I am pretty sure that you already considered if you should be writing the abbreviation of electronic mail as email or e-mail (or as something else yet). The same confusion applies to the abbreviations of electronic commerce, electronic book and so on.
In reality there is no universal rule. If you read the Wikipedia entry for electronic mail, you will be able to grasp the depth of the problem:
Spelling of this term is disputed. Many now regard the word “email” as a perfectly valid and formal word in its own right, and regard the abbreviation “e-mail” as anachronistic. The word “email” is recognized as a valid English word in all major dictionaries however the e-mail abbreviation is often still used. Despite the word “email” being used in common English the computer industry and web sites still use multiple variants of the term.
Most manuals of style recommend the usage of e-mail. The majority of companies also follow that recommendation (e.g., CNN, BBC, The New York Times, Microsoft).
Other companies (e.g., Google, Yahoo! and Apple), however, prefer to use the non-hyphened version email. Throughout the Internet the use of email seems to prevail as well. A quick search on Google for the term email reveals over 5 billion results, while the term e-mail is found only 500 million times or so.
The question then becomes: which form is correct? Have your say in our poll!
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