Netiquette Banner Netiquette, by Virginia Shea, page 54

already upgraded to the brand-new version while you're still using the old one.

Finally, it's a good idea to include your email address within any file you send. It's a courtesy -- just like putting your return address at the top of your letter, as well as on the outside of the envelope, which might get thrown out.

Email flames

Like many other cyberspace travelers, email writers sometimes forget the Golden Rule of Netiquette -- Remember the human -- and write things they would never say out loud.

Here's a sample situation: A colleague has just used email to respond to some written work you did. The note doesn't just disagree with the point of view you took up; it attacks you in rather personal terms. You're upset. How do you respond?

It takes a little courage, but it's not difficult. First, wait a few hours -- even a day or two -- to cool down. Then reply to your colleague's note. Say that, while you respect his right to disagree with you, you want him to know that his personal comments hurt your feelings. If you choose, you may also use this note to reply to the substance of his criticisms, but it's probably better to wait. This approach usually brings the discourse back where it belongs -- to the substance of the issues, rather than the morals and personal habits of the people in the discussion. It works because it reminds your colleague that you're a human being who deserves to be treated with respect -- even over the network.

Of course, if your colleague is the kind of subhuman scum who will never get that message, just flame back. ;-) (Endnote #12)

Email as a substitute for live interaction

People will occasionally say things like "Electronic communication is no substitute for human interaction." Hogwash. Of course it is. Humans

Next Page ... Previous Page
Contents ... Index ... Netiquette Home

Copyright 1990-2004 and Seth T. Ross