If you have a conversation with me via email it is always confidential, always. As a blogger, people are always afraid that I will post private emails or telephone conversations because it’s common knowledge that bloggers are always looking for a story. I can tell because they always write “this is confidential” or “please don’t post this”. I don’t take it as a lack of trust but rather just searching a reassurance that they don’t want the info shared. And I never do. But….
When I get unsolicited emails from people with whom I have no personal relationship or have never met, all is fair game. Of course, if they say “please don’t publish this”, 99 times out of 100 I won’t, but most of these types of emails are just a bombardment of “buy my domains” or “what do you think” type emails. Once an exchange of emails has taken place, I usually consider it a relationship and won’t publish unless the new person is just an ass and the conversation is merely a verbal email fight.
I think it’s wrong to publish emails because of sour grapes. Taking and posting conversation that occurred in the past and were never meant to be seen by anyone other than the people in the conversation, is both unethical and wrong. To prove something in a court of law perhaps, to make your point in a court of public opinion? I think it’s unnecessary. You’ve seen me post a few emails here and there but it usually is for comedic humor. A posting of emails between myself and some spammer. Or like today’s where a guy mass emails all the domain bloggers and tries to get publicity. I gave him publicity, whether it’s the kind he wants I’m not sure. He sent the email and when you send out an email to someone you don’t know you are essentially sending out a public email.
If I email someone that is not a good friend, I always write using information that I would not have a problem being made public. I’ve always been considered an open book but there are very few things I care to hide. I am a man of personal responsibility and have no problem dealing with the repercussions of my words. When I send an email I try and make sure that I would feel comfortable if that email was posted on the front page of facebook. Because it could. I will send emails between friends that I would rather not others see but I trust the other side. Certainly there could be someone intercepting these emails but I’m not really not the best choice if you want to financially benefit from stealing emails. I never send passwords or secret info through email. I keep it in house and I prefer to keep my gossip on the phone.
In short, I am not going to screw over business associates and friends that email me but fully understand that emails I send out could be used against me. Doing business with site owners that have used past emails to defame another person whether they were wrong or right make me a little uncomfortable. I could be their next post. As for people that spam me? Well, you deserve to be my next story.