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Email Addiction Runs Rampant

CmdrTaco posted more than 9 years ago | from the i'd-read-the-article-but-I-gotta-read-my-email-first dept.

Communications 425

Rollie Hawk writes "Are you addicted to email? According to the Opinion Research Corporation, the odds are pretty good that you are. Their study of 4,012 adults in the twenty largest U.S. cities found that 41% of respondents start the day by checking their email. On the average, respondents admitted to checking their email five times a day. Respondents also mentioned email features they wish were available. Examples included the ability to retract unread messages (45%) and a way to track the forwarding of their own email (43%). Just how addicted are the email-dependent among us? So heavily that one quarter of respondents won't go more than two or three days without it. Of course, by those standards, most Americans must be addicted to work, sex, and TV as well."

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I can't check my email! (0, Redundant)

idontgno (624372) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696653)

I'm addicted to "refresh" on this article!

" Nothing for you to see here. Please move along. "

Re:I can't check my email! (2)

MutantHamster (816782) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696768)

They're addicted because they check E-mail 5 times a day? Oh my God! I eat food 5 times a day some times too! I must be addicted to food! And I read more than that! I'm addicted to reading! Not to mention I talk, answer the phone, breathe, move... oh my God! I'm addicted to everything!

Re:I can't check my email! (5, Funny)

nocomment (239368) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696800)

I'm also addicted to putting on clothes, showering, brushing my teeth, and scratching my balls. I won't go 3 days without doing any of those.

Re:I can't check my email! (1)

Enigma_Man (756516) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696836)

You don't say! I have a horrible breakfast, lunch, and dinner addiction. I also check my e-mail approximately 480 times a day (once a minute every minute).

-Jesse

Re:I can't check my email! (1)

orangesquid (79734) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696850)

Yeah, I was about to say, what about those damned FOOD and WATER addictions?

it's been 21 days since i checked email... (1)

professorhojo (686761) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696656)

it's pretty frightening when you can google up a 12-step recovery program for sex addiction, substitute the word "sex" for "email" and it still kind of works.

my favorite steps:

1. Admitted we were powerless over [what ever your affliction] and that our lives were unmanageable

2. Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

8. Made a list of persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.

good god. where to begin?

Re:it's been 21 days since i checked email... (1)

BoomerSooner (308737) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696709)

Jesus saves. Moses invests.

People need assurance that they are doing the correct thing. 12 step programs work the same way a mob mentality does. Sweeping you up into the land of stupidity.

People need to realize they create their own reality (be it real or phantom/faith based) and your choices are your own.

Re:it's been 21 days since i checked email... (2, Insightful)

roche (135922) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696730)

The thing is though, addiction is considered a disease. I will wait until someone from the medical field says that this addiction exists.

Call me crazy, but I do not trust a marketing company when it comes to identifying possibile addictions.

Re:it's been 21 days since i checked email... (1)

_Sprocket_ (42527) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696798)

8. Made a list of persons we had harmed and became willing to make amends to them all.

Is it following these steps if you send out an email to your entire address book saying:

Sorry for all the email. To make amends, I've included a link to Crazy Frog Axel F.

Re:it's been 21 days since i checked email... (1)

Ubergrendle (531719) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696834)

The 12 step program is pseudo science at best. Ultimately if the individual either faces enough social pressure (e.g. court sentence) or has the strength of will to go through the 12 step process, they could quit a habit of their own.

Your example prooves it... insert "sex", "drugs", "e-mail", "eating", whatever you wish; most likely the 'method' is adaptable. Of course if the process is so generic as to be applicable to anything, its most likely a truism and actually has little inherent value.

Re:it's been 21 days since i checked email... (1)

LSD-OBS (183415) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696861)

12-Stepping (a la Alcoholics Anonymous) or, in this case, 8-stepping, are totally Bullshit! [tvtome.com] anyway.

