One of the keys to being an efficient business writer is having tools that work for you. I need help with one of my tools, and I am asking for your advice.
Here is the problem: When I get email from clients and others, my Norton anti-virus program often puts this phrase in brackets in front of the subject line: Norton AntiSpam. When I reply, my response is preceded by that useless notice, so my reply subject looks like this:
RE: [Norton AntiSpam] Writing Assessment
My goal is to communicate–not to advertise Norton, signal to readers that their message looked like spam, or make my own message seem less than professional. So to eliminate [Norton AntiSpam], I delete it from each reply. This step wastes my time.
This Norton thing can also lead to my looking foolish. Using my grammar and spelling checker, I once accidentally corrected it to read [Norton Antis Pam]. I don’t know whether my reader noticed that flawed subject, but I know how I felt when I saw it in my Sent Items.
If that is not enough, all messages that begin [Norton AntiSpam] get alphabetized by the bracket–[–not by the actual subject! This inefficiency slows me down even more.
Can you help me please with tips or guidance? If you know a good way to banish these pointless messages, please share it. Or if you have a suggestion on how to seamlessly delete them from all my replies, that would be lovely. Please comment.