Because most email software limits the length of the message you can send, keep your messages relatively short. Most mailers can handle about one typed page before they reach their limit on message size
Sending Longer Documents
If you have longer documents to send electronically; however, you can attach a file of any sort to an email message. By attaching a file, you can:
- Submit abstracts or papers to conferences or journals
- Send a draft-in-progress to a co-worker, teacher, or Writing Center tutor
- Send digital pictures to a friend
- Send a table of data to a co-researcher
Particularly when you face a tight deadline, sending documents, data, and pictures electronically is much faster than sending them through a surface carrier. Electronic files are also easier for the recipient to manipulate electronically, so users generally prefer files over faxes. Check your mail program to see how to attach a complete file.
When you attach a file, you should always write a message that describes the contents and format of the attachment. Don't assume that the recipient has the same software unless you know you've sent files in that format before. When in doubt, send both a formatted file and a file saved as ASCII (or DOS or plain text). Be sure to tell the recipient in your message what version of the software you've used to save the file.
Just as we usually follow a fax with a telephone call to be sure the fax arrived clearly and completely, you should confirm that your attachment arrived in a readable format. In your message, you can ask the recipient to reply to your message, or you might follow up with a telephone call (depending on how important the documents/files are to both you and the recipient).