When replying to the sender of email sent also to other people (multiple email addresses in CC field) should I reply to all or just to the sender? I think it makes more sense top reply only to the sender.

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    This question has nothing to do with English language use -- perhaps, etiquette. But, even then, it depends on the email. For this reason, most email programs give access to two buttons "Reply" and "Reply all".
    – thomj1332
    Jul 24, 2017 at 14:26
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    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because this question was migrated, and there is currently nothing in the question that gives me the idea this is a workplace-specific question.
    – Erik
    Jul 24, 2017 at 14:45
  • @Erik How is a question about email communications not about the workplace?
    – David K
    Jul 24, 2017 at 14:46
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    @DavidK you can mail lots of people, including ones you don't work with. If the question was about mailing friends or family, our answers won't be very useful.
    – Erik
    Jul 24, 2017 at 14:50
  • @Erik I think that unless the OP comes back to tell us otherwise, we can assume the context is the workplace. If we make that assumption (as I would for almost any question posted here), then this question is definitely on topic.
    – David K
    Jul 24, 2017 at 14:57

3 Answers 3


Just ask yourself who would be interested in reading your reply.

Then edit the list of email addresses to delete the names that won't have an interest.

A lot of this depends on the nature of the email you're replying to and the nature of your reply.


If the people in the CC are people and not company wide email distribution lists*, then reply to all. The first person wanted them informed, so you should keep them informed by replying to all.

*We've probably all seen the email threads where it ends up being dozens of people saying to take them off the email. Don't include company wide DLs unless your company is twenty people.

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    Agreed on this. The only exception would be if you are starting a new topic from the original chain, in which case I think it makes sense to reevaluate who should be on the list as in Pete's answer.
    – David K
    Jul 24, 2017 at 14:48

You should replay to all when your answer will be necessary to know for the original sender and all people in the original email's To: and Cc: field.