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Buried in email?

CmdrTaco posted more than 13 years ago | from the i-know-I-am dept.

Spam 209

Jethro73 writes "There is an article on Yahoo! about how Workers are mired in e-mail wasteland. They say employees waste an hour a day managing e-mail. This page at Cisco claims employees spend two hours per day, but cite a 15% increase in worker's productivity despite that." A few weeks ago I blew up my laptop and lost all my mail filters. When I got everything back up, I discovered that over 70% of my email is junk (compared to 25% after all my filters were in place). Filtering my mail is the only thing that makes reading my email possible. Well, that and ignoring any message complaining about Karma :)

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Re:'Managing' email (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#277005)

This really has nothing to do with anything. Since I am in involved in computers as a profession, commonly people will ask me for help, like my parents friends (when I'm home visiting).
One of these people is old. Like...I'd say...70-80's old. She insists that she must be getting porn spam because some young man ( maybe her nephew I think) sent her an email, and he looks at porn. I tried to explain to her that it wasnt the case. She didnt believe me.
Ohwell, I guess maybe I should stop putting her email into all the porn sites I vist.

Re:Poor man's spam filter (2)

jandrese (485) | more than 13 years ago | (#277008)

Until you sign up for a mailinglist that automatically adds a "how to unsubscribe" section on the bottom of each message. :)

Not that it helps, even with a little note on the bottom of every message people still manage to post "How do I unsubscribe?" messages about once a week or so on even moderatly crowded mailinglists.

Down that path lies madness. On the other hand, the road to hell is paved with melting snowballs.

Re:Email is sloppy (2)

bluGill (862) | more than 13 years ago | (#277009)

True, but at least with email it is easy to skip the long winded but useless parts.

"Hi hank, this is andrea at extention 123, thanks for getting back to me on the bacon problem, I have one more question: how many cysts are accaptable in a slice?" Said aloud I waste a couple borning minutes before getting to something useful. A reply by voice mail is just as bad because I have to give a summery of the question first. In email I just replay with an answer "5", while in voice mail my reply is "Hello andrea, about your questions about the acceptable limit of cysts in bacon, 5 reasonable limit."

Of course the above example is completely made up. (A engineer who knew a female to talk to should have been your first clue.) You get the idea, voicemail is nice, but it wastes a lot of time with redundancy and boiler plate. Email has the same thing, but you an quickly skip it.

Just because you can send email (2)

Zachary Kessin (1372) | more than 13 years ago | (#277015)

Does not mean that you have anything of intrest to say! Actualy I don't get much junk at all, most of what I get are mailing lists that I want to get.

Re:Free e-mail Services and Spam (1)

Oloryn (3236) | more than 13 years ago | (#277016)

Most of the spam I get is from accounts at hotmail or whatever similar service. Some spammers seem to have scripts to create multiple accounts on these sites and abuse them quite easily.

If you're concluding that the spam is from accounts at hotmail, etc, because a free account address appears in the From: line, you're making an erroneous conclusion. From: lines on spam are almost always forged, and typically do not indicate the real originator or the spam. For the originator, you have to trace the Received: lines, and the best that can typically give you is an ip address. A better conclusion would be that it's popular among spammers to forge a free account in the From: field. I don't think this is something that you can hold hotmail et al responsible for.

Re:What is "Bill S.1618 TITLE III" ? (1)

Oloryn (3236) | more than 13 years ago | (#277017)

What's up with that bill ? Is that true or is it just FUD, a lie ?

Well, it's true that that bill passed Congress. That, however, is irrelevant because it didn't pass the Senate, and wasn't signed by the President. It isn't law in the U.S. or anywhere else.

It gets rather amusing to see this disclaimer appearing on spam that originates outside the U.S. or advertises products/services for non-U.S. businesses. Gee, the U.S. must have become really powerful if a bill that didn't actually make it into law affects the rest of the world.

All in all, it again reinforces the 3 laws of anti-spamming:

  1. Spammers Lie.
  2. If a spammer appears to be telling the truth, see rule 1.
  3. Spammers are stupid.

Dont you dare touch my joke email! (1)

BrookHarty (9119) | more than 13 years ago | (#277023)

My dirty joke email is the only decent email I get all day! And if your spending 49 minutes a day on junk mail, you need to learn how to use filters. Damn IT (aka desktop nazi's)!, they put up proxies so I cant surf pr0n or pop my email, they filter my exchange email for jokes/exe's, they run startup domain scripts to install bigbrother software, whats next keyloggers and ankle chains?! BTW, to fight IT, I ssh tunnel to my home linux box, and run a proxy, I disabled login scripts, and put jokes/exe's inside of word docs.
I quit when they get ankle chains!

Re:That sounds about right... (1)

RasputinAXP (12807) | more than 13 years ago | (#277026)

Personally I wouldn't complain about getting some Hot Slippery Teens in my mailbox.
--

that 49 minutes would have been wasted anyway! (1)

ethereal (13958) | more than 13 years ago | (#277027)

I check my email when I've been working on something for a while and need a break to think about something else. If I didn't check email, I'd have to read /. instead, and we all know what a productivity suck that is :) The average worker is going to waste a certain amount of time every day - email makes it possible to be somewhat productive during "mental task switching" time which would otherwise be involved in gossiping, smoke breaks, or pranks on coworkers. That's why, even with almost an hour "wasted" on email every day, people are more productive now.

Re:I think this is "piss on email" day. (2)

NMerriam (15122) | more than 13 years ago | (#277028)

well, you could still write the code! It just wouldn't do much...

---------------------------------------------

Re:Man I wish procmail (2)

Surak (18578) | more than 13 years ago | (#277029)

That's not coming until the NEXT version... :)

Re:What is "Bill S.1618 TITLE III" ? (1)

Salgak1 (20136) | more than 13 years ago | (#277031)

S.1618 "The Murkowski Bill" was never passed, and never signed into law. The S.1618 designation identifies it as a bill introduced to the US Senate.

If it had passed, it would be referred to as Public Law XX-YYY, and as a US Code citation, i.e. XX USC YYY (differing values of X and Y for both cases cited above. . .)

Yes, it's FUD. Feel free to ignore it. Any remove that actually hits an address will likely add your address to 6.02x10^23 additional spam lists. . . .

Only 1hr? (1)

trongey (21550) | more than 13 years ago | (#277032)

They say employees waste an hour a day managing e-mail

And seven hours a day posting on /.

Re:What is "Bill S.1618 TITLE III" ? (1)

LennyDotCom (26658) | more than 13 years ago | (#277033)

Those particular e-mails especialy piss me off Those assholes have the balls to tell me that their spam isn't spam? I emeidiatly proccess those through spamcop [spamcop.net]

The older the address, the worse it gets (2)

nasalgoat (27281) | more than 13 years ago | (#277034)

Email addresses were supposed to be the ultimate in portable commmunications - you could read your email everywhere, and you'd have it forever.

