Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Mail is for the elderly

In the newspaper here there was a good article by Theo Stielstra called 'mailen is voor oudjes'. Henk Blanken also blogged about it. Stielstra states that mail is for the elderly (in this case 25+!). Students communicate via MSN, SMS and Hyves. A 15-year old is quoted who says that she uses email at times when she has to send files to fellow students for school. Another had the experience that she thought she wasn't invited to a party - but hadn't checked her mail for a long time! Another example (as I blogged before) of exclusion through choice of technology.

So why don't they use mail? Mail is old-fashioned and slow. Writing mail ressembles work.

I must say I recognise the way mail for me is the baseline, if a forum doesn't have alert, at times I forget to check it. I participate in Facebook through mails. Our babysit (17 years) complained once her friends don't reply to her mails frequently (this article explains why!). That shows that even amongst the youngsters, there are huge differences.

Conclusion: communication is getting easier, and getting harder.


hoong said...

The point should be: different tool for different purpose.

I don't think it is proper to send sms when it should be an email ???

Email is for official, proper, organized, thoughtful, VERY thoughtful, unobtrusive (spelling) etc. etc. kind of communications media. I am sure one would not send an sms to report a meeting minutes?

The same goes for chat or sms. These are SHORT messages, chit-chat, discussions mode etc. etc. kind of tool. I am sure one would not write a 10 page message while chatting to a friend?

People, especially youngsters, have to learn what is proper and what is not.

Perhaps we can take this as an example: I am very sure not many people in their right mind would go for a job interview with a bikini on UNLESS it is for a job as a BIKINI model, or is requested to come with one. IF we can pay attention to what is proper dress code, why then can we not take some moment to choice a proper communication tool?

Joitske said...

Hi Cindy, nice to see you, everything fine? Are you going to the next e-collab meeting?

I think we should become smarter in choosing between tools en using a variety of tool. I think in practice we are driven by what we know, like (preferences). And this is getting more complex!

hoong said...

I was thinking about what I wrote.

I think we should consider even more about what tool to choose for what kind of communication-purpose etc. etc. For a very different reason.

What I find more common these days, especially with young people, the choice is FAST, FAST, FAST.. computer games, sms, chat etc. These are mostly ´fragmented ways of doing things´. Would that, could that, affect their ability for critical thinking= (my keyboard is going crazy again. The question mark key is not working). For example.

Yes. I agreed that one sometime have no choice but to follow the trend. But we need planners, decision makers etc. And these functions need skills other than just focus on FAST, FAST, FAST.

Seriously, IMHO, we should encourage people to use emails, to write something more coherence, put more thoughts in creating something that is more rounded and complete. These are basic skills to train our brain for critical thinking, decision making, planning. If we seriously want others to be better manager, decision maker, then start helping them to use their brain in a different way.