Hmm, strange to remember that some people actually have to check their email. All my accounts notify me. If it takes the average person 1 minutes to check their email, then you could say I check mine 960 times a day.

That doesn't make me an addict - that makes me normal :)

Addicted..? Nope .. I think not.. wait... (1)

guyfromindia (812078) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696660)

I think i just got an email.. see ya! :)

addicted (1)

P3NIS_CLEAVER (860022) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696661)

I guess i am addicted to driving to/from work according to their criteria.

Sooo.... (5, Insightful)

leonmergen (807379) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696664)

... if reading my email every morning is an addiction, what's the difference between "addiction" and "daily routine" ?

Re:Sooo.... (3, Funny)

idontgno (624372) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696680)

A lot of addicts ask this.

"It's not an addiction, slugging back 4 fingers of gin as I get out of bed is just part of my daily routine!"

Re:Sooo.... (1)

Skye16 (685048) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696749)

That doesn't change anything. I brush my teeth every day. Does that mean I'm addicted to toothpaste?

Re:Sooo.... (1)

Maniakes (216039) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696767)

If your routine action has a significant net negative effect on your quality of life or that of the people around you, it is a "problem habit".

If your brain chemistry has altered itself so you need your routine action to approximate homeostasis, it is an "addition".

If neither of the above conditions apply, it's just a harmless part of your daily routine.

Re:Sooo.... (1)

brontus3927 (865730) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696858)

Exactly. Unfortunately, by that definition, I am addicted to email, napping at work, and slashdot. If it's been 2 hours since I last checked slashdot, I simply cannot concentrate on my work at all, I need to read the latest commments.

Re:Sooo.... (1)

eht (8912) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696706)

Exactly, how is this any different than checking your voice mail messages or reading the newspaper?

I do most of my communication with coworkers via email, so of course I check it a couple times a day. I also listen to my voice mails whenever I notice a new one (not always stuck behind a desk).

Re:Sooo.... (1)

Leroy_Brown242 (683141) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696708)

One makes a good article, one is boring and nobody cares. :)

Re:Sooo.... (4, Funny)

Shky (703024) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696739)

"Daily Routine" is hardly a good buzzword..

Re:Sooo.... (1)

rjordan (640052) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696746)

Well said - as far as I can tell an addiction is painful to quit. I enjoy going to Belize and being without email for a week or two - once the panic has settled down. But if I go without a coke my head is pounding by day three. I am addicted to Caffeine. EMail has just become integrated with my life.

Re:Sooo.... (1)

saitoh (589746) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696770)

control is essentially it. You can generally control a routine, where as an addiction is more or less outside of your control (smoking, drugs, even sex addicts cant go for more then a couple of days without engaging in their vice of choice).

There are other differing attributes and examples, but in a nutshell, thats the gist of it.

Re:Sooo.... (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696797)

And if you check your answering machine when you get home, you're addicted to the Telephone! Ahoy-hoy!

Re:Sooo.... (1)

brontus3927 (865730) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696806)

an addiction is something you do because you NEED to. a routine is something you do becuase its a habit and it needs to get done.

If you have 6 email addresses and you check them as soon as you wake up, as soon as you get to work, several times during the day at work, as soon as you get home, after dinner, just before going to bed, and at random times in between, then it might be considered an addiction

Also addicted to: (1)

Mr Guy (547690) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696820)

I too am addicted to email! I do it constantly and am even notified if emails come in! I'm also, clearly, addicted to the following:

* Using restroom
* Saving, compiling, and testing incremental changes to code base
* Checking to see if additional bugs have been assigned to me
* Walking my dogs
* Eating
* Listening to "Morning Edition"
* Checking weather before walking to my car

I need government sponsored action and possibly a large lawsuit!

Re:Sooo.... (1)

KillerDeathRobot (818062) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696914)

Well since this is Slashdot, I obviously didn't RTFA, but if the summary is accurate, this study is moronic.

