Kisses and Hugs in the Office – Jessica Bennett and Rachel Simmons – The Atlantic.

This essay looks at the use of “xo” as an email sign-off in professional settings.  It starts by asking if it’s professional at all, and then slides into discussing the gender of who’s using it — because it’s mostly women, and of course that leads to a rant asking “Why, after all the strides we’ve made to be taken seriously at work, must we end our e?mails with the digital equivalent of a pink Gelly Roll pen?”

DAMN, the gender essentializing in this piece is irritating.  Apparently women have “tonal antennae, which pick up on even the smallest shifts” in office relationships.  Uh huh.

But what truly baffles me is this:  Who uses a sign-off in a work-related email?  Who needs one — that’s why i have a signature line!  I’ve only ever used a sign-off (“Sincerely”, for example) when i’m doing the email equivalent of cold calling.  Otherwise, once a relationship has been established, i strictly rely on my signature line as the closure to my email.

I’ve only ever used “xo” or some similar sign-off in personal emails.


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