The Reply To All option has a purpose. And, in most instances it is helpful. When you are having a conversation amongst a group of people. Maybe it's about a business decision. Or, maybe it's about where to go to lunch. Maybe it's about an upcoming trip and what the group wants to do while you are out of town. Maybe it's coordinating the weekend's plans. In these instances Reply To All is the key to success at group organization!
The Reply To All button is also sometimes misused. Occasionally I receive an email response (so does the entire office) telling me something that was really only intended for the person who sent the email. Often, it's just annoying. Nothing I need to worry about so I roll my eyes, shake my head while muttering 'Reply To All' and delete the email.
The worst is when someone sends out a mass email and someone replies to all with something completely inappropriate for the audience.
Case in point.
Several (many,many) years ago a co-worker sent out an announcement that they were having a baby!! This exciting email was sent to everyone on our team, our boss, our boss's boss, our President, the receptionist. Plus all of his family and friends. You name it they got it. In actuality, they were adopting a dog! I sent him a 'reply' note of congrats along with several reasons on why I love dogs. No surprise that I went on and on about how much I cherish my pooch, Sam.
Twenty minutes later a 'reply to all' came through. His friend wished him well and then went on to explain that often the manner in which the baby was conceived plays a huge impact on the personality of the baby. He then proceeded to highlight that in this case it must have been...
Holy Crap! I still can't handle it when I think about it today. I could not believe that his friend literally just sent this to our entire office. For me it was one of those loud, eyes-watering, stomach-hurting laughs at my desk. For my co-worker, it was probably one of those moments when you hang your head in embarrassment, look back and wish you had sent it to your intended distro list under a BCC so Reply To All was never ever ever an option.
I wonder how the