To Bcc or not to Bcc?

I got an email today where the body of the email was significantly smaller than the addresses in the To field. I was also able to see the email addresses of everyone to whom the email had been sent.

In this case, I know that some people left the company and moved on to greener pastures–sometimes breaking the non-compete clause. I’ll bet they’ll be thrilled to receive an email from their previous employers–who have been known to do such things from time to time.

I get similar emails from people who’ve used email for years and from people who are new to the whole Intraweeb thing. The latter can be excused for not knowing but the former–they know and yet they persist.

It’s so much more elegant to put all the email addresses in the Bcc field and if required, by your email client, put your email address in the To field. The email is sent to everyone but they won’t be able to see the others who received the email and won’t have to scroll down five screens to read your message.

Email is such a wonderful tool but it gives people productivity nightmares because it’s not used properly. While this may seem like a minor irritant, it’s the minor irritants that add up to eat away your time. Bad subject lines, huge attachments, unnecessary forwards–they’re like rats that gnaw away at your time and suddenly you find a chunk of time gone.

Maybe you don’t care, but there are people downstream who do. Maybe.


3 thoughts on “To Bcc or not to Bcc?

  1. Well written. I’ve noticed so many times when people have exposed internally used aliases on company eMails, having their friends on the “To” field as well. A couple of times, it has worked in a disastrous way, with some of them doing a “Reply To All”! As you’ve said, sometimes, it makes sense putting everyone’s name on the “To” field, and most times, on the “Bcc” field. :-)

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