Email a giant waste of time




Not to mention that it’s eminently storable, searchable, and can cause litigation to ensue. Text messages or just talking is much more secure.


All good things in moderation. It really does suck when people can’t make the judgement call about which coversations should be email, IM, phone, or face-to-face.

The meat of the article, though, was really about labor policy. A boss expecting an immediate answer in the middle of the night may be facilitated by email to some degree, but is borne of a culture with no respect for humans other than their labor capacity.


When I worked in an office, I used to be pretty good at timely email responses. I soon learned to write a batch file that held them back, and mailed them all out 30 minutes after quitting time.

It really cut down on people expecting a same-day response all the time, and coming to see me to ask if I got their email. And who knows, maybe some people thought I was actually there at 5:30, working late.

In my view, email was one medium that never really settled down to a common etiquette or set of expectations for its use.


Maybe because so few people give a shit about etiquette?


Ooh. Language. Pass me my smelling salts.


But isn’t that a feature of e-mail, and not a bug? It’s like the military tradition of demanding written orders when the order is a bit sketchy; a paper (or electronic) trail keeps bosses from blaming subordinates for things they told them to do.


I use POP3, not a web based email service. As soon as I download the message, it gets cleared off the server (in theory, at least). If I send a message to someone, I’m not posting it on the front page of Google. It is supposed to be sent to one individual, not the general public. That’s why the POP3. I rarely use GMail. If you want to save emails, store them locally, preferably encrypted.


That’s kind of a shame because etiquette is not just thing you read about in a book by Emily Post. Etiquette is like oil in the machinery of social interaction.

YOU may not think you care about etiquette, but I challenge you to think about etiquette next time somebody cuts in front of you in line.


Any boss of mine that expects instant response at midnight, will find himself my ex-boss the following work day morning. I do not tolerate that level of invasion of privacy. That would be a no-notice resignation. He has no manners so why should I.


I wasn’t speaking for myself. But look around how people on the internet behave. They’re pretty much the same in private life as well.


Think about the network effects, the fact that positive network effects are likely to be small (it’s usually point to point communication, it encourages up to a few hundred words to be used at any one time, it’s unlikely that your single recipient will read your missive), and the negative network effects can be major and of the accidental “reply-to-all” or of the embarrassingly felonious “go ahead and shut down the statewide baby-sustenance network per our marketing plan” kind.


Fair enough. :smile:


You can have my email when you can pry it from my cold dead hands.

Without it how would I communicate with the guy sitting behind me?

Feel free to take the phone, though.


Luddite. Teens and young adults seldom check their email these days. It’s Snapchat or texting now.


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