receive anything questionable or illegal.
Remember that the recipient is a human being whose culture,
language, and humor have different points of reference from your own.
Remember that date formats, measurements, and idioms may not travel well.
Be especially careful with sarcasm.
Delivery receipts, non-delivery notices, and vacation programs
are neither totally standardized nor totally reliable across the
range of systems connected to Internet mail. They are invasive
when sent to mailing lists, and some people consider delivery
receipts an invasion of privacy. Be very careful if you use them.
Save the subscription messages for any lists that you join.
These usually tell you how to unsubscribe as well.
Don't send large files to mailing lists when Uniform Resource
Locators (URLs) or pointers to ftp-able versions will do.
If you want to send it as multiple files, be sure to follow the
culture of the group. If you dont know what that is, ask.