Saturday, November 13, 2010

Blind Carbon Copy Is Your Friend!

Do you have friends or family who send you junk emails that include a long list of forwarded addresses?

Do you have friends or family who insist on CC'ing every single person in their address book, revealing the names and contact information of every single person in their address book?

Are you sick of it and want it to stop? Then copy/paste the following "email" into a new email message and BCC it to every offender.
Actually, go ahead and BCC it to everyone in your address book, because people need a little refresher on email etiquette every once and a while.

Dear Family and Friends:

Do you like forwarding jokes? I admit that I do like forwarding the occasional joke, helpful tip or cute picture. I don't like chain letters, religious or political propaganda (but that's a topic for another email). Lots of people do, which means emails with jokes spread quickly around the net. Unfortunately, this often means email addresses spread with them, and could eventually end up in the hands of people who spread spam emails. If you forward your joke emails with Blind Carbon Copy, you'll help protect their addresses from reaching these spammers.

When you open this email you should have seen two names. Mine and Yours. Did you see a list of emails addresses of people you don't know, don't care to know, or insane people you have been previously stalked by? No? That's because I used Blind Carbon Copy or BCC. It's because I like you, so I am protecting you and your contact information.

You wouldn't want someone giving out your phone number without asking, would you? Of course not, that's because it's rude to do so without asking. So why would you send out the email address of every person in your contact list to every person in your contact list? That's what happens when you use CC.

I am going to assume that most people know how to use BCC, but here is a quick tutorial using this email as an example.
Click Forward at the top of this email. Add your own email address in the TO:
I am using Yahoo, so there is button to "show BCC". You might see "Add BCC".
Instead of inputting your contact list in the CC, input their info in the BCC.

And for added protection, go ahead and delete the previous sender's information from the top of the email, because that defeats the purpose of BCC.

Click Send.

You just sent an email with BCC. Super easy. Now just remember to use BCC in the future and you can help prevent spammers from sending spam, and viruses and trojans from spreading.

So when do I use CC? Ideally if you are sending to one person, and you want a copy for yourself. However, it's also acceptable when being used at work, and it's work related. Or group discussions needing feedback or communication from everyone involved (and they already know each other) and getting everyone together for an online chat isn't possible.

If you are in doubt the reliability of the information of any forwarded email check or google keywords of the email. For example "BCC email etiquette", "Earn $5000 from Mystery Shopping", or "Nigerian Lottery' to see if the information is legitimate or a scam.

Please note this is not a personal attack on anyone, it's simply a lesson on email etiquette that may be forwarded to anyone and everyone.

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