But the reality is, the longer you have an email address, the more lists it gets put on, and the more crap you get, until even the filters can't hold back the tide of crap, and you're forced to just give up and get a new address.

I've had this email address since 1995, and let me tell you, I get the craziest crap on a daily basis - probably 80% to 90% of the stuff I get is spam...

Additional Ideas for this (1)

WyldOne (29955) | more than 13 years ago | (#277035)

I was thinking fo something in the same line.

What I wanted to do was use the blocklists that my web proxy uses eg. junkbuster

I also wanted to tie it to my fetchmail. That way I could 'pre-delete' any e-mail i saw on my pop3 account(s) without ever downloading to my site/pc. eg. using subject headers

BTW, you did not say... is this GPL? ;)

Re:What is "Bill S.1618 TITLE III" ? (2)

nutsy (33125) | more than 13 years ago | (#277038)

A copy of S.1618 can be read at the following address:
http://www.techlawjournal.com/congress/slamspam/s1 618es.htm [techlawjournal.com]

As the notice at the top says, the bill never became law, but it probably doesn't surprise anyone that the morons who try to make money fast with unsolicited commercial mail don't know any better than to copy and paste the canned paragraph you quoted!

More about this bill and why the "This message cannot be considered spam" claim is nonsense can be read at:
http://www.profitjump.com/articles/0705-spam.html [profitjump.com]

Research Firm looking for quick hit (2)

iturbide (39881) | more than 13 years ago | (#277039)

In a slowing economy, where businesses are looking for ways to cut costs and increase productivity, simply cutting out unnecessary e-mail will have an immediate impact. What a load of crap. Looks like the "research firm" Gartner is suffering from a slowing economy itself and needs a quick shot in the arm. Oi! Doesn't the preview button work anymore?

OT: junk mail (1)

caffeineboy (44704) | more than 13 years ago | (#277040)

Try this [cdt.org] . I hardly get any junk mail or solicitations anymore. Now, if there were only a way to stop getting junk mail for the previous 10 years of tennants in my apartment...

Slashdot or Email? (1)

jazman_777 (44742) | more than 13 years ago | (#277041)

I avoid wasting time with lots of email by ignoring the email and wasting the time on /.
--

No problem here (2)

SecretAsianMan (45389) | more than 13 years ago | (#277043)

I get 100 to 200 messages a day, and usually no spam. Every one of these messages is relevant in some way to the things that I do or like. Many are the communications between myself and people I'm setting up business transactions with. I don't think that the time I spend reading and answering all of this is wasted time in the least bit. In fact, it is only because of e-mail that I'm able to handle all of this in only an hour or two. Let's imagine what my life would be like if all these contacts had to talk to me on the phone. I would basically have to sit by the phone all day to make myself available to take the calls, and also I would have to deal with constant interruptions. With e-mail, I can handle messages when I want to and actually get other work done. Without e-mail, my productivity would be approximately zero.

--
SecretAsianMan (54.5% Slashdot pure)

All my submissions filtered? (2)

anticypher (48312) | more than 13 years ago | (#277046)

I discovered that over 70% of my email is junk (compared to 25% after all my filters were in place). Filtering my mail is the only thing that makes reading my email possible. Well, that and ignoring any message complaining about Karma

Oh! I figured the best way to get CT's attention was to put a catchy subject line, MAKE MONEY FAST or even INSTANT SLASHDOT KARMA. And now I find the reason not one of my submissions has ever made it is because he filters out such great subject lines. Its good to know that he gets 30% legitimate emails, that tops me.

the AC

Re:mail is great in the workplace (2)

ktakki (64573) | more than 13 years ago | (#277052)

4:30 Break


Shouldn't that be 4:20?

k.
--
"In spite of everything, I still believe that people
are really good at heart." - Anne Frank

Re:I think this is "piss on email" day. (2)

iceT (68610) | more than 13 years ago | (#277053)

this is SO TRUE. I worked as a consultant at a company that used Voice mail like most people use EMAIL. Forwarding Voicemails, the whole nine-yards... some voice mails would be 5 or 10 minutes long! I can scan a long message, looking for the 'key' peices of info, in WAY LESS than 5 minutes.

For me, the only alternative to email would be to communicate less.

Re:This spam is from people you know! (1)

WinstonSmith (69165) | more than 13 years ago | (#277054)

spam is actually from our cow-orkers

The sooner we eradicate the cow orkers from our society, the sooner the SPAM problem will be solved!

Perverted bastards....

Re:Man I wish procmail (1)

selectspec (74651) | more than 13 years ago | (#277059)

No shit. I check my regular mail (which is at the front of my apartment building) about once every two weeks.

Slashdot Filters (2)

selectspec (74651) | more than 13 years ago | (#277060)

Slashdot Employee Email Filters:
  • General Complaints
  • Notices of Mispelings
  • Bad Grammer Files
  • Same story Complaints
  • Goat Sex Pics
  • Goat Sex Pics I want to save
  • Hanson fan club mail
  • CNET news flash emails
  • Microsoft Update Emails
  • Employees, Family, Friends (if I had any)
  • Story Submissions / other Trash

To "defenders of email" (4)

pete-classic (75983) | more than 13 years ago | (#277063)

A lot (or in slashdot-speak alot) of people are say (to paraphrase) "yeah, but without email you'd have to try to reach people on the phone or in person."

I don't think that anyone is debating the usefulness of email. OTOH, people do things (that in my opinion they shouldn't do) via email that they would NEVER do in person or via phone.

At my last job I'd say I got 40 messages a day that had NOTHING to do with work.

To: Everyone[company name withheld]

Subjects:
"Chili cookoff on Friday!" (Reminder number 12)
"Used mattress for sale."
"Marking newsletter for [today]" (that only marketing people care about. EVERY F---ING DAY!)

To: EveryoneAustin[company name withheld]
"Someone [at the building across town] left their lights on."
"Cake in the breakroom [at the building across town]"

Now, I LOVE email. But Merciful God STOP THESE PEOPLE.

Of course these people think this stuff is important, and think they are doing every one a favor. What they fail to realize is that they are wasting my valuable (slashdot) time.

Anyway, that's my rant.

-Peter

Pay me by the email (1)

bgraziano (79486) | more than 13 years ago | (#277066)

At a former employer, management was constantly extolling the virtues of email and it's benefits to the company.

I suggested if that were true they should pay me per email sent and received..

They declined.

