EMail Basics


Short for electronic mail, a way to send messages over the Internet. Sent messages are stored in electronic mailboxes on the Internet. To see if you have any mail, you have to check your electronic mailbox, although many systems alert you when mail is received (You have mail!!). After reading your mail, you can store it, forward it to other users, or delete it.

Any time you see this sign, @, you know that you are looking at an email address, not to be mistaken with a web page address. It is NOT an email address UNLESS it has this @ sign. You can type this sign (@) by holding down the SHIFT key and pressing the number 2 on the keyboard. If the address of the person you are emailing is not written exactly right, your mail will be undeliverable, much like writing a regular mail address wrong. The post office will not know where to deliver it if you write the wrong zip code or street address. Same with email. So you have to be very careful sending email to someone.

There are several free email services that will give you a mailbox and storage on the Internet. When you sign up, you decide on a Username or ID and that becomes the beginning of your email address (for instance, if you choose “Mary” as your username, your email address will be –with “whatever” standing for the email service you choose). You then also set up a password that will insure only you are able to access your email. YOU MUST REMEMBER THESE TO GET YOUR EMAIL, SO WRITE THEM DOWN!!

A popular service that a lot of people use is offered by Yahoo mail and is located at So, if Mary used this, her address would be “”. It is a “Web-based” email service. This means that since your mail is stored on the Internet, you can access it from any computer anywhere, as long as they have Internet access. Many Email services, such as Hotmail or Yahoo mail require that you sign in and check your mail within a 30 day period in order for your account to remain active, or they will cancel it. Email is a great way to stay in touch with friends, family and contacts. It is also necessary to sign up and register at a lot of websites that you may wish to visit, as well a good way to receive information that you may request online.

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Common Email Terms:

  • Inbox: Where your both new and old messages are kept."In" "Box"
  • Junk/Bulk Mail Folder: Junk mail, Spam, things like newsletters and advertising are usually put in this folder
  • Spam: Advertisements, people trying to sell you stuff, people trying to get you to go to their website, scams. Good rule to remember, there really isn’t ANYTHING free on the Internet. IF IT LOOKS TO GOOD TO BE TRUE, THEN IT PROBABLY IS!!
  • CC: means Carbon Copy. You would use this if you wanted to send the same message to more than one person (a party invitation for example), you would add additional addresses in this field (box).
  • BCC: means Blind Carbon Copy. When you send an email to more than one person, all of their addresses show on the top of the email. A lot of times, people don’t want their address to become public, or you might not want to show all the addresses to everybody else, so you would use this field. It hides the addresses of the people you are sending it to.
  • Contacts/Address: This is where you save people’s email addresses, just like a phone or address book.
  • Block Sender: You use this option to block future message from a particular contactl. Good way to cut down on Spam. You click the check box next to the message and then click “Block”.
  • Drafts: This is where you save messages you are working on, but not ready to send yet.

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