Do you email or e-mail?

email_vs_e-mail Ever wondered whether it’s email or e-mail? This controversy has been going on for a long time. Just google up the search term email vs e-mail and you will find several discussions on the topic. Rob has a nice post on this topic in his blog.

While not many people seem to care much about it, it does make an interesting topic to waste your time over. While email is easier to type, there is one opinion that it should be e-mail, since the hyphen denotes the compound word “electronic mail”.

A little googling reveals that there are varied opinions and no consensus, and that both the forms are in use.

But I was interested in knowing which was more popular, email or e-mail.

Conducting a poll would take too much time. So I decided to use Google Trends for the purpose. I did a comparison for All Years, which essentially means 2004 to 2008, and also compared the results for individual years.

Here’s what I found.

All Years (2004 to 2008)


It’s obvious from the graph that people prefer to use email than e-mail and understandably so, as e-mail needs an extra hyphen. So, for every one person who prefers to write e-mail, there are 4 others who prefer email.

A look at the year-wise trend also shows something interesting.

Year-wise Trend

2004 email_trend_2004
2006 email_trend_2006
2007 email_trend_2007
2008 email_trend_2008

Apparently, over the years, more and more people are emailing rather than e-mailing.

So, the next time someone insists that you use e-mail, just email him/her a link to this post.



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