I check my email regularly because I get email regularly. I occasionally forget to open Thunderbird in the morning (I leave it open and watch the notifications) and then I miss a bunch of important emails and wonder what's going on.

I don't doubt that some people are addicted to email. But it sounds to me like the indicators the study used are ridiculous. As you say, checking your email in the morning can easily just be part of your routine (which you could stop doing easily if there were a compelling reason to do so). Oh no, I have my email open all day! I must be addicted!

Niglets (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12696672)

Niglets, all of you.

well,to tell a family secret... (1)

gravyfaucet (759255) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696754)

my grandmother was Dutch

I can stop any time! (1)

Leroy_Brown242 (683141) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696675)

I have to admit, I check my email a ton. But all I have to do is glance over at the shell window with mutt running, and I'm off.

Also, in my world, email brings me great things. Sex, money, and geekery. Often, an email from the right person means free beer!

Hardware? (1)

Silverlancer (786390) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696678)

Anyone else wonder why this is in the Hardware section?

Re:Hardware? (1)

Leroy_Brown242 (683141) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696751)

It's in hardware but has the communication logo.

Dunno, where would you suggest it go? You check your email on hardware still, don't you? :)

Re:Hardware? (1)

master0ne (655374) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696796)

me... i was just checking to see if anyone else here notices that and possibly posted an explination.... wouldnt it fit more in with "Communications" or "IT" or even "It's funny. Laugh.", possibly "News" or "The Internet"and finally possibly "The Media". but certinly not "Hardware" ....

Until I noticed the editor, yeah (1)

ianscot (591483) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696866)

Yeah, I did wonder, and scanned down the post looking for what physical traits "e-mail" might have that would either encourage an addiction (clicks like an addicted mouse on a wheel?) or break as a result of an addiction (smoking servers?). Both a total reach, I know. And nothin', nada.

Take a look at the editor who put this up, though. Whatever the original poster chose on the way in, it's the editor who needs to figure out how things fit together. Taco, Taco, Taco.

Re:Hardware? (1)

Politburo (640618) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696878)

No, I didn't. Who gives a shit?

So now what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12696679)

E-mail companies everywhere: "All your free time are belong to us"

Email? Try Slashdot! (4, Funny)

uberdave (526529) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696682)

I may check my email 5 times a day, but I check Slashdot 20 or 30 times a day.

Five times a day? (1)

XanC (644172) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696686)

Lightweights!

I'm a geek damn it! (0)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696690)

WTF do they expect from us? Most of us spend several (see about 12) hours a day at a PC. If we have internet access we'd obviously use it to check our e-mail.

Maybe we should stop changing channels when we're bored just incase we become addicted to finding something better and entertaining.

It isn't addiction it is integration (1)

rjordan (640052) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696692)

We are just becoming more and more integrated with the computer half of ourselves. Sure the interface between fleshy bits and the computer hardware needs imrpovement. But I have been thinking about this and whether or not I am addicted lately. Ever get that feeling of irrational rage or anger or just plain frustration when someone else uses your laptop. It is because for some of us the laptop is an extension of our brain and we instinctively protect it. Just like I instinctively protect my email communication by denying I am addicted.

Re:It isn't addiction it is integration (1)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696794)


Ever get that feeling of irrational rage or anger or just plain frustration when someone else uses your laptop.
Heh...I've been there...my fiancee asks to use my laptop al the time so she can surf the web while we're watching TV.
My first, knee-jerk reaction is to say, "Hell no, you can't use my laptop! What the hell is the matter with you???".
Then I remember where I am, and say "Sure, honey."
Then I shut down the laptop and boot up Puppy for her (I don't care if she's my fiancee, she's NOT gonna log onto MY OS!).

