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TECH TIPS:  Email Basics

Here’s some interesting statistics.  Around 81% of consumers say they go online to send and receive e-mail multiple times daily.  The average consumer receives 308 e-mails per week.  Here are some email basics you should know.

There are basically 2 ways to do email:

     ►  web email – that’s using email on the web with services like Hotmail or Yahoo.  This is known as web-based email.

     ►  using an email client (application) like Outlook Express or Eudora.  This is known as POP3 email.

Whether you use web-based email or an email client, both methods use the same procedures for sending, receiving, and storing email.  The good thing about using an email client is that you don’t have to be on the internet to read your email or to compose an email or to manage your email (sort it, delete it, make new folders, etc.).  Of course, with web-based email or with an email client like Outlook Express, you do have to get online to send and receive email.

OK – so here are some of the basics of email.

When you receive an email, you can do several things.

     ►  You can Reply to the email (click on Reply).  This will send a reply to the person who sent you the email.  Note:  If there was an attachment with the email, you will not send the attachment back.

     ►  You can Reply All.  If the original email was sent to multiple people, you can send a reply to everyone who received it.  Note:  If there was an attachment with the email, you will not send the attachment back.

     ►  You can Forward the email.  You would use this option if you want to send the original email on to someone else.  Note:  If there was an attachment with the original, you will send that attachment on to the person you are forwarding to.

     ►  You can store the email in a folder.  You can create folders with names and then as you receive emails, you can move them out of the Inbox into the folder for storage and safe-keeping.  I have created 20 folders to sort and store my many emails I receive everyday.

You can delete the email.  If you don’t want it anymore, just get rid of it permanently by deleting it.  Don’t forget to Empty the Deleted Folder to actually delete those messages.

When you send an email:

     ►  You can send it to one person.  Just type the email address in the TO box

     ►  If you want to send the email to a second person, type their email address in the CC box (CC stands for Carbon Copy).  OR – you can type the second person’s email address in the TO box using a comma and space to separate that address from the first address.  You may put as many addresses in the TO box or in the CC box as you want – just separate each address with a comma and space.  I once received an email with around 150 addresses in the To and CC box.

     ►  You can type in an email address in the BCC box.  This will send the email to that address without letting the people in the To or CC boxes know.

     ►  You can send an attachment with your email, like a picture or a document

Email Formats

     ►  You can send an email as HTML email (sometimes called rich text) or plain text email.  The difference is that with HTML email, you can format your text – like bold it, or add color, or add pictures to it, or add bullets, or do many of the other formatting options you see in the formatting toolbar.  With plain text email, you cannot do any formatting – you can only use just plain old text.  Some people don’t like to get HTML email because that’s how you can get viruses – you can’t get viruses through plain text mail unless you click on an attachment that carries a virus.  (Be careful with what attachments you click on).
 

     ►  You can receive your email as HTML email or as plain text email.  In Outlook Express, click on the Tools menu, then click on Options, then click on the Read tab, then select “Read all messages in plain text.”  Some people like to read the email messages in plain text – you can’t get viruses through plain text mail unless you click on an attachment that carries a virus.  (Be careful with what attachments you click on).  (Didn’t I just say something like that?)

Email Options

There are lots of options that can be set for your email account.  They are usually pretty self-explanatory.  Go to your Options page or section and read through all the options.  Choose the options that you like best.

Email Netiquette

Always use good “email netiquette.”  Here is a site you can go to that has the “Top 10 Most Important Rules Of Email Netiquette.

http://email.about.com/cs/netiquettetips/tp/core_netiquette.htm

Last – but not least – email is great.  But is can be harmful!  Never click on links in an email you aren’t sure of.  There are a lot of people out there trying to deceive you and you may get something installed on your computer that you don’t want.

 

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Lyon County Government Center  •  607 W. Main St.  •  Marshall, MN 56258  •  (507) 537-7046

E-Mail:    Marshall Adult Education

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