Dear Miss Reader,
I hope this letter finds you well. I was doing research the other day and realized that proper e-mail etiquette has become a lackadaisical event.
In once specific incident, a friend of mine wrote an e-mail to a business on my behalf and copied me on the note. I was horrified to see her short, terse language and lack of greeting or closing. This was a formal business inquiry but would have functioned better as a text message.
I find that proper e-mail formatting includes a respectful opening, like the one seen above, and a relevant closing. In between are informative sentences with proper spelling, grammar and punctuation. It is best to rely on the Queen’s English for all written responses, not just letters or e-mails. Paragraphs should be separated by blank lines, which makes any indenting unnecessary.
I often want to inform colleagues or friends of information in e-mails, so I may forward or “BCC” them on the message. This should always be done discreetly and privately, so no personal information is disclosed. Also, when sending e-mails to multiple recipients, it is respectful to send all e-mails via “BCC” for the same reasons.
Also remember that anything written in an e-mail could easily become public knowledge. Whether it is accidentally forwarded or purposely shared, information shared in writing could potentially become public knowledge. You should never share other people’s information in writing and take caution when sharing your own.
I look forward to hearing your thoughts on this matter, Miss Reader. Please let me know if I can be of any assistance.