I think this is "piss on email" day. (2)

LocalYokel (85558) | more than 13 years ago | (#277067)

And how is this worse than everyone needing to walk to someone else's cubicle, or calling someone on the phone to find that the person is at a meeting or going to the bathroom? You certainly can't attach the latest financial reports to a voicemail.

On the whole, IT definitely leverages your workforce and makes them more productive -- can you imagine how many jobs would be impossible to do without computers these days?

http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/6/18397.htm l

--

Re:Filtering is a technique too many people ignore (1)

duplicate-nickname (87112) | more than 13 years ago | (#277069)

... for example, if the client notices that it gets 100 messages/day and there are no filters it should start to pop up dialogs with suggestions. If the client notices that the user moves a lot of messages from one folder to another it could suggest that the filter rules be tweaked and be helpful in making that happen.

Then we would just get another /. article complaining about bloatware.

ÕÕ

Re:mail is great in the workplace (1)

duplicate-nickname (87112) | more than 13 years ago | (#277070)

Heh...I laugh at those people who think they need to work 70+ hours a week in this field.

ÕÕ

When did cisco _not_ use email? (2)

BierGuzzl (92635) | more than 13 years ago | (#277074)

I mean, for Cisco to trace back to when they did n't use email and use stats from those days to compare to modern day worker productivity, they're going to have to account for a lot more than just the fact that they have email now.

What a crock! (4)

bill.sheehan (93856) | more than 13 years ago | (#277075)

I read this article yesterday and thought, what a crock! Now I've had the opportunity to examine it again in a cold and dispassionate manner, and my option has not changed. This should be printed, run through your horse, and put on your roses. Doesn't anyone remember the paper memo and all the nonsense we had to go through with that (stamping as receiving, filing, writing replies, routing through interoffice mail)? Doesn't anyone remember Telephone Tag?

Look, if workers aren't communicating, there's a problem. E-mail is the least obtrusive, most efficient communications method, bar none. I have enough interruptions in my day without Instant Messaging!

Now, if the Gartner Group were to analyze the amount of time IT workers spend reading Slashdot... Ooops! Gotta run, boss is coming!

Never take a beer to a job interview.

Yes, and it's been said before... (1)

marnanel (98063) | more than 13 years ago | (#277081)

From the article:

Gartner recommended that managers train employees to use e-mail more efficiently, including using distribution lists with caution by sending e-mail to only those who need the information or avoid sending needless responses, such as "I'm with you 100 percent" or "Glad to be of help."

Seems it's true that people often need reminding of old truths. RFC 1855 [isi.edu] , section 3.1.3, said just the same back in 1995:

  • [...] Avoid posting "Me Too" messages, where content is limited to agreement with previous posts. Content of a follow-up post should exceed quoted content.
  • Send mail when an answer to a question is for one person only. Remember that News has global distribution and the whole world probably is NOT interested in a personal response.

Re:What is "Bill S.1618 TITLE III" ? (2)

marnanel (98063) | more than 13 years ago | (#277082)

What's up with that bill ? Is that true or is it just FUD, a lie ? Since i'm not from the US i don't know anything about their laws.

The bill S.1618 [loc.gov] was introduced in 1998, but didn't make it into law. There's more information on this [spamcop.net] at SpamCop [spamcop.net] .

(What's particularly silly about this is that so many of the spammers are outside the US. If, as has happened, I'm in the UK and I get spammed by a guy from the Far East who's faking an address in Latin America, how can what the US Senate might or might not have thought about it be in the least applicable?)

Anyway, if i reply i only get a "user killed" or something similar...

NEVER REPLY, at least, not to the sender. If you do, they'll keep your address on file (and possibly sell it on) because your address is suddenly more valuable for spam-- they'll know there's a real human who's reading mail sent to it. If you really want to complain, you could try mailing abuse@ their ISP: it works, sometimes.

Death to Spam [mindworkshop.com] is a good read on the subject. You might also like to check out the alt.spam FAQ [digital.net] .

Re:It's a damn shame, too (2)

OmegaDan (101255) | more than 13 years ago | (#277085)

Yeah, but if you work in an orginization of BAD LIARS like I do, when you talk to them in person their body langauge can tell you wether they're telling the truth. :)

On the otherside, I'd like to say that Yahoo article was DEFINATLEY junk science.

What is "Bill S.1618 TITLE III" ? (1)

yalla (102708) | more than 13 years ago | (#277086)

I get sometimes spam which claims that this spam isn't even spam. As an evidence for that they post a .signature like that:

This message is sent in compliance with the new email bill section 301. Under Bill S.1618 TITLE III passed by the 105th US Congress, this message cannot be considered SPAM as long as we include the way to be removed, Paragraph (a)(c) of S.1618, further transmissions to you by the sender of this email may be stopped at no cost to you by sending a response of "REMOVE" in the subject line of the email.

What's up with that bill ? Is that true or is it just FUD, a lie ? Since i'm not from the US i don't know anything about their laws.

Anyway, if i reply i only get a "user killed" or something similar...

Any comments about that ?

Studies show several hours a day wasted on /. (1)

mrpull (112590) | more than 13 years ago | (#277089)

An even more recent study shows that *several* hours a day by hackers wasted on /. go figure? mr.

It's a damn shame, too (4)

andy@petdance.com (114827) | more than 13 years ago | (#277090)

The pisser is that email is such a useful business tool, but many people are scared off from it because of the volume of email that they receive.

The asynchronous method of communicating is almost always best in business. I find that 95% of my questions for someone are not time-critical, and can be handled at the other person's convenience (say, in a day or two), and allow me to keep working without having to interrupt my task to go find the person.

Yet I hear so many people say "Oh, I get 30 messages a day!" I say "Yeah, but those are 30 communications you were going to get anyway, but now you can handle them when YOU want, without the other person having to track you down."
--

Re:1 hour 'Wasted' managing email?? (2)

nlvp (115149) | more than 13 years ago | (#277092)

I don't think the argument is that by abolishing email you can increase productivity. I think the message is that by getting people to follow a few guidelines in both sending emails and dealing with the stuff they receive, you can increase productivity even further.

Email is great because it improves communication, but some of that improvement is swallowed up by the time it takes to go through all the additional communication, and the overuse of communication because its become so easy to pass on anything you care to think of to everyone in your company. Exercising a little judgement before hitting the Send button can save a company a lot of time. Mine is going through exactly this kind of exercise at the moment and the increase in efficiency is really a "low hanging fruit" in terms of efficiency gains.

Re:What a crock! (2)

ebh (116526) | more than 13 years ago | (#277093)

Doesn't anyone remember the paper memo and all the nonsense we had to go through

Hear, hear!

