Netiquette - Avoiding Wordiness
In my first book (see above and below), the preponderance of brevity in emails was often discussed and lamented! But emails which are overly long are also a Netiquette issue. Below is an excerpt form the book which discusses this very topic.
If an email sender can master the right balance between wordiness and content paucity, their massages will stand out and avoid being misunderstood.
Chapter XVI: Advanced Netiquette
This report, by its very length, defends itself against the risk of being read.
During the course of a busy day, receiving a long and detailed email is seldom welcomed. Worse still, the longer a correspondence is, the less likely it is to be read. There also is a distinct possibility that even if it is read, it may not be read completely or with full attention.
If a long email is necessary, the proper Netiquette should be followed to ensure readability: for example, the early introduction of a major topic and a brief explanation for the need to have a long message. It may also be best to have the correspondence divided and sent separately.
One long-term negative factor of sending a long or verbose message is that it may set a bad precedent in which the recipient will not immediately or ever read future correspondence.
Certain phrases can contribute to make sentences less clear as well as providing more verbosity. Among these are the following:
- Kind of
- Sort of
- For all intents and purposes
- Due to the fact
- Basically, actually
- As previously stated
- Generally speaking
- In particular
- Generally, in general
An appositive is defined (by reference.com) as a word or phrase to identify, amplify, or rename the preceding word. These can be unnecessarily obvious. Samples of appositives that add no value are shown below:
This is an example of an appositive that provides unnecessary identification.
George Washington, the first president of the United States and a founding father…
George Washington, the first president…
For a great satire on email, please see the following:
Good Netiquette And A Green Internet To All!
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In addition to this blog, Netiquette IQ has a website with great assets which are being added to on a regular basis. I have authored the premiere book on Netiquette, “Netiquette IQ - A Comprehensive Guide to Improve, Enhance and Add Power to Your Email". My new book, “You’re Hired! Super Charge Your Email Skills in 60 Minutes. . . And Get That Job!” has just been published and will be followed by a trilogy of books on Netiquette for young people. You can view my profile, reviews of the book and content excerpts at:
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Additionally, I am the president of Tabula Rosa Systems, a “best of breed” reseller of products for communications, email, network management software, security products and professional services. Also, I am the president of Netiquette IQ. We are currently developing an email IQ rating system, Netiquette IQ, which promotes the fundamentals outlined in my book.
Over the past twenty-five years, I have enjoyed a dynamic and successful career and have attained an extensive background in IT and electronic communications by selling and marketing within the information technology marketplace.