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Sunday, July 19, 2009

Blind Copy

It is really an innocuous little feature, found on most e-mail systems today. I use Microsoft Outlook for work and at home. It's there, of course. I'm talking about the feature that allows me to send a "blind copy" to someone. In other words, I can tell someone the same thing I'm telling you --- without you knowing that I did it.

I have to confess, I've used this feature for years. Others have too - to blind copy me on communications they were sending to someone else. But lately I've been more observant of the circumstances.

Someone will send me a memo and show copies to others. Then I'll get that same memo forwarded from yet another party (who wasn't listed on the original distribution list).

I have to say it is not a good feeling. Rather it seems to add a sinister dimension to the communication - as if someone were throwing you under the bus (so to speak).

So what's really going on here? Is it okay to use the blind copy feature on e-mails? The Bible tells us to love our neighbor as we would love ourselves. In other words, we should love others exactly the way that we would want to be loved. Somehow I have trouble imagining that I'd ever be glad about being the party who was blind to the copying. And let's be clear, when I use the blind copy feature, that's what I'm doing --- blinding the recipient(s) to the fact that I'm copying others on the same email.

Could there be an intent here that is loving? Is there anything that is honorable about intentionally blinding someone to some aspect of my communication? I seriously don't think so. Perhaps we would all do well to examine our motives when we're blind copying someone.

I can say this much, I can't see myself using the blind copy feature on Microsoft Outlook anymore. There are just too many questions!

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