Back before spam, I worked at a Very Large Company That Isn't So Large Any More Because They Trivested. At one point, TPTB decided to make each organization separately accountable for its existence--pay your own way--which meant they had to have some tangible internal or external source of funding. This applied to everything from product development to the mailroom.

So, system admin organizations would advertise to try to convince you to let them admin your machines for a fee, that sort of thing. The advertising was in the form of paper that was sent to every single person's (physical) inbox. The worst was the training organization, who would send out a separate piece of paper for every occurrence of every class ("Introduction to vi", May 2, 9:00-5:00). At the worst of it we were getting 2-3 paper adverts per day.

Thousands of reams of paper per year, unread, from the inbox to the recycle bin. Saved them TONS of money. Uh-huh. Right.

'Managing' email (2)

Ronin X (121414) | more than 13 years ago | (#277095)

They say employees waste an hour a day managing e-mail.

An hour a day? Sure, if 'managing email' includes writing recipes to aunt Sally, forwarding the latest virus hoax to EVERYONE YOU KNOW, and deleting all the pr0n spam you get because you surf pr0n at the office.

Re:Man I wish procmail (2)

Ronin X (121414) | more than 13 years ago | (#277096)

You know, with only a little effort, you could probably rig a mailbox that sorts out mail by size and weight. Anything that feels like an ad gets dumped into a shredder, and the shredded paper pours out into the recycling bin sitting in the driveway next to the mailbox...

Or you could describe a riculously impossible to implement Rube Goldberg device [rubegoldberg.com] for karma whore points!

Re:OT: junk mail (1)

stilwebm (129567) | more than 13 years ago | (#277098)

I just return all junk mail from previous tenants. It seems to work too. If you return it with a note on it "No such resident" then the post office will start returning it for you, unless it says "Or Current Resident" in which case you have to hope that the company you return it to takes a hint and takes your address off their list.

Re:I think this is "piss on email" day. (1)

stilwebm (129567) | more than 13 years ago | (#277099)

Exactly. And voicemail only works when we don't answer the phone. If you were expecting someone to call, and instead got several phone calls for issues that can wait, you lose a lot of time. You can read and respond to email when it best fits your schedule, and you can skim it or paste in a form response. You can do a similar thing on the phone, but then you sound insincere or might miss important details and waste more time having the caller repeat details.

What about.... (2)

Otis_INF (130595) | more than 13 years ago | (#277100)

* if workers pee at home and hold up their pee untill they're back home: a lot of time saved which was otherwise spend at the toilets!
* if workers start to camp outside the office instead of driving each morning to work and back in the evening: no more hours wasted in the traffic jam, which can then be spend on business!
* if workers are only allowed to drink water from bottles they have to bring themselves and have to fill at home (or when they're camping outside the office, with rainwater): no more time is wasted at the coffeemachine or watercooler! Which can then be spend on business and work!
* if businesstrips and meetings weren't done face to face but using email: no more time wasted in hotels/planes/dull offices..

oh wait...


--

Re:What is "Bill S.1618 TITLE III" ? (2)

TomV (138637) | more than 13 years ago | (#277102)

If you really want to complain, you could try mailing abuse@ their ISP: it works, sometimes

Yup. I *always* go upstream on them. Seems to be a lot more effective.

Another thing to note. Not everyone checks the 'abuse@' address.

So send to 'sales@' as well. You can be absolutely darn tootin' certain someone's checking that one.

Oddly I learned this one in meatspace, on the phone. *Never* bother with the customer service hotline. It's understaffed and underfunded. Call the sales line and you'll find they're very eager to get you off the line so they can make some money. They can be remarkably helpful.

TomV

What Slashdot Readers REALLY want to know... (1)

The Breeze (140484) | more than 13 years ago | (#277105)

how, and in which gory fashion, did CmdrTaco blow up his laptop?

Perl procmail filter... (2)

don_carnage (145494) | more than 13 years ago | (#277109)

I posted this before in a previous discussion about spam, thought it would be relevant here.

I have a little Perl program that does all of my filtering based on rules in a block file. Bascially, if the mail is not directly sent to me, or it's not in my block/pass list, then it gets dumped into a "potential-spam" folder (you can just send it to /dev/null if ya want.)

Email me if you have any problems with it, or have questions.

--

Re:Additional Ideas for this (2)

don_carnage (145494) | more than 13 years ago | (#277110)

You can use it, hack it to pieces, whatever. I guess that falls under the premise of GPL so I'll update it to reflect that.

The problem with using the JunkBuster, is that spammers usually use "borrowed" SMTP servers and very rarely link themselves back to a domain.

As for fetchmail...I'm not sure...anyone?
--

Re:To "defenders of email" (1)

Geo++ (151072) | more than 13 years ago | (#277111)

Gartner recommended that managers train employees to use e-mail more efficiently, including using distribution lists with caution by sending e-mail to only those who need the information or avoid sending needless responses, such as "I'm with you 100 percent" or "Glad to be of help." Gartner also said chat rooms, bulletin boards and instant messaging can prove to be more efficient than e-mail when employees are working in teams.

I'm not so sure I agree that short 'thank you' or acknowledgement email is really that harmful. After all, how long does it take to read one line and click delete.

Lots of mail increases producivity (3)

clare-ents (153285) | more than 13 years ago | (#277112)

Email massively improves productivity.

Most middle managers spend all day emailling their friends and contracting email viruses rather than irritating the socks off the engineers in extremely long boring meetings.

Anything that takes up manager time is bound to improved productivity.

Re:Yes, and it's been said before... (1)

Bosconian (158140) | more than 13 years ago | (#277113)

I'm with you 100 percent.

That sounds about right... (3)

Saint Aardvark (159009) | more than 13 years ago | (#277114)

I work at a small/mid-sized ISP, and one of my jobs is to keep an eye on the procmail filter we run to try and catch spam. It staggers me how much we catch: right now we've got about 8000 messages -- *31 megs* -- that we've caught in maybe three days (ands that's just the ones we can catch w/o collateral damage).

A lot of our customer's are in Canada's Bible Belt (Abbotsford, Chilliwack, Mission -- British Columbia), and let me tell you: you haven't heard moral outrage until you've heard an offended Xtian mother complain about receiving Hot Slippery Teens in her mailbox...

Re:Man I wish procmail (1)

AntiPasto (168263) | more than 13 years ago | (#277117)

woah... me too... 'course that's 'cause i'm probably spending too much time at my GF's but heck I like her, ya know? heh.

----

Man I wish procmail (4)

AntiPasto (168263) | more than 13 years ago | (#277118)

...worked on the box at the end of my driveway.