Re:It isn't addiction it is integration (1)

rjordan (640052) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696852)

exactly - i have the same thing - my wife used to want to use my laptop all the time...

hell, I have a whole folder on personal thoughts and ideas and philosophy and crap that is really just an extension of my brain so I don't forget stuff - I don't want people reading it!!!

but it is more primal... can't quite place it, but glad i am not the only one...

She has her own laptop now - oh and she hates me using it :-)

Re:It isn't addiction it is integration (1)

rjordan (640052) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696815)

in fact any communication medium becomes an 'addiction' by the terms of the article, once we start using it - phone, IM, blogs...

this is because we are in fact addicted to communication with others and again it isn't really addiction so much as part of the way our brains function - we hate isolation

Work an addiction? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12696695)

I don't think most people would come to work every day if they didn't have to...

Yay for double negatives.

routine != addiction (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12696697)

"So heavily that one quarter of respondents won't go more than two or three days without it." By these standards I'm addicted to my classes and I only go to 50% of them...

Oh c'mon! (5, Insightful)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696698)

That's just plain stupid. Just because e-mail has become a social necessity (like checking your answering machine) doesn't mean you're ADDICTED.

E-mail is a form of communication, I use it to talk with my e-friends. We live in a global society now.

(On the other hand, if you check your e-mail because you're feeling lonely, then you're not addicted to e-mail. You just need real-life friends)

Re:Oh c'mon! (1)

Flinx_ca (809816) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696844)

I was going to make this point. Who does not check their voice-mail every time they get home?

"Are you addicted to email?" (1)

djinn2020 (874365) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696699)

No....

In fact I check it probably twice a month.

How many times again? (1)

swilde23 (874551) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696700)

On the average, respondents admitted to checking their email five times a day.

I suppose I make up for 4-500 people who don't check it at all then...

Definitely guilty here... (1)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696702)


I don't check my email obsessively...I have my Sidekick do it for me.

All my email is forwarded to my Sidekick, so I can know about email the instant it arrives.

Don't be like me.

^_^

Re:Definitely guilty here... (1)

markild (862998) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696804)

Just wait till you get some famous people's phone number then, and we'll be able to check it as well ;)

If only. (1)

FlyByPC (841016) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696707)

I'm taking an online course, and had to convince the professor to let us email in our assignments, as opposed to sending them in using snail mail.

A little more widespread addiction to email can't be all bad, I think.

Why do I like e-mail? (1)

east coast (590680) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696712)

Because it gets me away from talking face to face or over the phone to people I can't stand.

Does answering your telephone make you a phone addict?

Right. (5, Insightful)

Skye16 (685048) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696714)

I also check my voicemail every day when I get home from work, and at any other time that I think I may have a phone call.

I also check my physical mail box every day, just to see how much less money I'm going to have after I do bills.

I look in the fridge for something to eat at least 5-8 times a day.

I pee at least twice, often times around 3 times a day.

Until these people start going into withdrawal when they stop checking their email, don't call it addiction. I've gone weeks without checking my email, after having checked it about 8 times + a day for the year or two preceding that. I didn't even give it a second thought.

The real headline is that "The Opinion Research Corporation is staffed by a pack of retarded monkeys. The CEO expressed optimism that their next release will be more along the lines of Hamlet than a total pile of bullshit. High School students everywhere were known to ask 'What's the difference?'".

Re:Right. (1)

Cylix (55374) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696830)

Yeah,

I had that email period in life as well. There was a time when work was heavily email centric and many many functions were dependant on it.

My friends just happened to get used to email being real time for me.

Then fast foward to a career change. Suddenly, e-mail wasn't a huge deal with work, sure we still use it a great deal, but I get by with 3 or 4 hour check times.

It really wasn't that much of a transition.

Though there was the whole... work sponsored email addiction rehab program... but we don't talk about those dark times.

Re:Right. (1)

bcmm (768152) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696869)

I look in the fridge for something to eat at least 5-8 times a day.
You're obviously addicted. Try to give up food for a few weeks.

