The purpose of this study is twofold: (a) to present evidence for the use of the two time-honored features of politeness in Persian, namely self-abasement and other-elevating in electronic communication, and (b) to add a new dimension to Brown and Gilman’s (1960) seminal address formula to make it more inclusive so that it can accommodate for languages that do not follow the asymmetrical power semantics of this model. The data for this study comes from emails of the researcher’s former Iranian colleagues, the purpose of which was to maintain social relationship, while not pleading for a favor, hence a communication devoid of flattery. Qualitative analysis of the data suggests that the notion of power can be overruled by modesty through the practice of ‘self-abasement’ and ‘other-elevating’ address forms in Persian.