----

Memo: Unnecessary E-mail (5)

L Fitzgerald Sjoberg (171091) | more than 13 years ago | (#277119)

We, the upper management of eSourceTec Inc., have discovered that employees have been wasting valuable time dealing with unnecessary e-mail. Here are the steps we are taking to eliminate this waste of time and energy:

1. All employees will be required to attend a series of company meetings on the subject of "Eliminating Unnecessary E-mail."

2. Following these meetings, employees will be required to attend department specific "E-Mail Task Force" meetings to come up with specific strategies for eliminating unnecessary e-mail.

3. Each day, employees will be required to send e-mail to their managers summarizing the amount and type of e-mail they have sent that day, flagging any e-mail exchanges that they feel could have been shortened or eliminated.

4. On a weekly basis, managers will have a one-on-one session with each employee in which they discuss how well e-mail strategies have been implemented, and what new strategies might be employed in the elimination of unnecessary e-mail.

We feel confident that these steps will drastically reduce the amount of time spent each day on pointless and unnecessary tasks, and lead our company into new strata of efficiency.

Regards,
D. R. Baskerville
Vice-President, Attention Allocation Resources

Re:Well shit! (1)

John Jorsett (171560) | more than 13 years ago | (#277120)

Silly engineers. We should keystroke monitor them to see how much code they're writing per minute, and just pay them per line of code. God it's great to be a middle manager!

This was actually tried in a few places, with the predictable results. One that I'm aware of even counted comments, which resulted in the most extensively documented code in the history of programming (notice I didn't say 'best' documented code).

I've never had a problem (2)

lpontiac (173839) | more than 13 years ago | (#277121)

But then, I'm a very quick reader in general.

When reading email, I also tend to skimread first and then dig deeper for any relevant details. And I'm somewhat used to automatically filtering out anything irrelevant, like re-re-re-quoted material. What does slow me down when reading email is that it's often plagued by errors in spelling, grammar and even basic punctuation.

I'm also not terribly long-winded when I myself send out email. I make sure my spelling is correct - again, I'm fortunate in this regard as far as natural skills are concerned. I think that overall, each second extra spent when composing an email saves at least two seconds at the recipient's end.

Plenty of jobs require you to have good communications skills, and "telephone skills" are often cited as necessary when a job is advertised. I wonder when "email skills" (you could even say "written word skills"!) will receive as high a priority?

Re:Yes, and it's been said before... (1)

Golias (176380) | more than 13 years ago | (#277122)

Me too.

Spam filter list (2)

Alien54 (180860) | more than 13 years ago | (#277124)

There is this spam filter list [au.com] that some guy put together for Outlook. [Warning, the webpage is pretty hideous]

All said, the file is in text file format and is a simple list of spammer addresses, which I am sure someone could convert/import to the format needed.

The nice thing is that people send him the names of spammers. And so it is constantly updated.

Check out the Vinny the Vampire [eplugz.com] comic strip

Re:What is "Bill S.1618 TITLE III" ? (2)

Alien54 (180860) | more than 13 years ago | (#277125)

A bill is a *proposed* law - it is not a law in itself.

This one was never signed into law. You can read more about it at http://techlawjournal.com/telecom/81022.htm [techlawjournal.com] .

Also, the following interesting discussion was posted here [jerrypournelle.com] :

I opened a piece of Spam mail this morning and got this:

Under Bill s.1618 Title III passed by the 105th U.S. Congress this mail cannot be considered Spam as long as we include contact information and removal instructions for removing you from our mailing list. To be removed from our mailing list, reply with REMOVE in the subject heading and your email address in the body, and include complete address and/or domain to be removed. <<

Have you received an email with one of these statements yet?

Let me see if I can translate it for you.

We are going to send you a ton of email whether you like it or not. Get off our backs. If you don't like it, get yourself off our lists.<<

Does that sound about right?

Well then! I guess I'd better read it. The information contained herein must be of some importance since the information has the A-OK under federal law.

Wait. Federal law?

If I remember my Saturday morning School House Rock episode correctly, for something to become a law, it has to be passed by both the House AND the Senate plus a really important person has to sign it.

It must be a law then, right? The Spammers are using it. They wouldn't lie, would they?

It would seem that enough time has passed for the president to sign the bill into law. It's been two years. We're in the 107th Congress now. I've never heard of a law allowing people to Spam me.

Hey - wait a minute. Maybe there never was a Bill S1618. I mean, it's not a law.

Darn.

There was a bill S1618 back in 1998. It passed by a 99-0 voice vote. It's called the "Anti-Slamming Amendments Act". There was even a House of Representatives equal to it, HR3888. It also passed.

The Senate version of the bill stated that S1618 was, "To amend the Communications Act of 1934 to improve the protection of consumers against `slamming' by telecommunications carriers, and for other purposes."

Hey! Wait a minute.

"Slamming"?

Is the Congress a bunch of really poor spellers...like me?

I thought this was a bill about Spamming.

Well, it is. It's just not the main push of the bill. You don't get to "Spamming" until title three. It's right in there between "Switchless Resellers" and "Miscellaneous Provisions". The Spamming section is an amendment to the amendment. There were actually four versions of bill S1618. The Spamming section didn't show up until the third incarnation. (Source: http://thomas.loc.gov )

But still, it was passed. It was passed containing the Spamming amendment so it's on the books so we all have to receive the Spam emails sent to us by people we don't even know as long as the Spammers follow S1618 Title III outlined below:

TITLE III-SPAMMING

SEC. 301. REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO TRANSMISSIONS OF UNSOLICITED COMMERCIAL ELECTRONIC MAIL.

(a) INFORMATION TO BE INCLUDED IN TRANSMISSIONS- (1) IN GENERAL- A person who transmits an unsolicited commercial electronic mail message shall cause to appear in each such electronic mail message the information specified in paragraph (2). (2) COVERED INFORMATION- The following information shall appear at the beginning of the body of an unsolicited commercial electronic mail message under paragraph (1): (A) The name, physical address, electronic mail address, and telephone number of the person who initiates transmission of the message. (B) The name, physical address, electronic mail address, and telephone number of the person who created the content of the message, if different from the information under subparagraph (A). (C) A statement that further transmissions of unsolicited commercial electronic mail to the recipient by the person who initiates transmission of the message may be stopped at no cost to the recipient by sending a reply to the originating electronic mail address with the word `remove' in the subject line. (b) ROUTING INFORMATION- All Internet routing information contained within or accompanying an electronic mail message described in subsection (a) must be accurate, valid according to the prevailing standards for Internet protocols, and accurately reflect message routing. (c) EFFECTIVE DATE- The requirements in this section shall take effect 30 days after the date of enactment of this Act.

In other words, include the paragraph that started off this newsletter and offer a viable method to getting your name off of the Spammer's list. Do that, and you can Spam away because technically what you're sending cannot be considered Spam.