Snail mail (1)

omnisync (715232) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696718)

I guess I'm addicted to snail mail too. I keep checking my mailbox every morning and night... everyday... to find more bills! Omni

WTF? (1)

Tango42 (662363) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696720)

Since when has doing something a lot that needs doing a lot to be useful meant you're addicted? If you don't check your email frequently you might as well use snail mail - one of the biggest benefits of email over snail mail is speed.

addicted to work? (1)

joejor (578266) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696722)

not as much as I am addicted to food, clothing and shelter

Addicted? (4, Insightful)

interstellar_donkey (200782) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696724)

Yeah. To paraphase.

Slashdot user: "Hi, I'm Pat. And I'm an email addict".

Group: "Email? Email's not an addiction. I used to suck dick for coke. Now that's an addiction. You ever suck dick for email?"

Slashdot user: "Well" (blushes) "Now that I think about it... I suppose that yes... yes I have".

I was when email was new (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12696732)

I haven't checked my email more than once a day (and usually less) for years. Email "addiction" is for noobs.

Addicted? (3, Informative)

chjones (610558) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696733)

These results, as far as I can tell, have little if anything to do with "addiction". Do people check their email often? Yup. Do they do so to the detriment of other activities? Who knows?

How about this as an interesting survey:

  • Do you check your email when you know you're supposed to be doing other things? (Yeah, most people would answer this one positively.)
  • Have you ever tried to cut back on how often you check your email? (Why?)
  • Do you get annoyed when others suggest you check your email too much?
  • Do you ever feel guilty about checking your email?
  • Do you ever need an eye-opener, checking your email first thing in the morning? (Okay, this one's covered.)
  • And the all important: have you ever willingly had sex with someone so that they would allow you to check your email?

Unless the answers to several of those questions are "yes", I'd have a little trouble suggesting someone's addicted....

Cool (1)

FlyByPC (841016) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696734)

An "email this" link on an article about how addicted we are to email. Nice.

frequency yes, but email tracking and retracting? (1)

downsize (551098) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696737)

I completely agree with these findings in regards to frequency. But I sure hope these users know what they are asking for with those 'reverting sent emails and email tracking' features.

Checking your email at the start of your day is no different than checking your voice messages or notes left on your desk - this really is not all that surprising. And besides myself having over 32,000 emails stored [shinyfeet.com] and composing/replying what seems like every other minute, most of the other people I correspond with reply quickly, which would indicate that they check their email quite often. And I have worked at companies where email is their life, some people have emails dating back to 1997!

'retract unread messages' is funny - you send it, oops! I want it back! The could only happen on an enclosed system, unfortunately. But it is probably a good thing, wouldn't want people to be able to manipulate your inbox that way. I think a trailing header 'cookie' (dare I say UID 'ducks') could be achieved so you would know where your email ends up, how many times and to whom - but it would take a while for all email systems to integrate that feature.

What is amazing to me by this study, is that the features these users want are arguably gross invasions of privacy.

Hi my name is Adam (1)

derxob (835539) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696738)

and I'm addicted to checking my e-mail. The article suggests ways to avoid your email compulsion..
"Resolve not to check e-mail after a certain hour of the night, and respect the curfew." ... is this some kind of joke?
"Go without e-mail one day per week."
What is so bad about checking your e-mail? Are they going to start an Emailers Anonymous group? Where can I join?

What's F5 the problem? (0, Troll)

JohnGrahamCumming (684871) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696743)

I really don't F5 the issue here F5. I like to check my F5 email regularly F5 because it's the only F5 interaction I get with F5 people. So I check F5 it about once every F5 minutes, whatever.

Whats wrong with 5x a day? (1)

Sierpinski (266120) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696747)

How many people would be checking their email five times a day if we had something (in our house for example) that notified us (by, oh, say a ringing sound) when we had a new message? Or maybe a blinking light? Sound familiar?

