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Friday, July 20, 2007

The End of Email?

I often talk about how the "gamer" generation views email as snail mail. Here is yet more proof. Tom King of Mobilemind sent me this great link to an article Kids say e-mail is, like, soooo dead which explains why kids don't use email.

My favorite part to the article: "Sometimes I say I e-mailed you, but I mean I Myspace'd or Facebook'ed you,"

Yes, they are creating verbs out of former English teacher is cringing as you read this.

Over at the Pew Internet and American life project, their report Teens and Technology: Youth are Leading the Transition to a Fully Wired and Mobile Nation published in 2005. Indicates that teens are not really that into email even way back in 2005.
Email, once the cutting edge “killer app,” is losing its privileged place among many teens as they express preferences for instant messaging (IM) and text messaging as ways to connect with their friends. In focus groups, teens described their new environment. To them, email is increasingly seen as a tool for communicating with “adults” such as teachers, institutions like schools, and as a way to convey lengthy and detailed information to large groups. Meanwhile, IM is used for everyday conversations with multiple friends that range from casual to more serious and private exchanges.
This just shows the power of social networks and how important it is for this generation to be wired to one another. The social network trumps almost all other forms of communication. If you are not thinking about creating a social network around topics, areas of concern or competitive should be or your training program or academic courses are going to be...obsolete.

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Spyke Krepshaw said...

Let's think about this for a second. What is e-mail (electronic mail)? presents us with the following definition, "a system for sending messages from one individual to another via telecommunications links between computers or terminals."

That being said, e-mail is not going to be pushed "under the rug," we are just simply using a different delivery and retrieval method as compared to what we typicaly refer to as e-mail.

When I log into my Facebook account, there is a link titled Inbox which displays how many messages I have yet to read. Inbox huh, sounds like e-mail terminology to me.

I can understand the migration of younger individuals to the social network based messaging (still classified as e-mail) over traditional e-mail. However this trend is not carrying over into the professional world. Microsoft, one of the leading software developers in the world has released a software package titled SharePoint. This software provides internal portals for businesses. Basically just a fancy way of organizing an Intranet. This software also allows the same functions as Facebook and MySpace yet professionals are sticking to traditional e-mail.

Even as the younger generation moves up to the professional level, I don't see this new type of e-mail following them through. At least not for quite some time.

Karl Kapp said...


Maybe the death of email is over stated, maybe it is morphing to mean something else, not the "traditional" email system but rather other tools to communicate from person to person or site to site without having an entire third-party application to mediate the process.

Professionally, email is still HUGE. But many organizations are already starting to adopt IM and other forms of faster, more spam-free electronic communications.

We will probably never see the death of email, but I think it is in a decline and as other forms of technology become available, it may disappear even futher into the background.

AC said... is a new email/IM/social network/forum mashup that provides a great alternative to email. Advantages over email: no spam, instant messages, send large files, no inbox limit, messages can be private, public or to a group, people can start threaded private or group discussions around each message (like a forum post). Also it has an API so 3rd parties can build messaging tools on the platform.