One of the things that annoys me about email communication is the tendency to not respond. With all of the letters I’ve sent out to agents and other, I had to grit my teeth and bear it. Of course, this makes the unacknowledged emails from students, co-workers, and others I deal with just that much more annoying. (My friends and family have pretty much been read the riot act on this topic, so they tend to be good about it.) Anyway,I decided to put my complaints where they might do some good.
Yeah, yeah, so I’m dreaming.
1. Fill in the subject line! I hate when this is blank. Especially when it’s from students. Or I get a subject that’s completely generic, such as “Midterm” with no name. Multiply that by all the other midterms and I have no idea which one I’ve read. A name and the class would be nice. For others, at least put something there that has a hint about what you want to discuss.
2. Don’t send chains to acquaintances. Friends and family, people you know well, fine. If you really must. Don’t burden others, who might not think as you do with your incessant chains, to send to ten, twenty, a zillion people. I usually delete them. I rarely will pass on a chain.
3. Change your email password if your account gets hijacked. I get spam from friends quite a bit because of people getting hijacked. And if you see an odd link from a friend and they sent out a mass email, you might want to think twice about opening that link. I had one friend receive porn from one of my friends who she’d never met.
4. Acknowledge receipt of an email. I repeat: ACKNOWLEDGE RECEIPT of an email. I will almost always respond with a “Received, thanks” when people send out communications to me. It’s polite and a simple enough courtesy, so do it.
5. Use common sense in communication via email. Don’t put in information you would hare becoming public. Nothing online is private.