I do believe that the problem many people have with email is substantially
related to writing, not the technology itself. Any writer, even a good
one, writes a lot of bad stuff. Most people realize that our writing has
an individual stamp to it, and that even the most mundane writing reveals
things about us that make us look foolish, dazzling, sanctimonious, silly,
ignorant, learned, over-sensitive.....
As someone who has done a lot of writing, I know how difficult it is at
first to show someone what you have done. Especially with fiction - I've
just been writing a novel - it's like saying, "Here, this is me," when you
hand someone a chapter to read.
I also have friends who have been forever telling me how much they'd like
to write, but when I've given them a chance recently to write for a
business I have, they retreat rapidly. Months of cajoling, and nothing
but perplexed looks from them.
My conclusion is that in email, we are reduced to our words. We all
intuitively understand that those words represent us, not just our ideas.
Pressing that SEND button is a commitment that frightens many people.
Of course, it also may be that email is the 90s equivalent of the
telephone answering machine. Remember ten years ago when people would
say, "I hate talking into those things, so I just hang up." I haven't
heard anyone say that in a long time.
Tim Trummer <aen1997@TheRamp.net>
Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <email@example.com> -or- <http://world.std.com/~lo/>