General Question

waterskier2007's avatar

What is the difference between CC and BCC?

Asked by waterskier2007 (2053points) June 17th, 2008

in an email

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

5 Answers

robmandu's avatar

BCC = blind carbon copy

In the context of e-mail, blind carbon copy (abbreviated BCC and sometimes referred to as Blind Courtesy Copy) refers to the practice of sending a message to multiple recipients in such a way that what they receive does not contain the complete list of recipients.

IOW, people on the BCC list get a copy of your email, and no one knows who all is on the BCC. They do see the From: and To: and Cc: fields though!

So, the problem is, for folks not familiar with the concept of BCC, they might hit the “Reply to All” button, and then “give themselves away” by announcing you sent an email covertly.

I eschew use of that in favor of a separate fwd’d email to interested parties that I might not want on the original distrib.

waterskier2007's avatar

so they (the person who gets BCC’d sees who got the email,. but those who were only cc’ed or to’ed do not see who was BCC’ed?

robmandu's avatar


marinelife's avatar

If you are interested, the two terms are hangovers from the typewriter days. Carbon Copies were created from sheets of carbon coated paper that when placed between the original piece of paper and a second piece of paper made a smudgy, bluish copy of the original. It was also the practice for secretaries and administrative assistants to indicate cc: and a reicpient’s name at the bottom of the document so that the recipient knew who had gotten a copy. A blind carbon copy, then, was a copy sent to someone without alertng the original recipient. (Similar to robmandu’s explanation for email use today.)

Ack, even thinking of going back to pre-wordprocessng days makes me quail.

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