Posted: May 21, 2016
2 minute read

Signatures

I happened to stumble upon an NY Times article from about 10 years ago where the topic is e-mail signatures and brush-offs. Now I am once again procrastinating on simple nonsensical issues like e-mail signatures.

I used to have e-mail signatures set up in all my e-mail clients and systems. This was convenient at some point in my life. These days the vast amount of e-mails I send and get are much more personal and informal. Notes about looking forward to hearing from someone are weird and there is no need to post all your contact details in the e-mail signature.

I am usually signing e-mails with “Regards, [Initial/First name]” and this should be okay in most cases. I noticed a typo in an e-mail sent by someone recently to a group I am a part of and this issue has been on my mind since then. A simple typographical error in a signature - replace the letter “g” with “t” in my preferred signature and it gets a negative undertone.

I have a selection of good-byes for short replies: love, hugs, cheers - depending on the person and context. I don’t like to use “Thanks” a lot, thanking someone for no reason just does not seem to make sense. I have not decided on using just “Best” yet. I feel like it should be a no-go - it doesn’t sound genuine. Best what? Cucumbers? Maybe signing with just my name or an initial is the solution? Unless I’m making a specific request or am truly thankful for something.

I am an Estonian schooled in British English. I still remember some of the etiquettes about “Dear Mr. …” and the “Yours sincerely” I learned in my secondary English lessons. I feel the importance of speaking and writing good English in an international working environment. But formal communication is another topic for another day.

The topic is not new and the same kind of mistake has been made in the past causing laughs for many people.


“Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” - George Santayana

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Tags:
  • rant
  • social behavior
  • email
  • etiquette