This sounds too bad to be true.

Great! Just great! Now I have to allow a ton of Spam to come flying through my front door and I have to read it all because the Spammers have the power of the U.S. Government behind them. It just cheeses me off. I mean...it...

Wait. What's this?

S1618 died in committee?

That means that it's null and void? It's dead? It doesn't have any power?

Oh. The Spammer never bothered to tell me that.

Never mind.

I'll just go delete that piece of mail.

(The death of S1618 in committee: Source: http://techlawjournal.com/telecom/81022.htm )

That's that. Thanks for reading.

Check out the Vinny the Vampire [eplugz.com] comic strip

Re:mail is great in the workplace (1)

hyperstation (185147) | more than 13 years ago | (#277126)

damn, is your company hiring?

--

Here's a great spam solution. (1)

AintTooProudToBeg (187954) | more than 13 years ago | (#277127)

I own my own domain domain.com

I have all mail (*@domain.com) forward to my real account. When I sign up at latimes.com and they want my email address, I tell them latimes.com@domain.com. Ditto for ebay and the others. When ebay screwed me over [slashdot.org] , I configured sendmail to bounce any email addressed to ebay.com@domain.com.

It's fun too, because you can see which companies sell your email address... (latimes.com is the only one I've caught so far). I no longer live in fear of spam.

Most people hide behind e-mail and voice mail. (1)

nooekanami (192720) | more than 13 years ago | (#277131)

Classic "misuse of e-mail" situations: 1. two workers, sitting exactly one cubicle apart, exchange e-mail about a project/meeting/presentation. Why? Because they want to avoid having to confront one another and gasp, actually make eye contact. 2. CYA - Cover your Ass. Document the heck out of every thing you do in the office. And what better tool than e-mail to do this (Bill: Bob, this is to confirm the receipt of your mail in response to my mail about the excess hours reported on the time sheet. Bob: Bill, re your mail about my response to your mail about the time sheets...ad infinitum) 3. Imprecise communication - "did you say the conference call was at 8:30AM CST or EST?" 4. Oops- forgot the attachment! 5. Revised version of the last budget spreadsheet - ignore the previous version. 6. Reply All 7. Bcc your boss on every little thing 8. Accidental "to all employees" type mail shots 9. Intentional "to all employees" type mail shots - "w.e.f April 21, no more pizzas", "w.e.f Jan 1, all expenses shall be..." blah blah blah. Most office communication should be done face to face or over the phone, not e-mail. Really important issues are *always* communicated in person.

solutions ?almost. Re:Obvious solution: (1)

leuk_he (194174) | more than 13 years ago | (#277132)

I did this.

(spam it to me me at "test2201@hotmail.com" [mailto] , the default hotmail filters move 66 % to bulk(=spam) mail. > 10 msd per day).

But it seems spammers have worked arround this by linesniffing. If your account gets older more and more leaks occur. I wonder how people on highly visible web sites manage. Is there any GOOD antispam software that can handle multiple pop3 accounts?

If there is a return addres i do send them a reply, of coarse with a fake email adress. They take my time --> i take time from them. I try to prevent accessing web sites since they might get paid for every hit. And hey, i already know where to find porn on the internet.

Only one hour? (2)

sulli (195030) | more than 13 years ago | (#277133)

My whole damn day is spent emailing!

Is it me, or... (1)

ZeLonewolf (197271) | more than 13 years ago | (#277134)

Is it me, or is this just a blatant ad for Cisco? "Yay, we're Cisco, look how efficient we can be, blah, blah, blah..."

Re:How to fight spam (1)

Urd (198177) | more than 13 years ago | (#277135)

That particular trick is called: a DOS-attack.

Urd.

It all comes down to filtering and cleaning (2)

Urd (198177) | more than 13 years ago | (#277136)

In the past 10 years as an internet user I've gone trough many aspects of the use of internet. Regardless, I deal with some 600 emails a day and find time for my regular activities in between. Of course the worst things always is coming back from vacation and catching up with the backlog of emails that built up when you were out. That always seems to take a day. Still I would claim email, on average doesn't take more then 10% of my time these days.

Anyway, I think there is a method to successful email management:
1. use filters (server based filtering like procmail works best but use whatever you can get your hands on.)
2. clean and review your filters regularly (otherwise you will end up filtering something you wanted to keep around.)
3. do not check out the spam you get (this usually just solicits more spam.)
4. check your mail regularly (it's better to spend 5 times 5 minutes a day reading/replying then spending an hour. This will help you stay focussed.)
5. Be critical (after the 5th email with a guy, take the phone and end the discussion that way.)
6. Once a month, throw the old trash out. (Keeping your mail spools to reasonable size will improve your chances of finding relevant information in it!)
7. If you're on a mailing list you'd like to get off: unsubscribe (try it, it usually works.)
8. Be carefull who you give your email address to.

Happy mailing!
Urd.

Blaming e-mail is misdirected (3)

mblase (200735) | more than 13 years ago | (#277140)

The survey, which asked workers about their e-mail and instant messaging habits, found that 34 percent of the internal business e-mail they receive is unnecessary. The survey also said that only 27 percent of the e-mail that workers receive demands their immediate attention.

Most employees I know would say that about 50% of the meetings they attend are unnecessary, and that only 10% of the discussions I hear in meetings demand any of my attention at all. Any dissenting opinions? No?

E-mail is a huge advantage, then, in that it gives me the power to delete memos and announcements that aren't important to me in just a few seconds, instead of having to throw away dead trees or walk in and out of useless meetings that do the same.

I say, viva la company e-mail. We'll always have to deal with useless intra-office crap, but at least with e-mail we can deal with it in the most efficient and least wasteful way possible (well, unless you're the network administrator).

Free e-mail Services and Spam (1)

jpm242 (202316) | more than 13 years ago | (#277142)

This question is somewhat related to the subject.

I've had the same e-mail address for quite a few years now and I recieve more spam than actual messages I want/expect. Most of the spam I get is from accounts at hotmail or whatever simmilar service. Some spammers seem to have scripts to create multiple accounts on these sites and abuse them quite easily.

I was wondering, since Napster's been accused of knowingly providing technology that facilitates illegal activity, couldn't the same logic be applied to free e-mail services? I mean, spam is illegal right? Couldn't a lawsuit force them to enforce certain restrictions that would minimize the abuse of their systems, thus minimizing the overall quantity of junkmail we get...

?

Re:Here's a great spam solution. (2)

KevinMS (209602) | more than 13 years ago | (#277151)

sneakemail does the same thing, but you dont need a domain

bogosity alert: the article contradicts itself! (2)

Preposterous Coward (211739) | more than 13 years ago | (#277152)

Employees waste nearly an hour a day managing work e-mails, according to a new survey.

