BCC Protection



At Opendoor, there’s a healthy default towards transparency. While we are a Slack-heavy company, we still use email a good amount–especially for communicating with external parties. However, email and transparency aren’t something that goes hand-in-hand, unless you’re Stripe I II. Luckily, BCC can be used to build openness and keeping relevant internal parties in the loop when emailing external parties. I never really used to BCC or get BCC’d until I worked here but now it’s become indispensable. That being said, getting BCC’d or BCC’ing somebody has also become one of my biggest fears.

  • What if I reply all??
  • What if the person who I BCC’d doesn’t realize they’re bcc’d, and they reply all??
  • What if the other people then realize that I was bcc’d and is now super confused??

Every once in a while my fear comes true…The case below: I bcc’d “C” but they ended up replying-all!





Email clients should build BCC Protection that would reduce the chances of ending up in one of the above scenarios in two steps:

  1. Visual Cues: Callout being BCC’d on a particular email. Use a colour to clearly signal to the reader that,“yo friend, you’ve been bcc’d. please remember that”
  2. Confirmation on Send: Additionally, if the user attempts to reply to any additional parties apart from the email address that bcc’d them, throw the user a warning when they hit send. You might save a partnership or somebody some embarrassment.

We’ve already gotten used to this when the word attachment is mentioned but there are no attachments on the email…this would be a nice addition to that.

Note: I would usually send this note to my good friends at Polymail but I’m actively attempting to give them a break from my ramblings

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By varadh

My general mission in life is to be helpful to people building products that have a positive impact on the world. If you're building something awesome, I'd love to chat: me@varadhja.in 🤖