5 pointers for proper email forwarding

email forwardingEmail forwarding can be a valuable tool if you’re passing along helpful information to people who will benefit from it. But problems arise when you don’t think before you pass along information that’s not directly related to your work.

If you’re in the habit of forwarding messages along to friends, colleagues or everyone in your address book, you’ll want to take these important etiquette tips from teacher and author Vicki Davis.

1.  Don’t hurt your credibility with false information. The “breaking news” most chain emails include should be taken with a grain of salt. Check your facts at snopes.com to verify the information.

2.  Edit the subject line. No one wants to open an email titled “Fwd: Fwd: Fwd.” Edit the subject line to remove every “Fwd:” and make it clear to the recipients what they’re about to read.

3.  Include a message of your own at the top. Let the recipients know why you think this email is important and worth their time to read. Otherwise, you’re wasting your time and theirs.

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4.  Delete all the email ad­dresses from the body of the email. That chain of emails could fall into the hands of someone willing to sell them to spammers or identity thieves. It’s potentially invasive and lacks consideration for others’ privacy.

5.  Use BCC when you forward to a group. Again, protect your contacts’ privacy. Unless you’re forwarding to a small group of close friends or colleagues, don’t share everyone’s address with the whole group of recipients.        

— Adapted from “5 Email Tips Everyone Should Know Before Forwarding Email,” Vicki Davis.