The Email Pet Peeves That Really Tick Us Off

emailTwo people are sitting not five feet from one another in the same office, but still feel compelled to email each other all day. Can you say "time suck?" The syndrome is one of the more frustrating aspects of internal emails, according to an informal poll of PR News' readers.

The query, which we distributed on both our Facebook and Twitter accounts, struck a chord with our audience.

Perhaps that’s because internal communications is so vital to ensuring that everyone in-house is on the same page when it comes to brand reputation and enhancing corporate culture. Effective email communications is the first step toward sustaining those goals.

With that in mind, here are some of the most frustrating mistakes PR folks see in internal emails— and an opportunity to remedy them.

Lisa Blinn: Distribution list is too long, actionable items are unclear, errors in grammar and spelling.

Dre Davis: NOT removing the email thread below.

Pauline France: When people ask about something that was clearly outlined throughout an e-mail thread, making it obvious they didn't read/scroll down

Julia Hendrickson: Poor grammar and misspelled words. Internal or external - your brand should be represented in its highest form. Including the written word.

Jo Hughes: Reply to all

Amy Widdowson Mains: Passive aggressive statements. Lack of assignments. Snark.

Skyler E. Nimmons: Your vs. you're

Michael Vari: Not actually reading the original email and therefore not responding effectively or answering the questions put forth.

What do you think should be added to the list?

Follow Matthew Schwartz: @mpsjourno1

Comments Off


About Matthew Schwartz

Group Editor, PR News: Matthew Schwartz is group editor of PR News, the leading source of trends, how-to content and best practices for PR professionals. Matthew leads the editorial strategy for PR News’ premium content products—including its weekly newsletter—and for its digital presence. Matthew was editor of PR News from 2003-2005. Prior to returning to PR News, Matthew was a reporter for Crain’s BtoB and Media Business magazines, where he covered business marketers and media companies. He was also editor of BMA Buzz, a biweekly email newsletter covering B2B marketing, advertising and social media, and contributing writer to Advertising Age Custom. Matthew has helped to launch blogs on behalf of ZoomInfo and direct marketing agency The Kern Organization. He also spent a few years in cable-news precincts, working as a writer/producer at CNN and Fox News Channel.

Deals of the Week

Get $150 Off PR News' Big 4 Conference

Join PR News at the Hyatt Regency in San Francisco on August 6 for the Big 4 Conference, where expert communicators will share in-depth case studies from their Twitter, Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram strategies.

Use code “150” at checkout to save $150 on the regular rate.

Get $50 off PR News' Social Media Guidebook


This 11-chapter guidebook focuses on communicating in a mobile and social world, winning the attention of audiences, social media listening strategy and technology, social media measurement and so much more.

Use code “50off” at checkout.

Save $100 on a PR News Subscription



Let PR News become your weekly, go-to resource for the latest PR trends, case studies and tip sheets. Topics covered include visual storytelling, social media, measurement, crisis management and media relations.

Use code “SUBDEAL” at checkout.

Comments are closed.