Sun, 07 Dec 2003

Can those forwarded e-mails

What could possibly be more annoying than spam e-mails? The answer is forwarded e-mails.

Spam e-mails came from some company we don't know, while forwarded ones are usually sent by our friends or acquaintances. With regular spam you know to delete it right away or filter it out, but when it comes from a name that you know, you're much likely to open it.

How many times has it happened that we are excited to see there are some new e-mails in the mailbox, only to find out that it's just a forwarded one. You're only one of the names on the address list who gets the "honor" to get the forwarded e-mail of the day. Hurray!

It's not really a serious problem, but more a minor irritant, a stubborn zit that will just not go away. Don't you just hate to receive something that's been forwarded a hundred times over, things like "Nokia will give a cell phone for every 100 persons you send this e-mail to!"? or chain e-mails like "Send this to 5 of your friends or you will be cursed!"

Oh yeah, right, we're so spooked.

I just don't get it with the people with a forwarding habit. What's in it for them? Sending out unfunny jokes to all the lists in their address book, Anne Geddes' baby photographs or Hallmark- like everlasting poems. Please, it's not that cute. In fact, it's not cute at all.

They seem to spend all day forwarding touching or funny e- mails to a long list of people who don't want it. They should know there is a big difference between useful and useless.

If we want a joke, we'd hang out with friends. When we would like to see babies, we visit our nephews and nieces. If we need a cell phone, then the place is Roxy Mas.

And just like a virus, the habit spreads, with mail coming in from people we have the most fleeting relationships with. Gosh, I don't have a one-night-stand to get a forwarded e-mail the following day. When I told them to keep in touch, I didn't mean to do it through forwarded e-mails.

What's worse, this type of e-mail sometimes is not only 1 or 2 kilobytes; it's so huge that it jams your mailbox. While it might be arousing to get porn clips at first, would you really like your mailbox crashed because of a single 1MB attached e-mail?

According to Internet research, if you get three forwarded e- mails per day, each wasting about 20 seconds, that adds up to about one minute of your precious time each day. Not much you say? Well if forwarded e-mails affect about 10 million people for one year, that means 3,600,000,000 minutes per year are wasted on these e-mails, equivalent to 90 lifetimes. And so you know.

As a solution, you might like to change your e-mail address and remind yourself to only give the address to someone worthwhile. You could also always ask your friends, spouse, family or those pestering one-night-stands to just stop. But if they think they've done nothing wrong, and continue messing up your life, use the reply all button and write literally what's on your mind right away.

A suggested message: "bug off with your tasteless e-mails". Then again, you can forward this article to your forwarding-fancy friends. If that doesn't send them the message, I don't know what else will.

Or, maybe you're on the other side. You're one of them who is constantly forwarding crap. If you're sending them to people you think want it, you're wrong. You're probably annoying everyone you know. You're probably the public enemy of the moment, someone that other people give the "forward-geek" nickname. My advice: don't be that person.

-- Kenny Santana