Rotary Club of Nene Valley
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Email do's and dont's
Courtesy of the www.netmanners.com website we reproduce some very wise advice about the use of email, wrtitten by Judith Kallos
Email Etiquette: - Get to Know the Basics! Part 2
October 5, 2008 By Judith Kallos
1. Understand that you will be on a continual learning curve. All of us are. This gig is changing constantly. The only consistency is change! If you do not have the desire to learn and do not make the effort to understand the “culture” of the technology in which you are participating, you will not be taken seriously by your fellow Netizens.
You also may get some terse emails from other onliners pointing such issues out to you – some may not be as nice as others. When this happens, do not fire back at them! Use situations like this as an opportunity to learn what you are doing wrong so you do not anger others and can have a more enjoyable time.
2. If you receive a nasty email – do not respond immediately – if at all. People are very bold and overly critical on the other side of this screen. In my experience they tend to not hesitate to point out the things they think you need improvement on while not even noticing the good or positive points on the very same issue.
Many times these folks are simply trying to get a rise out of you (this is called trolling) or are trying to make themselves feel self-important. Sometimes they are just plain jerks. If you do not have something nice or constructive to say, or at the very least sternly professional – just hit delete.
3. Keep in mind that all private email is considered to be copyrighted by the original author. If you post private email to a public list or board, or forward it to an outside party in whole or in part, you must include the author’s permission to post the material publicly. Not doing so can get you into some deep doo-doo legally or with your friends and associates.
Think of it this way… how would you feel if a personal private email that you had written for a specific purpose/person is then plastered across the Internet or forwarded to folks you do not know? Always ask for permission before forwarding or posting any private emails!
4. Always minimize, compress or “zip” large files before sending. Many folks new to the online world do not realize how large documents, graphics or photo files are. Guess what? They are large enough to fill someone’s email box and cause their other mail to bounce! Get in the habit of compressing anything over 500,000 bytes (500K). (You can view file sizes in Windows Explorer. Simply right click on the file name and choose properties.)
There are several types of file compression software available for these purposes. Do not send unannounced large attachments to others because you think that photo or file is cute or cool or neat. Always ask first!
More importantly when sending business files by email, do so only during business hours, always compress and send at a prearranged time! If you do not know how to compress files, then you need to learn how to make them physically smaller with graphic software. Those are your two choices; compressing or minimizing.
Minimizing a photo or graphic’s physical size to no larger than 600 pixels in width will make them emailable. Most photos right off your camera are 1,000 pixels plus in width which makes for a very, very large file size. Nothing need be larger than 600 pixels to view anyway. Or you could be really courteous and learn how to use the free Web space offered by your ISP to upload photos and simply send the link to friends and family to view.
If you do not know how to do any of these things all you have to do is learn!
To send large files that take a long time to download that may not respect the other person’s time, reflect their sense of humor or point of view and may even max out their email box is pretty inconsiderate and downright lazy.
5. Do not forward virus warnings! Virus warnings received from others are generally always hoaxes. [Great Resource: Symantec's Virus Hoax Page] Especially if an email tells you to forward to everyone you know–don’t!! Delete those emails and do not forward them! Definitely ignore those forwarded emails instructing you to delete files on your computer – they could be critical files that your computer needs to operate.
Only warn friends if you know that your computer has a virus that you inadvertently may have passed on to them. Rely only on your virus software and your software provider’s website for the real scoop. If you get one of these wacky emails from a friend or associate, go to your virus software provider’s site and search for the virus name in question to confirm if it is accurate information or if it is a hoax.
When you find it to be a hoax, let the person who forwarded it to you know that they are perpetrating misinformation and unintentionally alarming others. Read what your Virus Software provider has to say before you unnecessarily alarm folks and in the process end up looking rather silly to say the least. There are many urban legends purely in existence to watch all the Newbies screw up their computer’s configuration files or forward the fake email to “everyone they know” while looking rather foolish in the process.
You know what they say… There’s a Newbie born every minute!
6. It is clear… The need for a 24/7 real-time virus protection software is no longer a choice – it is your responsibility to remain virus free. You will also need to update your virus files regularly. Check for updates every time you log on so that your computer is protected from the latest releases or use the automatic update feature of your virus software.