Take the 2-minute tour ×
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

What is the more correct use of a "With regards" line with an e-mail signature?

With regards,
--
[First name] [Last name]

--
With regards,
[First name] [Last name]

Is there another standard to follow? Does it even matter?

share|improve this question
    
    
add comment

migrated from superuser.com Oct 7 '11 at 2:42

This question came from our site for computer enthusiasts and power users.

5 Answers

up vote 7 down vote accepted

The double dash delimeter lets email clients know what is body and what is signiture. While you are using the signiture feature of the email client to add your standard signoff, "Regards, " I would consider part of the body of the email. At least, from my perspective, where I see this machine added in a separate part of the email away from the text that was written, I know that the "regards" are entirely false (even recognising it is a token gesture anyway).

I would say the signature should be:

With regards,

[first name] [last name]
--
[any additional contact or other information]

share|improve this answer
    
This is normally how we would do it on our mailing lists. –  Jordon Bedwell Oct 7 '11 at 11:58
add comment

There is no formal standard.

Text below the dash is your contact information, a bit like what you'd put in the top corner of a paper letter, some or all of: full name, email, address, phone, fax, etc.

Above the dash is the body of the actual email message, like the main part of a paper letter. This includes the greeting, message, sign-off and your name (can be first name only). Now, this main part is a single unit, so you shouldn't segregate the sign-off from the rest.

With regards,
[first name]
--
[first name] [last name]
[Any other details]

In fact you can omit the dash if you want's especially if you use another font or size for the contact info.

Now as to etiquette. You could put the "With regards" in your email program's signature so it is automatically appended. As @Paul said, "Regards" is a token and often false gesture, and especially so when over-the-top "With my very warmest regards" is added to every email without thought. So some may find it a little rude if you can't even take the time to type this in yourself and tailor it: perhaps you should sometimes use "Thank you".

share|improve this answer
add comment

If you are interested in etiquette standards for online communications, the only good resource I know of is The Netiquette pages at Albion.

The main rule of thumb for an email trailer is that it should be short (four lines or less I believe). Yes, that includes any crap your company auto-posts at the end.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Consider the de-facto purpose of the “-- ” line: it is to mark text which is not actually part of the content of your message, so would be clutter in a reply quote or a condensed view of messages. “With regards” and your name are such text; therefore they go below the “-- ”. A generic rule: Would you put it in every message you write? Then put it below the line.

share|improve this answer
add comment

In common emails, there's really no standardized styles, anything goes.

But if you want to go by some sort of standard, your first version references the usenet email standard, and is a standardized response therein.

share|improve this answer
    
I've read all relevant RFC and other material. The question, however is, does the "With regards," line go with the signature, or is it part of the body? I also think I might be being too anal. –  Michael Pasqualone Oct 6 '11 at 23:34
    
What exactly do you mean by signature and body? Do you mean automated "macros" in regards to your email client? –  rlb.usa Oct 6 '11 at 23:36
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.