Email or E-mail? Huh! Is there a difference? What is the difference? Which is correct? How do we know which is correct? So many questions to be answered in this post. First, what is Email or E-mail (whatever the case may be)? Prepare to be enlightened. Email or E-mail is a method of exchanging digital messages between people over a network. The “E” in Email in E-mail simply means Electronic and mail is a system for transporting documents and other small packages . that is a very simple definition.

Humans have adapted to personal computers, cell phones, and related technology, our language has definitely evolved. But the confliction on who is right on the use of Email or E-mail is something we should really attend to.

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Honestly, I think it is all preferences and different writing styles that has continuously led to misconception on the use of Email or E-mail. I feel like writers spell these words several different ways, including email, Email and E-mail. Well, continue reading for better explanation of these terms.  

Is it Email or E-mail?

Email is only a variant spelling of e-mail, neither spelling is incorrect, and both are widely accepted. The truth is that E-mail and Email are both correct ways to spell the same word. Well, the issue of the hyphen (or lack thereof) in e-mail is still far from being settled. The thing is that different style guides prefer one spelling over the other, so if you need to follow one make sure you use the spelling it prescribes.

Which form should prevail? I would say that the options are, if you’re self-publishing or you’re compiling a house style guide for a company or organization, to decide for yourself and stick to one or the other, or go with the form that is preferred by a company or organization you are writing for or submitting writing to.

And if the former alternative pertains to you, however, consider that email is only the most prominent among a class of similarly structured words with e attached to bookcommercelearning, and so on, and consistency is a virtue. Hence, if e-mail, then e-book and so on. If email, then eBook and so on. If you don’t need to follow a style guide, pick one of the spellings and use it consistently.

Why spell it E-mail

Persons who use E-mail instead of Email have a good reason for doing so.

First, E-mail is a compound noun, made out of two words—“electronic” and “mail.” Thus, the e in e-mail is an abbreviation for “electronic,” and it’s used in a lot of other words as well—e-commerce, e-learning, and e-business.

Secondly, the general rule of hyphenation in compound words that combine a single letter (or a number) and a word is to hyphenate them. So technically, based on tradition, e-mail is the correct way to do it.

Why spell it Email

Also, in the case of email, it can be argued that the widespread use of the not hyphenated spelling has made this compound noun an exception to the rule. Well, it might also be said that not hyphenated spelling is simply the direction English is evolving, but good luck arguing that “tshirt” is a good way to write “t-shirt.”

Anyway, however you want to approach it, email is accepted or recommended by an increasing number of publications.


Though it seems that most of the world has moved on and settled on the simpler and newer variant of spelling—email—some people are still sticking with the older version, e-mail.

Having discussed all these…. where does this leave you? Which one should you use— is it the stubbornly traditional e-mail or the popular and generally accepted email? My suggestion, unless you have to adhere to a style guide, it’s completely up to you, as long as you use it consistently.

So, is it Email or E-mail? E-mail is an accepted spelling, Email is also an accepted spelling.

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