(un)professional e-mail skills -- was Re: JOB: Linux System Administrator

Stuart Jansen sjansen at buscaluz.org
Thu Sep 16 23:40:07 MDT 2010

On Thu, 2010-09-16 at 22:58 -0600, Michael Torrie wrote:
> Almost without exception when someone in the management hierarchy
> replies to my email with top-posting it signifies that he or she
> did not read anything I wrote and is just replying to what he or
> she thought I said.

Putting an image of a Web page in a Word document and attaching it to an
email in order to share a login url. Submitting a bid to a Linux company
as an MS Publisher file. (Publisher?!) Requiring all attachments to be
zipped but have a zipp extension so that they'll make it past the
corporate anti-virus filter. Treating the CC: field like a corporate
version of Katamari Damacy. Multi-paragraph emls wrtn lik txt msgs. lol!
I've seen plenty of silly email behavior, as has everyone who deals with
corporate email.


If I could eliminate one thing it would be top posting. Far too often 
what could have been a simple exchange requiring a couple messages turns
into a multi-day, sometimes even multi-week affair attempting to ask the
same set of questions multiple ways until they're all answered or
rendered irrelevant.

I've tried many solutions.

(1) Numbering topics.

(2) Limiting important content to single sentence paragraphs.

(3) Sending multiple message, one per new thread of discussion.

(4) Etc.

While it sometimes helps a little, it's a amazing how stubbornly some
people insist on replying without reading and understanding the entire
message first.

Stuart Jansen <sjansen at buscaluz.org>

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