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Blind Copy Your Friends?

I used to think that the use of the “Blind Copy” — sending an email to someone that the other recipients don’t see as copied — was impolite. I thought I was being deceptive. It seems, however, that in some cases it is not only not impolite, it is considered proper email etiquette.

Here is a scenario:

You wish to send an email — an invitation, information, pictures, a joke — to a group of your friends and family. If you put all of the email addresses in the “To” field, everyone who receives the email will be able to see the email addresses of the other recipients. While this might not seem harmful, you have just given everyone in that group some email addresses they might not have had, ones they can now add to their lists for their own business and/or personal use.

Rather, you should address the email to yourself (put your email address in the “To” field, really, the computer won’t mind), and put all of the recipients’ addresses in the Blind Copy (Bcc) field. This way, everyone you wish to receive the email will receive it, but will not be privy to the information about the other recipients.

Of course, there are many scenarios in which you do wish your recipients to see each other, and you should address the email accordingly.

Please consider the “Bcc” option when appropriate. Your friends and family will thank you for not sharing their information, and especially for not making them scroll past all the other addresses!