Email

Q. ” I get these virus warnings from my friends that request that I pass them to everybody I know.  Sometimes I wonder if they are really valid”.

A.  You are right to wonder.  They are “never valid” and they in themselves are a simple form of virus.  Just think if you only have 50 people in your system and you send this along to all those people asking them for forward them to all their 50 friends etc etc.  In only 3 hops we are looking at 125,000 emails being sent that only cause frustration.  This is how the sicko’s like to choke the system.  Please NEVER NEVER do it.  Yes I am trying to shout to make my point!!!

Q. “ I get chain type letters from very good friends asking me to pass along for luck or love or some other premise.  It seems like it can’t hurt to play along “just in case””??

Q.” I received a special note re “signs of a stroke”.  It made such good sense I felt it was important to pass it along to all my friends”.

A.  The same arithmetic works with this type of junk.  It just chokes the system and no Microsoft will not donate $1.00 or anything else when you pass it along.  It is just another stunt by the sicko’s out there who start this junk. 

Please DO NOT FORWARD Anything that asks you to forward it.  If your are curious do a quick search using the key words in the note and you will soon discover the details of the hoax.  Please let these things stop at your computer.  You can educate the sender by sending him/her a link to the truth and perhaps stopping them from doing this in the future. For some serious information on Hoax type emails just click here. This site has more than you ever wanted to know and hopefully it will wake you up

Q.  “Our resident Geek keeps harping about using the BCC field in my email when I am sending notices to a group of people.  What’s this about”?

A.  To start off with – privacy should be reason enough.  He or she may not want their address broadcast to all your friends.  If you use the BCC field then each person only sees their own address.

Then there is the email that requests an answer and somebody always hits the “answer all” button to tell you that “I will be at the hairdresser that morning but will call you later”.  The whole darn list does not care.  Please do not ANSWER ALL

Then there is the potential for name harvesting.  Each time your email address is placed on someone else’s system it ups the chances that some scab/hacker/spammer/scum bag will harvest your name or even use that system as a robot and spread a virus directly from that system to every email contained there. 

Q. ” I do not see this BCC place to put these extra addresses”. 

A.  In your email program go to the place where you actually start a letter or note.  On the very top of the page you should see a few  things like file, edit, view, format – etc etc.

Click on view and there should be an option there for “all headers”.  Just click on the box and now you should have both the CC and the BCC fields showing.  Any addresses you put in the BCC box will not show to anyone but the recipient.  If the recipient clicks to reply all it will only come to you!

Q.  That’s all very nice but what do I put in the To: box?

A.  Lets say you are sending a note to a bunch of friends about your recent trip.   Create a simple email address to yourself such as Friends and Family using your own email address as the actual address behind the name.  sally@abcemail.com.   You  put this in the To: box and drop any or all of your friends and family in the BCC: box.    It will look more professional and will be much safer for all concerned.  Play with it a bit just put your new address in the To: box and your regular address in the BCC box and see how it all looks when you get it and how easy it is.

Q.  “There are some neat programs that allow you to create an invitation to a birthday or special event and then it monitors the replies.  Is there any problem with using these”.

A.  This comes back to the “free lunch” thing.  I go nuts when I receive one of these invites because it means that my email address has been given by a “friend” to yet another advertizing/name grabbing/viral email – web site.  Some of these sites may be legitimate but their main purpose is collecting LIVE email addresses to use for advertising purposes.  NEVER NEVER share someone else’s email address with anyone or any site without the express permission of the owner. 

There is one more pet peeve that needs to be said here!
I am referring to the MF Virus.  A friend recently called it the most constant and most annoying “virus” of all.  MF of course refers to “mindless forwarding” of useless stuff that somebody just sent you.  Please keep it.  I don’t want it, I don’t need it, I don’t care, and I already have enough of my own crap to deal with.  Again remember “ALL” dire warnings are hoaxes and the rest is just more junk.  Please do not be an MF’er.  Your friends will stay your friends that way.   (do I sound cranky?)  good cuz I are!