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How To Hint About Email Etiquette?

How do you politely inform your friends or family members who are not all that into Email Etiquette that they need to bone up on the subject?

I am always ready to learn although I do not always like being taught.
~ Winston Churchill

That’s a tough one…

In my years of experience no matter how polite or “nice” you are in trying to explain the nuances of proper email etiquette, many get defensive, have hurt feelings and some get downright mad! How dare you tell them what to do!?

Increasingly folks tend to expect to be able to do what they want to do. It’s a free country! I have my first amendment rights! Yeah, that all applies. But best practices and common courtesy are things that bind a society together. On and off-line.

Think of Courtesy

Why do some become so defensive about being courteous? Courtesy doesn’t take much effort and that’s just what nice people do. Email Etiquette is simply about understanding how your actions or lack thereof can affect your relationships when using technology.

The fact remains that all of us — each and every one of us — was thrown into technology without any formal training. To think you “know it all” or have nothing more to learn is naive at best. Heck, I still learn something new each and every day and I’ve been online before most knew what online was!

How do I get others onboard?

I get emailed daily asking for a “nice way” to tell someone to not do this or that. What I then advise is to find the appropriate article for the issue you want to bring to their attention and use the email share button at the bottom of every article to send the intended party an email with a link to that specific article.

Folks are more open to embracing new ideas if they aren’t made to feel as though they are stupid, uninformed or doing something wrong. This is where some psychology come in!

Hey, Jane:

I found this neat site, NetManners.com, that has a bunch of info on Email Etiquette. I came across this article and wanted to share it with you. Who knew!?

I learned a few things I wasn’t aware of and thought you would be interested too! HTH! 😉

Your friend,

By using the above approach, you are sending them to a valuable resource so they can read and learn and hopefully avoid feeling as though they are being corrected.


Every act of conscious learning requires the willingness to suffer an injury to one’s self-esteem. That is why young children, before they are aware of their own self-importance, learn so easily.
~ Thomas Szasz

Feel free to include the above quote in your email as well!

Get the word out...