To reply, or to REPLY ALL

Today, I got an e-mail from somebody needing technical help. It was like somebody changed my job description to IT Support and forgot to tell me, which is nothing out of the ordinary where I work.

Hi, I have a login with ‘Editor’ privileges but can’t import or view images in my groups folders. Please help. Cheers, X

I wasn’t the only one getting the wrong e-mail, proved by the next item in my inbox:

i’d like to know who setup this email address and told people to use this as a support contact.

Yeah, I thought. But what do we do when we find them? Then a third person, the polite opposite:

Please remove me from this thread. This is not meant for me. Thanks.

But soon this was all the e-mail I was getting:

A: Ditto … please
B: It’s not meant for me either. Thanks.
C: Me neither

It might be simpler if the person it was meant for could just speak up instead. But this is the kind of thing that cubicle types like me pounce on whenever we can, since anything is more interesting than our actual jobs. Next came the voice of reason:

It seems the point of all the emails on this are that it went to all the wrong people, myself included. Might I suggest that people assume it was a one-time error and not keep sending emails asking to be removed from the list? It’s only adding fuel to the fire…thanks.

That worker tried to raise the level of e-mail conversation to an afternoon tea in Buckingham Palace, but to no avail. Finally, the only thing that worked — the good old all-caps e-mail of loudness:


I really wanted to reply-all, “I WILL STOP REPLYING ALL NOW,” but I was able to resist the urge.

8 Responses to To reply, or to REPLY ALL

  1. dbay says:

    Please write a humorous essay book filled with your perspectives on work. I will buy it.

  2. karah says:

    So, does work suck, or does it blow?

    Think about it.

  3. Duedecad says:

    I really wanted to reply-all, “I WILL STOP REPLYING ALL NOW,” but I was able to resist the urge.

    Can you forward me the email so I can send this response to everyone on the list from a random web account? Please?

  4. Katie L. says:

    Ooh! Me too! Me too!

  5. Kris says:

    Man, you don’t know how tempted I am to forward that e-mail to EVERYBODY.

    Must . . . not . . . encourage . . . harassment . . .

  6. karah says:

    I’m really sorry you resisted the urge.

  7. Kirsten says:

    Y’all are all sick puppies. Tell me, do you all just work to make yourselves crazy or do any of you have kids yet? The opportunities for insanity are endless. When they become teens, the fun truly begins.

  8. […] happened to me (noted here). And it happened to (yes, believe it) the U.S. State Department, where so many people replied all […]

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