Let me say this nicely: I dislike email.

There, having said that, let me explain. I live on my mobile. Email is probably the most inept technology to use on a mobile (of less than 5in in screen size). Email portends that you want to sit and compose – there’s a time for that. Email portends a degree of formality – context is wrapped around that.

Yet email is used for the most inane things. For example, I get emails from a client that have more text in the signature than in the email body – what kind of sense does that make? Better to use SMS or IM right?

I’m a member of several social networks and forums, do I really need email notification for events, or is RSS better? I would think so, since I could use RSS against a widget on my mobile to see what I want to see about the notification event.

Yes, there is SMS, IM, Wave, Twitter, etc. all as means of comm – but you know what, we use email for everything. And frankly speaking, I disagree with it being used as such. There are better things to use email for – like writing long letters that could also be blog posts.

Ironically, I’ve tried to convert tons of folks towards thinking about the communication tech they use, but with little success. Most default to email and don’t even know why – admitting that its not the most efficient means of communication.

Maybe I’m barking up the wrong tree here. Because as I see mobile/web communications as going, email seems to be a vestige of communication that’s like an answering machine. Yes, we all like to know someone thought enough of us to leave us a message, but why not just send me an SMS/MMS instead and let me reply back with IM? Is that just more efficient?

Ding! Another email comes in (from ideas.symbian). This can be managed so much easier if we used the right tech.


3 thoughts on “The Misuse of Email for Notification Comms

  1. Very true AW, but the problem, as I see it, is that most Companies have replaced Certified Letters with email. It is the whole C.Y.A. factor. 😉 Also many Companies will not allow IM (GTalk, YMessenger) on their systems.

    Don’t get me wrong! I agree with you. It is just that right now we live in a VERY Litigious environment right now. I think most BIG businesses will always stick with email for this reason. Unfortunately.

  2. In the enterprise, IM is handed by UC (unified comm) solutions like Exchange + Office Communicator – and all of these are able to be logged (and saved into Outlook for that matter). I’d like to believe that its legal-related, but I don’t know. Seems more like not knowing the right tool to me.

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