I have a membership from an organization e.g. ieee.org and I have some options for my email ID which I want to use in academy and professional work. I'm not a native English and I'm not familiar with the culture involved. I have these three options:

(consider my name as Serim Doe, which Serim is my first name and pretty rare, I didn't want make example of John Doe which is very common name).

[email protected]

[email protected]

[email protected]

I personally prefer [email protected] since it is more concise and shorter, but I want to know if making ID of only the first name is appropriate or not.

  • 1
    I don't think that any of these is inappropriate, but personally I would go with s.doe@.
    – Flyto
    Jan 28, 2014 at 7:59
  • 5
    I agree with Flyto but would also propose to use serim.doe@ . There is nothing wrong with the full name.
    – Dirk
    Jan 28, 2014 at 8:59
  • 1
    I have seen all of those used. Entirely up to your personal preferences, IMHO.
    – xLeitix
    Jan 28, 2014 at 9:18
  • Thanks, you're right but since [email protected] is more concise and shorter than e.g. [email protected] or blahblahbla(LongName)@ieee.org and My first name is pretty rare and short I wanted to take some advice. Thank you! However as you said I think using FirstName.LastName@org or F.LastName@org looks more professional.
    – SddS
    Jan 28, 2014 at 9:25
  • You should check that neither first nor last name sounds offensive; Serim is fine but if it happens to be Sexim...
    – vadim123
    Jan 28, 2014 at 19:49

2 Answers 2


In the US, everthing said in the comments applies (in short: everything goes, it's up to you).

In Europe (and especially in German speaking countries), it is very unsusual to call other people by ther first name, therefore serim@ would be considered inappropriate and people might be confused and think of it as your last name.

Therefore, if you think international, I'd propose s.doe@... or, serim.doe@... . Most companies and universities in Germany use the last version since it helps in avoiding name collisions (of course it's no guarantee).

  • 1
    Quick note, in Scandinavia you practically never call anyone with anything other than their first name. Even in Germany there are signs of change. The answer is still valid however.
    – posdef
    Jan 29, 2014 at 16:07

Using the firstname sends a signal of casualness. If you want to signal professionalism it's not a good strategy.

It's a bit like wearing a suit and a tie. You are sending a signal by wearing those clothes. There are professional contexts where you have to wear a suit and a tie. If you move mainly in those contexts, [email protected] might appear for people to be too casual. But it's not strong and I doubt that it will offend anyone.

The fact that you have an email address @ieee already signals some professionalism.

If you however move in areas where people don't wear suits and ties, [email protected] might be entirely okay.

  • 3
    It's a bit like wearing a suit and a tie. — Precisely. And in some academic subcultures, wearing a suit and tie instantly brands you as an outsider, or worse, an administrator.
    – JeffE
    Jan 29, 2014 at 15:13
  • The fact that you have an email address @ieee already signals some professionalism. — [citation needed] Membership in IEEE does not require any professional qualification; it only requires paying IEEE dues.
    – JeffE
    Jan 29, 2014 at 15:14
  • @JeffE, yes IEEE membership doesn't require professional qualification (irrelevant) but IEEE is a professional community. In this regard, sth like f.Lastname or Lastname might seems normal as Christian said.
    – SddS
    Feb 1, 2014 at 17:19
  • @ToX No, IEEE is an organization of people who pay IEEE dues, many (but not all) of whom are professionals.
    – JeffE
    Feb 1, 2014 at 21:05
  • 1
    @JeffE: Wearing a tie also doesn't require any technical qualification. It's still a signal. Having a AOL email address is also a signal. If you compare [email protected] to [email protected], the ieee address says: "Hey, I'm a member of a professional organisation but you can approach me informally." Depending on the academic subculture in which you are moving that might or might not be something you want to communicate. On the other hand if I would see an email address [email protected] that would indicate lack of professionalism.
    – Christian
    Feb 1, 2014 at 22:09

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