Email: Message Length, Content and Format

Always use a pertinent subject title for the message, that way the recipient can decide whether to read the message or not.
e-mails asking for action should be sent to just one person, with all others as ccs.
Don’t use bcc (blind carbon copy) which is sneaky and confusing (what can I mention to whom?)
Capitalize words only to highlight an important point or to distinguish a title or heading.
Capitalizing whole sentences is termed as SHOUTING!
Don’t put in returns let it wrap around. Otherwise your message will look a mess on a screen of different width / different font size.
Keep messages short and to the point, but still polite (please thank you, if thats OK etc)
If you need to branch off onto a totally new and different topic then it’s often better to send a new message, which allows the recipient the option of filing it separately.
Find out how to use your spellchecker which should be set to come in automatically when you press send.
Do you know how to send attachments?
Receiving attachments (the only way that viruses can spread by e-mail) if you don’t recognise the sender, or they don’t refer to the attachment in their text, DON’T OPEN IT!!! If it is a virus it could attack your computer as soon as you open it. Either delete it or ask the person what the attachment is.
Avoid public flames - messages sent in anger. It’s really easy to send aggressive messages from behind the safety of your screen. But take some time to cool off and think about it for a while before starting a flame war!
Attaching return receipts to a message can be very useful both in order to be sure that the message has arrived, or for finding out when they received it, but may be considered an invasion of privacy. Never attach a return receipt to a global message!
If you need a reply, tell them when you need it by this allows them to plan.
If you are sent information that doesn’t need a reply, don’t reply except for vital messages in which case the sender will want to know that you received them.
Include enough of the original message to provide a context. Remember that Electronic Mail is not as immediate as a telephone conversation and the recipient may not recall the contents of the original message, especially if he or she receives many messages each day.
Increasingly the convention is to reply *above* the original message, so the reply is immediately visible. But it is also OK to put “reply interleaved below and then put your reply comments after each paragraph of their original message.

Replies

If you are sent information that doesn’t need a reply, don’t reply except for vital messages in which case the sender will want to know that you received them.
Include enough of the original message to provide a context. Remember that Electronic Mail is not as immediate as a telephone conversation and the recipient may not recall the contents of the original message, especially if he or she receives many messages each day.
Increasingly the convention is to reply *above* the original message, so the reply is immediately visible. But it is also OK to put reply interleaved below and then put your reply comments after each paragraph of their original message.
Pay careful attention to where your reply is going to end up: it can be embarrassing for you if a personal message ends up circulated to the whole organisation, and it’s generally annoying for everyone else. On some systems you have a choice of reply to sender or reply to all be careful to select the former!
If you are replying to a message but are changing the subject of the conversation, change the subject heading too. The subject is usually the easiest way to follow the thread of a conversation, so changing the conversation without changing the subject can be confusing and can make filing difficult.
If you receive irrelevant messages or junk from someone in your organisation, reply, asking politely to be taken off their circulation. If you receive junk from outside companies who you have not heard of (spam) then don’t reply this merely confirms to them that your address exists just delete the spam.

Memory Management

Keep messages remaining in your electronic mailbox to a minimum.
Delete your deleted box regularly (about weekly).
Sort files by size and get rid of any very large ones
Sort files by date and get rid of the oldest ones
Sort files by sender and get rid of all but the latest one or two from/to each person.