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Very truly yours

Posted by Michael Bloch in online world (Wednesday April 9, 2008 )

The recent to and fro between Yahoo and Microsoft over M$’s possible acquisition of Y! has been pretty much background static for me – just another day in the life of the online version of corporate cancer – ho hum. However, a letter from Jerry Yang and Roy Bostock to Steve Balmer had me smiling.

The letter can be viewed here.. skip all the yada yada though – Yahoo are basically “we want more money” – it’s just a couple of words at the end that made me giggle like a school kid.

.. Very truly yours.

Back when I was wearing a suit, I was working with a rather progressive lady who taught me a great deal about communication techniques and who was very big on etiquette.

She was typing up a formal letter one day and I noticed she signed it;



I pointed out to Barbara that she had forgotten “Yours” as I was a bit of a stickler back then on formal communications and found it odd she omitted it given her own dedication to the written and spoken word.

She basically said: “I’m not his.. I’m not anyone’s”.

She had a point, and from that day on I dropped the “Yours” from my signature lines. As the years go by, whenever I see it in communications, the more wrong it seems to be.

In the letter from the Y! to Big Steve, it’s almost as though they are communicating as lovers rather than rivals brokering a huge deal. And using the term “truly” in business is just saying “we are about to screw you for all we can”. Maybe that was the intention anyway )

Sincerely is a nice middle ground in my opinion, no Yours required.

Yes, it was a slow news day for me :). Have a good day.


Michael Bloch


Email etiquette


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