Not the Purpose of the Sender Line

A surprisingly large number of students I have dealt with in Korea apparently do not understand the purpose of the “Sender” line in an email. Thus they don’t enter their names in the email system, but rather input all kinds of other things: brief quotes in Korean from books they like, or random English words like “nicelips”, or “misty”, or “lovely”, or “nicegirl”. Okay, a majority of them also have the good graces to begin their email with, “Hi teacher, this is ________,” at this point, inserting some randomly-determined romanized form of their names. But still, I imagine it would be frustrating to have to deal with mass amounts of email from younger people — say, on a mailing list — when the name on the Subject Line and the name within the email differs — and when the cutesy content in the Subject Line changes regularly in the course of weeks or months.

2 thoughts on “Not the Purpose of the Sender Line

  1. Hear, hear! I have to deal with this often from people in my department (mind you, these people are adults). Very rarely does the actual name appear in the sender line, and no one ever identifies themselves. So if I don’t recognize the email address, I have to send an email back saying, “uh, that’s great, but who are you?”

    Just this morning I almost dumped an important message in the spam folder because of the weird name in the sender line…

    I think I’ll go change my sender line to “It was a dark and stormy night.”

  2. Hahaha, that’s a wonderful idea. If you can’t get people to adopt sensible habits, show them how annoying their own habits are. I betcha there’s a program out there (written by a Korean, of course) that would allow some kind of randomisation of this function, actually. Wait, that’s something any spam software would automatically be configured for. Hmmmmmmm.

    But me, I can’t go that far. And as I say, most of the students I deal with include some kind of self-introduction within the email.

    I’ve actually only known a few “adults” (which I take you to mean college graduate, since personally I consider my college students as adults, too) who didn’t put their names in the Sender line, and at least those people (a) introduced themselves within the email and/or (b) kept the content of the Sender line consistent over very long periods of time, even years.

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