But wait:
workers spend an average of 49 minutes per day managing e-mail....34 percent of the internal business e-mail they receive is unnecessary

Um, the reporter (or maybe it's the actual Gartner people) needs to take a remedial math class. 34% times 49 minutes is 17 minutes per day, not remotely "nearly an hour". Presumably the other time spent managing e-mail is productive. I know plenty of people who waste more than 17 minutes a day smoking or chatting by the water cooler or exchanging pleasantries on the phone or reading the sports section in the men's room. What's the big deal here?

Yes, some people use e-mail really inefficiently. I think all managers should train employees two fundamental principles of e-mail etiquette:

  • Never use Reply to All when a reply to the sender alone would do.
  • Use informative subject lines so people can see instantly whether your message requires immediate attention or not.

I expect that those two guidelines alone would eliminate 90%+ of the "wasted" time.

I know the problem... (1)

unperson (223869) | more than 13 years ago | (#277161)

but it ain't email! If someone really wants to get the geeks working, they'd implement a NetNanny style filter for /.

mail is great in the workplace (5)

unformed (225214) | more than 13 years ago | (#277163)

Having lots of mail is extremely useful on the job. For example, at my last job, my schedule would go like this:

12:00 Get to work (I have classes, so I was allowed to be late) drop my cds in my office, turn on my computer
12:15 Go on break with friends, recount last days events
12:45 Go back to office, check mail
1:15 Go on break, talk about email and office rumors
1:45 Go back to office and eat lunch
2:15 Cigarrette break
2:45 Reread mail to make sure I didn't miss anything
3:15 Look for work
3:30 Cigarrette break
3:45 Try to find a manager to get work to do
4:15 Found manager, got work
4:30 Break
4:45 Begin working
5:00 Leave unfinished work for tomorrow
5:15 Break
5:45 Relax
6:15 Read email sent today
6:45 Turn off computer
7:00 Break
7:45 Go home

If it wasn't for email, I would've had to actually work

This spam is from people you know! (1)

Daath (225404) | more than 13 years ago | (#277164)

Just yesterday I read a simialr article [idg.net] on IDG.net [idg.net] - it's about how most our spam is actually from our cow-orkers and friends. Aparently they have no idea of what's important or not ;)
At least I get fewer emails with 2mb powerpoint presentations than I did last year :)
Give it a read!

Poor man's spam filter (1)

WickedClean (230550) | more than 13 years ago | (#277168)

I found a little trick you can do by creating a rule in Outlook Express.

Just make a rule that says if the text "in the subject line" appears anywhere in the message, to automatically delete it. A lot of emails come with that "to be removed, reply to this email with REMOVE in the subject live".

I've found that it works pretty well.

Re:'Managing' email (1)

acceleriter (231439) | more than 13 years ago | (#277169)

deleting all the pr0n spam you get because you surf pr0n at the office

I know it was just an example, and there are people who cause their own problems. However, I don't think we should help perpetuate the myth that anyone who gets spam for "HOT NEKKID T33NZ" has gone looking for porn. This is the kind of thinking that leads to blaming victims of spam, unjustified workplace actions, and other nastiness. Those scum will get email addresses any way they can, including trying all plausible usernames in a domain, and they don't have to come from newbies filling in forms on porn sites. Let's not blame the poor guy (after all, we all know women don't look at porn) that gets a porn spam--he's probably innocent.

Re:What is "Bill S.1618 TITLE III" ? (2)

J'raxis (248192) | more than 13 years ago | (#277173)

The bill was never passed by the U.S. Congress:

U.S. Senate Bill 1618, an Anti-slamming Amendments Act, contained a Section 301, relating to transmissions of unsolicited commercial electronic mail. S.1618 was approved by the U.S. Senate on May 12, 1998. It was then referred to the House Committee on Commerce on October 21, 1998. The Bill DIED in committee and was never passed into law by the 105th Congress. Nor has the 106th Congress passed anything similar at this time.

-- http://www.d-pendablelibrary.com/reinboldcongress. htm [d-pendablelibrary.com]

More information on the bill:

http://easyweb.easynet.co.uk/~gcaselton/spam/bill- s1618.html [easynet.co.uk]

Google Search [google.com]

Also: DON'T REPLY TO THE SPAMMERS "REMOVE" ADDRESSES. "Remove" addresses are almost always just a drop box to confirm the validity of your email address so they know whom to spam next time.


...I am the Raxis.

Re:Off to pub! (1)

K-map (258250) | more than 13 years ago | (#277175)

Wrong intoxicant! Today's 4/20 - smoke some pot!

Re: yr. sig (1)

K-map (258250) | more than 13 years ago | (#277176)

Unless you're applying to a brewery.
PS - It's 4/20 - smoke a joint today!

1 hour 'Wasted' managing email?? (1)

tonywestonuk (261622) | more than 13 years ago | (#277177)

Managing Email is PART OF THE WORK we do. This is like saying Java wastes time Garbage Collecting, or Linux users waste time compiling their kernal. Without email productivity falls. Managing it is an integral part of using it in the first place.

i did a little experiment... (1)

yetiman (262330) | more than 13 years ago | (#277178)

I created a new email adress on my domain name, and tested to see whether or not i would still get spam to it, even though i hadn't advertised or provided the address to anyone. Low and behold, a couple of weeks later, i was getting spam!!! I must be cursed, the gods of mail are frowning upon me!

Email = wasted time is old paradigm (2)

gentlewizard (300741) | more than 13 years ago | (#277180)

I always cringe a little when I hear a client (usually male) say that he won't give users email at the desktop because "it will waste too much time." Usually, these are older business owners/managers who are operating from a time-clock paradigm of what it means to "work." These are the same people who complain if someone talks to coworkers at the water cooler.

More and more, businesses are realizing the importance of the informal networks within a company (as opposed to the formal org chart.) As stated in The Cluetrain Manifesto, business is conversation, both within the company and between company and its customers. Email is the killer app for the Internet because it facilitates these conversations. Just as in real life, not all conversations are especially useful. But that's okay. You get clues about who people are and how they like to communicate, even if the substance of the message isn't on target.

I'll grant that anything can be abused, including time at the water cooler. Some email netiquette would go a long way to reducing the problem. But having said that, I think that on balance, letting people be people and communicate like people may seem to be wasting time, but it's not really. It's building a community.

