• Use the sharing and listening guidelines for email discussions.
  • Use descriptive subject lines. If you change the subject, change the subject line.
  • Be brief.
  • Think before you hit send. Email, like a letter, is forever, and much easier to save and share.
  • Respect others’ privacy and copyright by not forwarding or quoting from the list.
  • Quote as little as possible of the message you are replying to; enough so that people know what you are replying to, but no more.
  • Remember that a lot of tone and expression are lost in communications that aren’t face-to-face. It is much easier to be misunderstood in an email.
  • If you are upset, angry, or offended, take a break before replying.  It is also much easier to be sarcastic, mean, or belligerent, or to sound that way, in email.
  • Use the members list for only WFUU business, announcements, and discussions.  Don’t advertise. Don’t post links to businesses, other organizations, blogs, or sites unless they are relevant to the discussion.
  • Don’t post chain letters, petitions, or virus warnings – no matter how appealing the cause or scary the warning.
  • Post messages to a list only if you personally know the information in it is true. Check information passed on to you with or – or just cut and paste a sentence into a Google search and see what comes up.
  • Reply only if you have something to add; saying  “Me too!” or “I agree!” adds to the number of messages without adding substance
  • Send a private message to the sender if it is not of interest to the group: thanks, “me, too”, a personal question, an off-topic comment or question.
  • Include a signature at the bottom with your name and email address; most email programs let you do this automatically.
  • Send messages in plain text, without HTML formatting.

Here are several policies and guidelines from UU churches that are worth reading:

A UUA article on email

UUA Email List Policy

Eugene, Oregon

Marin, California