How NOT to Email

I get a lot of e-mail. And somewhere, between all the subscriptions to time wasting newsletter, I get a few annoying ones from real people. Some real people are welcome to mail me about anything at any time. In fact, some of these real people read, subscribe and support my blog. This does not apply to them and they are granted automatic forgiveness on all the below mistakes.

But for those people with a compulsion to hit ‘send’ without thought for me, please consider the below:

  1. NEVER use your name in the subject line as the subject. This is to be used for the contents of the mail, not as an introduction. You’re name appears next to the mail, I don’t need to see it twice. Please stop it now!
  2. DO NOT phone me to find out if I received your mail. I will reply IF necessary and when I have time. You are not the only person sending me stuff. It’s much more important that I need to be looking at. Like videos about baby donkeys and funny pictures.
  3. I find religious holiday mails offensive. STOP sending me ‘feel good’ mails about the baby Jesus and counting my blessings over Easter and Christmas. Especially if I have no idea who you are and am unfortunate enough to be on your mailing list. What if I was a Satanist or Jewish?
  4. The recall option ONLY works on an internal server and if the mail has not been read and only for people in your office. If you fuck up and send me the wrong thing, I will be getting that mail, 10 mails of you trying to recall it in a panic and your revisions of the original mail. That counts for at least 20 emails that I have to wade through. It’s annoying. Don’t do it.
  5. If I don’t know who you are I will not accept your meeting request. The correct procedure for setting up a meeting is to introduce yourself, send through your proposal and WAIT for me to get back to you. Keep in mind that I would probably want my colleagues in the meeting with me – this means I have to coordinate three diaries and it’s dependent on how badly we want to see you.
How NOT to Email

Junk Mail

Everyone with an email address gets the occasional spam message. This includes the message from that dear friend that asks you to forward this to 159 of your dear friends in the next five minutes or you will be taken out by a missile from Pakistan. Or worse, a puppy will die.

The puppy killer

It includes those mails that you actually open with the XXX subject lines and bright pink backgrounds.

Most service providers have pretty decent spam filters and most of the stuff stays out. However, software can’t pick up V*I%A^G$R(A!!!, but for anything suspicious we have junk mail folders. And now and then you need to go through them to find something that got lost, or simply because spam is really entertaining.

Blue Pill
Hey - you need to be creative when you're competing with 64 other mails a day

Besides winning the UK and Yahoo! lotteries eight times in the past two days, I have a few gems floating around my junk mail folder. On of the best (and I have no idea how to respond to it) is from Florance and this is what it said:

My name is Florance Gadu,i saw your email address today as am searching in the Internet and became interested in you, I will also like to know you more, and i want you to send an email to my email address so i can give you my picture for you to know whom ia am. I believe we can move from here I am waiting. Remember good relationship goes beyond distance and colour, honest, emotions, carer and kind that lead both ,lovers to fly highly on the wings of happiness, and in all true love is all we need in life to be happy Thanks a lot for your kind attention

I don’t know where Florance found my e-mail address or why I am interesting, but I know I’m not the only one (I’ll bet Florance is great at BCC) and it doesn’t make me feel special. What I don’t know is what the point is of spam like this might be. I’m not being asked for money, nor am I being offered money in an effort to get my banking details… I just have some stranger with poor language skills coming on to me and promising to love me forever. I can find that in a bar.


Junk Mail