Re:Memo: Unnecessary E-mail (2)

markmoss (301064) | more than 13 years ago | (#277181)

Darn, I'm out of mod points. This is very funny -- and unfortunately, I'm sure some corporations are actually putting out memos much like this. Yes, I spend an hour a day on e-mail; 50 minutes of that is dealing with real company business. If those people had to track me down on the phone or come over to my desk (1) I wouldn't get much else done between the interruptions, and (2) they'd be wasting many hours, because either my phone would be busy, there'd be a line forming at my desk, or I'd be off at someone else's desk waiting for him or her to get off the phone.

Re:Yeah, but now we know the CEO is illiterate (2)

markmoss (301064) | more than 13 years ago | (#277182)

True, sometimes. We used to have a corporate VP whose memos sounded worse than an impromptu Bush speech. The top (and only) MIS guy here finally printed one out, edited it with blue and red pencil for spelling, grammar, and nonsense, and posted it on his office door. He didn't know the VP was about to fly up here for a visit...

Remarkably, that VP is long gone, and the MIS guy is still here. 8-)

Sell your timeshare or vacation home today! (1)

BIGJIMSLATE (314762) | more than 13 years ago | (#277188)

I feel sorry for the blokes that actually bit into this shit that piles up in our boxes. Seriously, it MUST be working well enough for people to spend the time and money doing it, AND risk any fines assosciated with spamming.

If someone sends out 1,000,000 messages, and only 2 act on selling their timeshare or vaction home (or whatever it is), they'll start to get the message that "Whoa, this doesn't work". But when a few thousand act on it, they're like "Sweet, cheaper than advertising!"

So to those shitheads out there (who probably have no clue what /. is, I'm talking to a bunch of Base and Goat-heads), STOP BUYING THIS SHIT AND THE SPAM WILL STOP. You're MAKING it work!

Spam? I don't get no stinkin' spam! (1)

mooniejohnson (319145) | more than 13 years ago | (#277190)

This is really kinda strange. I spend 50-60% of my day on the Internet. I fill out so many forms that require your name, it would make your head spin. My emal address is posted on hundreds of assorted web sites. I don't use filters, and I rarely delete email. I thought this was a recipe for spam, but I get none. No spam. Strange, isn't it?

Re:I think this is "piss on email" day. (2)

infinite9 (319274) | more than 13 years ago | (#277192)

Hah! You're telling me! I write code all day. My job would be impossible without computers!

Re:Man I wish procmail (2)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 13 years ago | (#277198)

You know, with only a little effort, you could probably rig a mailbox that sorts out mail by size and weight. Anything that feels like an ad gets dumped into a shredder, and the shredded paper pours out into the recycling bin sitting in the driveway next to the mailbox...

Re:mail is great in the workplace (1)

Magumbo (414471) | more than 13 years ago | (#277200)

Yes. I'm the same way, except s/email/Slashdot/g; You gotta love it, 60k/yr and I do less than in my high school and college days. Ahhhhh. *belch*

I just thank god the people I work for don't know how easy it is to whip up perl scripts to do all the work.

--

Re:No problem here (1)

iron_weasel (415177) | more than 13 years ago | (#277202)

Of course.

Your that scuznut at the top of the food chain
whose ideas are ohhh so Awesome. You have 'dimbo the elephant boy' down beneath your desk filtering
the quasimodo garbage so your purity can be maintained.

You never will be part of the world. You dwell in 'never-neverland' and eat quiche and ferns.

"Lets talk about American High".."duhhhh ok..dohhh

Re:Email = wasted time is old paradigm (1)

iron_weasel (415177) | more than 13 years ago | (#277203)

Yah but usually he's right. Its shitheads fishing for tidbits to use on someone or find out new buzzwords so they can keep swimming the food chain or find out where the next useless meeting called by some suit who doesn't know squat but thinks he risen far enough to actually call his own meetings to discuss and try to find out what people are saying around the water coolers since his boss thinks people are talking about him behind his back.

Some time the reality is real..iron weasel

Heres the drill (2)

iron_weasel (415177) | more than 13 years ago | (#277204)

The big guy at the top has a stupid idea. He has a PC at his desk. He sends the idea via email to his subordinates. They spawn it to the underlings beneath who do the same ,,,etc. It finally reaches everyone in the corporation and along the way has been BCC and re-worded numerous times. Comments like AWESOME, FANTASTIC, WE GOTT DO THIS, ad nauseum have been added via kiss-ass mode guppies and bimbo "take my body" chicklets til its 10 times its previous size. Hours even days of productivity are wasted and the big guy or whoever thinks he has the importance to actually make a decison has even forgotten the idea and if someone brings it up he kills it as stupid. More emails are generated as a result. The game continues for weeks with more interspersed stupid email brainfarts. Only the few souls in IT have no time to even open their mail actually do some productive work and keep the organization running. The rest of the drones are useless except to croon and curry favor with the upperlings up the food chain. This is part of the reason for the dotcom scenario and why it burst and why it will be back. Solution: Remove or render useless the PC on the desk of the upperling/s. Most useless dorks will then transfer out or quit in confusion or fear of being found out. This WILL NOT HAPPEN. Lets talk about American High..duhhhhhh wat dat?

what am I doing right? (2)

redcup (441955) | more than 13 years ago | (#277205)

I have never felt overwhelmed by e-mail.
  1. I take care to write only meaningful e-mails. And only when a phone call or voicemail won't suffice.
  2. Don't CC/BCC people unless they *need* to be.
  3. If it's important - call first, then briefly summarize via e-mail to prevent any confusion.
  4. Ignore e-mail that is irrelivant
  5. If I ignore something important, they'll call me or talk to me in person. Eventually they will learn to write better e-mail if they want me to read it.

Yeah, but now we know the CEO is illiterate (1)

Ratatoskr (442452) | more than 13 years ago | (#277206)

Oh, but it's worth every minute of it. Time was, the Big Guys had secretaries who filtered all their outgoing communications; tidying up the grammar, fixing the spelling, giving them a cooling-off period for the crankygrams. Once we got email, these guys started generating their OWN memos--live and unedited.

Turns out, the boys at the top are mostly a bunch of petty, illiterate maroons.

Well shit! (3)

sllort (442574) | more than 13 years ago | (#277207)

Let's eliminate email, so that all those employees will instead spend that nearly an hour a day talking to the people they used to email!!

We've got MBA's and we're brilliant!!!

Why do those engineers think they have to communicate with each other to write code? Silly engineers. We should keystroke monitor them to see how much code they're writing per minute, and just pay them per line of code. God it's great to be a middle manager!

mass distribution (1)

columbus (444812) | more than 13 years ago | (#277210)

I think the problem really comes down to mass distribution being (essentially) free for email. The ammount of physical junk mail you get presumably has limits based on the fact that it actually costs these people something (even if it's small) to send it to you. I think the trick is to use email for person to person communications, and avoid mass distribution entirely. I get about 3 email messages a day. None of it is spam.
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