People only check their email that often because they don't have any other way of knowing whether or not they've got new mail. Tie email notification in with a distinct telephone ring sound, and you'll see the # of times people check their email drop considerably. Crack down on spammers and then the number of emails an individual gets will drop, also reducing "false" notifications.

Or we could just use this time and money on research that's actually useful. As http://www.fark.com/ [fark.com] sometimes says 'Still no cure for cancer.'

Abuse of terms (1)

SandSpider (60727) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696750)

Addiction is a very specific term that has, like much else, been co-opted by people who want it to mean something else. From a psychological or physiological standpoint it means that, if you don't get the substance, you feel withdrawal symptoms, and you need increasing doses of the substance in order to keep the withdrawal symptoms away.

So, technically, most people are not addicted. They just really like email, and find it useful. However, from the way most people understand addiction, well, I suppose they're addicted. It just that there's nothing wrong with the new type of addiction. It's clinical addiction that causes problems.

Fair characterization? (1)

symbolic (11752) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696758)


Email has become such a ubiquitous means of communication, I'm not sure the its frequent use can be termed an "addiction". Would we say that someone is addicted to the phone because they either call or answer it 5 times a day? I'd posit that it's used a lot simply because it's an effective way to communicate.

I like Cheerios (2, Insightful)

vitaflo (20507) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696759)

Looks like I'm also addicted to brushing my teeth and eating breakfast, based on that criteria.

By those standards... (1)

Stankatz (846709) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696760)

"Of course, by those standards, most Americans must be addicted to work, sex, and TV as well."

So you're telling me that the average American has sex 5 times a day? Well, that makes me feel a lot better. :(

"Examples included the ability to retract unread messages"
Are you saying that men want the ability to "retract" unborn babies? Hmmm, you might be on to something there.

"a way to track the forwarding of their own email"
A way to find out who else your SO is sleeping with?

E-mail is a primary means of communication at work (1)

Richard Steiner (1585) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696761)

Since I have customers (and coworkers) all over the globe, sometimes working radically different hours than I do, I've found that it's often better to toss an e-mail to some people than to attempt to contact them by other means.

We also get a lot of announcements, problem reports, status messages, and other things sent via e-mail at my current workplace.

Because of this, by e-mail client checks for new mail every five minutes. And depending on the type of message, sometimes that's too long a period of time.

Not all e-mail usage is strictly by choice. :-) Sometimes it's self-defense.

What is "checking"? (1)

Have Blue (616) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696769)

If you use webmail, checking involves a good bit of effort and attention on your part. But if you use a normal client, you have it running in the background checking on your behalf periodically and notifying you when mail arrives. Does the fact that my computer checks mail several hundred times a day make me an addict, or does it mean that whoever designed this survey thinks that "everyone uses webmail these days"?

Is "addiction" the right word? (1)

AnonymousJackass (849899) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696776)

"Addiction" sounds a little strong to me. I check my email all the time -- I keep Gmail open at work all day long, with thunderbird open in the background collecting my work emails. I like being in touch. At weekends, I'll check my email a couple of times per day. Basically, if I have internet access, I check it. But am I addicted? Do I start to sweat and shake if I don't check it? No. Do I get abusive if I don't check it? No. Do I feel severe anxiety if I don't check it? No.

I'm not a psychologist, but I think professionals will tell you there's a big difference between being addicted and just liking to do something a lot!

Terrible terminology... (1)

Evro (18923) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696779)

http://www.google.com/search?q=define%3Aaddiction [google.com]

Checking your email isn't an addiction unless you have develop physical or mental dependence on it. I've heard people refer to themselves as being addicted to email, but as a joke. For anyone to claim that people who check their email regularly are "addicted" is silly. Unless your desire to read your email causes you to do (or not do) something that causes you or others harm, it's certainly not an addiction, anymore than reading the newspaper is.

i like my addiction then (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12696780)

of all the addictions one can have, I am perfectly happy being addicted to e-mail.

