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I was writing an email today, and I was supposed to write a phrase like this "did it for all of 'em", even though I eventually changed it to them as them as that looked a little informal to me, I am not rally sure if this is what the case is?

and just for information, mail was not for any boss/manager, it was just for a colleague but she is in US and I am not so I didn't know whether it is okay or not?

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It sounds quite informal, so I wouldn't use 'em unless your e-mails from her were equally informal. –  Cerberus Dec 14 '12 at 20:53
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Too informal for business. –  Mitch Dec 14 '12 at 21:18
    
Off topic: writing advice/critique. –  MετάEd Dec 15 '12 at 2:40
    
if your correspondent knows that you are a non-English speaker they'll let it slide, because they'll assume you are trying to try out some colloquialisms. –  jlovegren Dec 15 '12 at 2:55
    
@MετάEd I think this question would be more on topic if it was broader. "Which contractions can you use in a business email". E.G. "isn't" and "couldn't" would be OK while "ain't gonna" is out. But where to draw the line? On the other hand, that could lead to subjective answers. –  Mr Lister Dec 15 '12 at 9:38
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closed as off-topic by MετάEd, Barrie England, tchrist, p.s.w.g, Mari-Lou A Aug 14 '13 at 5:17

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1 Answer

The only place the contraction 'em has a use in writing is in fiction, where the goal is to portray a character's way of speaking. (Example: "The crowd cheered, 'Hit 'em again, harder!'") It's never used in written communication, no matter how informal.

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I’ve seen it in email — which is presumably a written not an oral medium. It’s just that it is sometimes seeking to emulate one. –  tchrist Dec 15 '12 at 14:46
    
gmcgath -That was a fine way of putting it... " 'em" is a big no-no in written communication. maybe ok while texting. anything is accepted in that lingo nowadays.. :) –  Dharu Krish Dec 15 '12 at 15:26
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