I'm trying to explain to a coworker when I use "We" versus "I" in my work emails going outside of the organization, but I don't know myself.
This morning we were unable to connect the recovery channel at 18.104.22.168:11199. Our keys are current and have not been modified. Could you check for connectivity issues on your end? We'd appreciate it very much.
But then, after getting a response,
I see, thank you. It was indeed an old server we were trying to revive.
I see a range of new recovery addresses in an email from last year, but none match the user and feed addresses for this server.
Not the greatest example, but I've thought about this distinction before too, and I remember noticing myself using "I" more when I'm at fault, or possibly at fault, or admitting something. As an investigation continues, if the correspondent asks more details, I reply using "we," except when I'm not sure my thoughts are correct, in which case I use "I." Why is that?
English is my first language, and I don't think I'm alone in switching up these pronouns this way. But what is the logical pattern behind it? And more practically, how can I explain it to a non-native speaker of English?