I'm curious (1)

OnTheWay (529387) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696793)

how many people are constantly checking their email as an escape from their tedious or stressful job environments.

Hypocrisy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12696803)

Sounds to me like the Opinion Research Company is addicted to studies.

5 x per day? Perfect! (1)

pete-classic (75983) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696823)

Rollie Hawk writes "41% of respondents start the day by checking their email. On the average, respondents admitted to checking their email five times a day. Just how addicted are the email-dependent among us? So heavily that one quarter of respondents won't go more than two or three days without it. Of course, by those standards, most Americans must be addicted to sex as well."

This raises the important questions: Does Rollie's girlfriend have a sister, and if so, may I have her phone number?

-Peter

Let's be real... (1)

brianerst (549609) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696829)

So heavily that one quarter of respondents won't go more than two or three days without it. Of course, by those standards, most Americans must be addicted to work, sex, and TV as well.
Or, maybe two out of three if you read Slashdot.

That study could be 100 years old (1)

Cowardly Anonym (30327) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696833)

U.S. residents are so hooked on the telephone that some use the telephone in the bathroom, in church and while driving, a new survey sponsored by America Online Inc. has found.

The average telephone user in the U.S. has two or three phones and spends about an hour every day using them, according to the survey, conducted by Opinion Research Corp.

Telephone dependency is so strong for 41% of survey respondents that they make telephone calls right after getting out of bed in the morning. The average user uses the telephone five times a day, according to the survey, which polled 4,012 respondents at least 18 years old in the 20 largest U.S. cities.

About a fourth of respondents acknowledged being so addicted to the telephone that they can't go more than two or three days without using the telephone. That includes vacations, during which 60% of respondents admitted using the telephone.

Unsurprisingly, all that telephone activity sometimes leads to regrets. Almost half of respondents -- 45% -- indicated they would like to have the ability to take back what they've said over the telephone.

There is also some attachment anxiety to phone calls. A significant portion of respondents -- 43% -- would like to be able to track where their gossip get forwarded.

The areas in which it's most likely to find telephone junkies are, in descending order: Miami/Fort Lauderdale, San Francisco, Philadelphia, New York and Houston.

For those interested in curbing their telephone compulsion, here are some suggestions:

Resolve not to use the telephone after a certain hour of the night, and respect the curfew.

Close the loop on an ongoing telephone discussion by picking up a pen and writing to the other person.

Consider how many phone calls you make.

Act on every phone message you receive by deleting it, forwarding it, responding to it or filing it.

Go without the telephone one day per week.

Work related (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12696840)

How many of these are work related? At work I check my email about 20 times a day. If I did not pay attention to it, I could lose my job for not keeping in touch.

My personal email is only checked once or twice a day.

Vacations and weekends are mine. No email unless I am working on a specific project.

I wish... (1)

Nameis (556253) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696842)

Just how addicted are the email-dependent among us? So heavily that one quarter of respondents won't go more than two or three days without it. Of course, by those standards, most Americans must be addicted to work, sex, and TV as well."

If I can get sex even just half as often as I check my email, I shall be a happy man.

Thank God for my Treo (1)

Supp0rtLinux (594509) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696846)

Thanks to my Treo, I get my corporate email delivered in near realtime via GoodLink and my personal email delivered every 15 minutes via ChatterEmail (3 IMAP, 2 POP).

The really scary thing are holiday weekends. The emails slow down and I find myself sending myself test emails just to make sure my mail server didn't go down. Talk about a dependency... my email addiction is worse than my crack addiction or my PSP addiction. :)

What a crock (1)

stlhawkeye (868951) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696849)

I also urinate first thing in the morning and get uncomfortable if I go too long without doing so. It's not an addiction.

I also eat breakfast, play with my dog, and read the newspaper every morning. Addiction is not the same as "routine".

