Cc and Bcc

It was business emails day in class—how electronic business letters can effectively be used in the workplace. My students are all familiar with how email works; they've been using it for some time.

But emails per se and effective business communications are two different animals.

One is of the wilds (the kind they know).  Just type your thoughts at random, with no regard for format or rules.

And the other is of the circus, under a tent, properly trained and tamed—it does exactly what it should do: move and make the reader react favorably (the kind they need to learn).

When I started discussing Cc and Bcc, they gave me glazed, unfocused eyes that said “hohum.”

That was when I realized that these kids were born long after carbon paper had gone extinct.

So I went through the whole song-and-dance routine. Cc, I said, stands for "carbon copy.” Those listed in the Cc: field of a message will receive a copy of that message. All other recipients will be able to see who received a copy of the message. Cc is useful when you wish to share a message with someone but are not requesting that he replies. 

Bcc, I explained, stands for "blind carbon copy." The difference between Cc and Bcc is that Bcc recipients are invisible to all of the other recipients of the message (including other Bcc recipients). It is useful when you don't wish to share your recipients' email addresses with everyone who receives your message.

They gave me eyes that pop when light comes back after a long brown out. 

Funny how I thought all along that the kids of this electronics generation should be teaching me instead of me teaching them.

Well, I have been breathing far longer than they have. The blessing of being a teacher is having the opportunity to share the grace of experience earned through eons to a wide-eyed captive audience.   

No comments: