A Simple Guide to Email

A Simple Guide to Email

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Each book in the "Simple Guide" series provides a subject at a basic level. Only key definitions are discussed, and the detail is kept to the average reader's requirements. Background, history and theory are left out, and only useful and popular tasks are discussed.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 160 pages
  • 147 x 210 x 7mm | 214g
  • Prentice Hall
  • Upper Saddle River, United States
  • 0130608661
  • 9780130608666

Table of contents

ContentsWhy you should read this book xiPart 1Writing email 11 Why email? 3When to use email - and when not to 4Reasons to be careful 4Why writing matters 7What's the message? 8What's the purpose? 10Summary 142 Who will read it? 15Written conversation or digital letter? 16Greetings 17Sign-offs 19Seeing through their eyes 20Summary 233 How should you write it? 25Writing is not an add-on 26Don't translate 27Writing is not talking 29How to be immediate and direct 30Take a fresh look 33Summary 344 What to do differently in email 35Brevity 36Layout 37Is email writing 'looser' than normal writing? 40Emphasis? 41Smileys 42The elements of an email 43The 'Subject' line 45The 'From' line 47The value of your name 49Signatures 50Threads 51Summary 565 Getting it right 57Does it matter? 58The things everyone gets wrong 59Tired words and phrases 69Letting go 74Part 2Living with email 756 Will it get there? 77 How email works 78Domains 80The language of email 81What could go wrong 83How can you know for sure? 867 The tools you use 89The components of email 90Different systems 91Your choices 92Desktop systems 93Web-based systems 99Features of different programs 104Some other useful services 105Summary 1098 Coping with the email avalanche 111Top ten reasons for email overload 112Spam 113Viruses 117Chain letters, hoaxes, jokes and urban myths 119Newsletters and circulars 121Work-related junk 121Taking action 122Folders and filters 123Filtering out spam 1269 Privacy, porngraphy and the law 127Who's watching? 128Interception 131Secrecy 132Glossary 135Abbreviations you might find in emails 142Index 145Why you should read this bookI was going to call this book 'A Simple Guide to Writing Email', until I noticed that most books on email have only half a chapter about writing stuck somewhere near the back, and that most of the people I talked to didn't think of email as having anything to do with writing. But while most people don't think of it as writing, they don't have a clear idea of what else it might be: it's not technology, it's not conversation, it's just email.And of course they're right. Email is a completely new and unique medium - a form of written communication that feels like spoken conversation, a form that bridges the gulf between letters and telephone calls. And as with any new medium, email has created a whole new kind of communication, with new conventions, demands and rules. Despite this, using email still means writing email and, whether you like it or not, making your emails effective means using words effectively. This does not require you to adopt an ornate, literary style - rather the opposite: it calls for a well-judged, conversational tone that gets the job done in the most pleasant way possible. And getting the job done means understanding the medium and knowing what it can do. This is why I have divided the book into two parts. The first part deals with the words you use, which depend on what you want your email to do. Is it just a quick message between friends? Is it part of a serious business discussion? Are you trying to persuade, inform or entertain? Are you sending it to one person or many? Is it likely to be forwarded, printed out or passed round? Could it, as the police caution goes, be used in evidence against you?The second part of the book looks at how to live with email: how to deal with the enormous amount most people get, how to sort the junk from the important stuff, how to take advantage of your email software, and what you can do to increase the chances of your email being delivered.All sorts of people, and big corporations too, have come spectacularly unstuck by misusing email. You probably remember Clare Swires, a young woman who wrote an intimate note to her boyfriend, who then boastfully sent it on to friends. Within minutes the message was being relayed round the world, to the embarrassed regret of the two people involved, who lost their jobs and became celebrities for all the wrong reasons.On the other hand, the reward for mastering email is nothing less than taking control of your communication: you can reach anyone, whether they're in or not, whether they know you or not, whether they're awake or not. You can liberate your communication from time and distance, control the impression you make, and talk to twenty people as easily as to one.I'm an email enthusiast because it makes my life - socially, creatively and commercially - incomparably easier. It can do the same for you, if you know what you are doing. This book is a guide for all those who want to reap the full reward of email while avoiding the pitfallsAcknowledgementsWe are grateful to the following for permission to reproduce copyright material:Figures 7.1 and 7.6 screen shots reprinted by permission of Microsoft Corporation; Figure 7.2 Netscape Communicator browser window (c) 1999 Netscape Communications Corporation. Used with permission. Netscape Communications has not authorized, sponsored, endorsed, or approved this publication and is not responsible for its content; Figure 7.3 AOL screen shot (c) 2001 America Online, Inc. Used with permission; Figure 7.4 Eudora screen shot reprinted by permission of QUALCOMM, Inc; Figure 7.7 Hushmail screen shot reprinted by permission of Hush Communications Corporation. Hush product names and logos are trademarks of Hush Communications Corporation. All rights reserved;While every effort has been made to trace the owners of copyright material, in a few cases this has proved impossible and we take this opportunity to offer our apologies to any copyright holders whose rights we have unwittingly infringed.
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