Addicted Is Right... (1)

MacDaffy (28231) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696855)

I do computer consulting for a living and the one thing I've come to detest is email. The sound of the word even sets my teeth on edge. It's the first thing customers ask about when I get their computers back to them.

"Did you get all my eeeeemail???" "Is my eeeeemail still there?" "You aren't erasing my eeeeemail, are you?"

My partner and I are indebted to these people and their addiction, but it has become the bane of our existence. Luckily, we're mostly a Mac OS X shop and it's easy to back up and restore their stuff if they use Apple Mail. I've also just learned how to convert Windows mailboxes to Apple format, so it'll be easier to avoid that whine: "Can you transfer my eeeeemail?!"

Feh!

Typical /. response is... (4, Funny)

prisoner-of-enigma (535770) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696856)

Of course, by those standards, most Americans must be addicted to work, sex, and TV as well.

What is this "sex" thing you speak of? I can find no reference to it in any of my emails.

Re:Typical /. response is... (1)

teelasdad (796062) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696891)

i can send you some of mine - i have tons of them with "penis enlargement", "nude girls ...", "free sex ..."

For some its not an addiction (1)

lilrowdy18 (870767) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696868)

At the company I work for we use email as a way to handle support requests. We use Groupwise as our email system and have a folder full of emails to keep track of support requests. I must check that box 20-25 times a day or more to see how current SR are doing and which ones need my attention.

On a side note our Groupwise server alos has the ability to retract unread emails. It has saved me from having a partner/manager read some un-tactful emails. I guess you could say go Novell??? :)~

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

I had a nightmare and in it there was all these 1's and 0's floating around. I even think I seen a 2.

Life (1)

mattmentecky (799199) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696871)

Of course, by those standards, most Americans must be addicted to work, sex, and TV as well."

To nitpick for a second, arent the first two well...essential to life? Wouldn't necessarily call that an addiction....

And whats with the 'Americans' snark? Last time I checked the rest of the world works and has sex too, hell Americans rank lower in industrialized nationals among sexual activity!

Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12696873)

Their study of 4,012 adults in the twenty largest U.S. cities found that 41% of respondents start the day by checking their email.

How many people start the day by reading their post? Does this mean that they are all addicted to snail mail?

If that's the criteria people are using for addiction these days, well then I'm addicted to using public transport, I'm addicted to cups of tea and I'm addicted to listening to the radio.

Forget e-mail addiction (1)

1967mustangman (883255) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696882)

Forget all the e-mail addiction. What about all those out there addicted to /.

Wow -- this is really interesting article... (1)

IronChefMorimoto (691038) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696886)

...and I have a few thoughts on it... ...wait...gotta check my e-mail. Be right back.

IronChefMorimoto

Where is the study about /.? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12696887)

There is the stufy about the addictive nature of /. and how many times a day someone checks it or how long they can last without it?

Email to SMS.... (1)

Piranhaa (672441) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696895)

I remember when I would check my email many times per day. I now have all my emails forwarded to my hotmail account and have them SMS'd to my cell phone. This saves lots of time on my part, and I get INSTANT notifications on when my emails come in! It's great

Vehicular Addiction (1)

Blitzenn (554788) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696900)

This is bad. What is becoming of the American citizenry? It is already sad to see the Vehicular addicts each morning, and now this? Yes, Vehicular Addicts. Those people who must satiate their addiction to vehicles by driving one each day. The worst of them actually 'shoot up' by driving first thing each morning, sometimes even before coffee (double addiction jeapordy there my friends!)! It is sad to see people being enslaved by their cars, and now even by email. What a sad sad people we have become. We need to appoint a presidential commission to combat these addictions before lest consume our society!

I think in twenty years people will look back on those that tried to flag the acceptance and inclusion of technologies into our lives as 'addictions', will scoff and use the surnames of those who did the calling as jokes in themselves.

"Rollie Hawk writes "Are you addicted to email?

Are you a 'Rollie' