10 Things Never To Put In Email

Yesterday Roger Matus posted the 10 Things Never To Put In Email, at his Death By Email blog.  Here they are:

  1. “I could get into trouble for telling you this, but…”
  2. “Delete this email immediately.”
  3. “I really shouldn’t put this in writing.”
  4. “Don’t tell So-and-So.” Or, “Don’t send this to So-and-So.”
  5. “She/He/They will never find out.”
  6. “We’re going to do this differently than normal.”
  7. “I don’t think I am supposed to know this, but…”
  8. “I don’t want to discuss this in e-mail. Please give me a call.”
  9. “Don’t ask. You don’t want to know.”
  10. “Is this actually legal?”

Electronic documents are increasingly becoming an important aspect of all types of litigation, including criminal cases.  But illegally accessing that information has also become a crime in and of itself – and a federal one at that.  Thus, I’m working on a future post entitled, “101 Ways to Get Into Trouble Using Email.”  In summary, it’s not a good idea to put anything in an email that you wouldn’t be comfortable having displayed to a panel of twelve jurors on a huge screen.

 – John H. Bryan, West Virginia Attorney

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