Mass CC vs Reply All

I’m not entirely sure which offender is worse – the person who sends an email out to fifty friends and thinks it’s a good idea to put all their names in plain view in the “to:” or “cc:” fields; or the person who, upon receiving this mass email, decides it’s a fantastic idea to click “reply all” as though those fifty people really want to receive another email with a banal one-line reply.

Obviously this is an old rant, but one that clearly still hasn’t penetrated the consciousnesses of those with an exiguous knowledge of technology and its pertinent etiquette.

Which is worse? It’s not quite a chicken and egg situation here – quite simply if no one mass cc’d like this, then no one could be tempted to click ‘reply all’ in the first place. Still, I don’t think that lessens the crime that is clicking ‘reply all’. Seriously, think about it before you send that unimaginative and pointless reply to fifty people you’ve never met.

Perhaps we should blame the persistence of such things upon the modern fascination with sharing all amongst extended social groups, which ‘connect’ wholly unconnected people in an overly familiar way. Perhaps before the meteoric rise of these social entities, the message was being slowly received and such mass mailings, or their equally evil reply-all siblings, were fading out. Or, well, perhaps not.

I tend to write a short reply (single) to the sender, saying that it’s generally best to avoid such displays of all your extended friend’s email addresses, not knowing which nefarious member of this group will decide the time is ripe for a wonderful harvest of new fodder for their mailing list, their desperate need to further the expansion of their social networks, or whatever opprobrious plans they may have. Although I simplify my message a little.

I hope I do not directly offend anyone by writing this. It is, I assure you, all said in good humour 😉