Email and Perception, Privacy, Copyright: Email Etiquette 101

“Prioritizing Privacy and Courtesy: Essentials of Email Etiquette”

Editor’s Note: This blog is part of our Email Etiquette 101 series which includes Email and Perception, Privacy, Copyright.

Understanding a recipient’s rights to privacy and copyright is an essential component of email etiquette.

  • Choose your email address wisely. It will determine, in part, how they perceive you.
  • Try not to make assumptions when it comes to email. Always ask for clarification before you react.
  • Posting or forwarding of private email is copyright infringement — not to mention downright rude. You need permission from the author first!
  • Even though it isn’t right, emails are forwarded to others. Keep this in mind when typing about emotional or controversial topics.
  • When there is a misunderstanding by email, don’t hesitate to pick up the old-fashioned telephone to work things out!
  • Know that how you type and the efforts you make or don’t make will indicate what is important to you and if you are an educated courteous person.
  • If you forward an email that turns out to be a hoax, have the maturity to send an apology to follow up email to the recipients. 
  • When filling out a contact form on a website, do so carefully and with clarity so your request is taken seriously.
  • If a friend puts your email address in the To: field with others you do not know, ask them to no longer expose your address to strangers without your permission.


Email communication and perception, while quick and efficient, brings with it a responsibility to uphold the rights and feelings of its recipients. Proper understanding of privacy, copyright, and a dash of empathy can elevate our email interactions from mere exchanges to meaningful connections. As we continue to unravel the layers of email etiquette in this series, let’s always remember to infuse respect and thoughtfulness in every message we send.

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Keep reading our Email Etiquette 101 series:
Sending Emails
Formatting Emails
Email Attachments
To, From, CC, Bcc, RR, Subject
Email Forwarding

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