I’ve got 1995 emails after just a weekend, 75 of those made it through Mail, Apple’s default email program. 35 of those “not junk” emails are spam. I’ve been prompted in the past to make Junk mail automatically head to the junk folder, but I got too many false positives, incorrect marking of legitimate email as spam, to feel comfortable doing so. I don’t have time anymore, however, to continue to teach Mail what is good email. I’ve turned it on so I can move on with my life.
I can whine about the fact that I’m losing good email, be a studious developer, and implement the various server-side / client side methods that exist out there. I don’t, however, have time. Email is screwed; it’s built on a flawed platform of not verifying authenticity.
X gens on back to baby boomers wonder why us Y gens really don’t get all uppity about privacy issues, like blogging our personal lives, voluntarily installing spy ware, and handing over personal information on disparate websites. Yes, a few of us think the US government’s various privacy violations need to have multiple people be held accountable because they are wrong, but bottom line is the perception is different. One of the reasons is, we recognize the value of identity and the power it entails by knowing, for sure, another’s identify. Social networking systems abound that allow control over our relationships. It’s not so much retaining control of our data, but rather getting more control over our communications with others.
Email has no forced identify, and therefore, has no control. As such, it has slid far from my personal social network. Yes, I still get and read emails, but the time invested is getting less and less return. Many attempts have been made to off load the work to the sender by clicking those authorize email links in auto-responders. I’ll never click those as they themselves are spam messages and do not adapt to changing email addresses.
Instead, the move to a stronger identify has strengthened my network. For example, I now text a whole lot more than I did last year. I used to hear on the news and blogs that “kids” these days were textting, and thought email was something old people used. I thought textting was pretty dumb. Now, I use it all the time. Unlike my wife who gets copious amounts of incorrect text messages, I get text messages from people I know. I don’t get spam. You can’t send me a text message unless you know my phone number, which isn’t hard to get. For now, I have more control. I’ve gotten spammed twice in my life on IM. I have various identities on IM to ensure I have control over “how much presence” I truly am exposing. My phone numbers are still my #1 fave to communicate.
Textting, IM, and phone calls rock. Email sucks.
On the flip-side, I need to be accessible to potential new clients, friends & family, and other people asking me questions, hence I have 3 email addresses. I’ll let Mail’s junk filter, SpamSoap, and whatever Google uses handle the frontal assaults. While spam does get through, it is extremely manageable now, and 3 points of contact allows an easier time of communication.
While it is a shame I don’t have time to remove all false positives from my life, this is the world I live in and I need to move on. It’s email’s fault for not being built with spam control built into the protocol. Networking is one the pivotal things that helped me be successful. It is hard to walk the fine line how you communicate with those in your network to ensure relevance, and generally filter out the signal to noise ratio for both friends and business. I’d say this year email took the biggest hit in terms of relevance. My primary means of interacting with the world is via email, and I don’t see that changing any time soon. Yet today I just pressed “apply” on settings dialog that could negatively impact my life.
Drama Queen? Sure. Worried? Don’t have time. Email is very important to me and I have no choice but to put faith in the email that gets through being relevant.