YATES-L Archives

Archiver > YATES > 2003-10 > 1067497488

From: "George W. Durman" <>
Subject: [YATES-L] Good Subject Lines (Was: What should I put in here?)
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 2003 02:04:48 -0500
References: <102820031757.12072.2569@comcast.net>
In-Reply-To: <102820031757.12072.2569@comcast.net>

At 10/28/03 12:57 PM Tuesday, wrote:

>A subject line is meant to give an idea of the content of the attached
>letter, yet you guys are giving George a hard time over something that
>is most important in letter writing on the internet. Are those of you
>who are responding in an insulting manner guilty of not giving a
>proper subject line? Is that why you are attacking this man for his
>valid request? As a mailing list administrator of other lists, I do
>know the importance of this one small line.
>Consider the current onslaught of junk mail in your inbox. Their
>current tactic is to use misleading subject lines. Something that
>George has addressed here and yet you guys find his request offensive.
>Why? I am at a loss to understand why you wouldn't want to post an
>appropriate short line in the subject line in order to get others to
>read your letter. I delete tons of mail every day that shows a subject
>line that DOES grab my attention, only to discover in the letter that
>they are trying to sell me something I don't want. Are you not trying
>to gain the attention of new YATES cousins or those who might have
>that book that has your relative listed in it? What is the big deal
>over giving us pertinent info in the subject line! That's what it's
>It all comes down to common courtesy. I intend to continue to use
>that. If you are asking or giving info on one of my relatives, and
>your subject line does not peek my interest, then I guess we'll never
>connect on the lines. Your choice, folks.
>Tina Hall
>P.S. I wonder what I might have been missing lately?
**********END OF ORIGINAL MESSAGE TEXT***********

Tina: Thank you, Dear Lady!

I couldn't have said it better. SUBJECT LINES are SO important in
these days of SPAM, and, especially, when some of us subscribe to
dozens of Mailing Lists. We just don't have time to open each email
to see if there's anything in it that pertains to us!!!!! I receive
to 1000 emails daily. I am deeply into genealogy research, for many
different family lines. I JUST DON'T HAVE TIME TO OPEN UP

If you other users want most of us to ignore your replies, then just
continue what you've been doing. If you can't pick out the subject
line of the post from the Digest and put THAT in your subject line,
then you're too lazy to deserve my reading your reply. It's that

I saw a couple of replies from people who said they opened and
scanned EVERY email they received, excepting obvious SPAM.
Folks, just because you receive only a couple dozen genealogy
emails daily doesn't mean that others receive so few. The whole
thing about good subject lines is to make it easier for those who
receive hundreds and hundreds to be able to look at those that
have some pertinent data for them and not even open the rest.

I have researched our YATES line and know all the ancestors
and their siblings. I've also opened and read literally thousands
of emails dealing with other lines, and can recognize the names
associated with those lines as well. If I see a subject line that
contains a name in our line, I, of course open it. If I see one
that contains a name I know is NOT in our line, I don't open
it. See how easy subject lines make it? A good subject line
would look something like this:

YATES, John, m.TATTERSHALL, Mary; 1612-1654; Lyford Grange, Berkshire,
YATES, Thomas, m.WHITE, Frances; 1525-1565; Lyford Grange, Berkshire,

Do you how that conveys the most information in the least
amount of space? And typing surnames in ALL CAPS in
both subject lines and email bodies makes it so easy for the
reader to pick out the names?

George W. Durman

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