Monday, August 27

BCC Please

I blew one of my free passes yesterday in my challenge to post every day for 30 days or have to give $100 to the Romney campaign. 1 strike. It shall not happen again today!

I know that my posts are often rants about my personal pet peeves...this is no exception. Question: Why can't folks grasp the concept of BCC (blind carbon copy)? I cannot tell you how many emails a day I get with giant lists of other people's email addresses. It isn't just the fact that on my Blackberry I have to scroll through the endless list - although that is indeed tiresome (and starting to wear out another trackball!). It is really rude to share your friends' email addresses with everyone that you want to share "The Irish Friendship Blessing" or "How Shania Twain got cancer from a water bottle she left in her car" or "How to separate an egg with a water bottle (hopefully non-cancerous).

Do not get me wrong - I enjoyed receiving the email itself (especially the egg separating one...that was cool!) and I'm glad that I have friends who send me generous angels who will bless me with cash and perfect mates if I send it on to 11 of my closest friends (I never do...I hate emotional blackmail email...but usually the blackmail comes after some sort of lovely thought that I DO enjoy)! It is the careless spreading of my email address to people who I don't know.

I received an email from my eye doctor's office last week inviting me to vote for him in a local magazine for "Best Bedside Manner" - once again, not offended by the email itself...he really is a fantastic optometrist and I am happy to spread that word far and wide. But his staff mistakenly sent out some of the email batches as CC instead of BCC. So in this case - I had about 50 of his patients email addresses (and you know, with a lot of email addresses...the names are not hard to figure out). I emailed him and he not only promptly apologized to me - he later sent out an email (properly BCC) to the clients who were affected and apologized to them as well. That shows real class.

If you are interested in being kind (and protective) to the people who you email - here is all you have to do to use BCC when emailing, forwarding, etc. in several of the most popular email interfaces.

If you are using Outlook - just put the addresses on the BCC line instead of the "To" line. If you don't see that line, click Options, Show Fields and then BCC.

In Hotmail - once you've opened a new message or hit forward on the hilarious video of cats flying around the room....look in the upper right hand corner and click on "Show CC and BCC" - then put the addresses of your victims in the BCC line. (no, you don't have to put a recipient in the "To" line).

In Gmail - once you've started to compose, you'll see the Add BCC button directly under the "To" line.

I understand that AOL's BCC button is easy to find...I wouldn't know, never used AOL! Thank you for listening to my latest rant. Next rant will probably be about chopping the extra 14 headers off when you forward the National Friendship Day email. I'm sure glad you're my friend - but I'd feel even more friendly if I didn't have to dig so far down to know why!

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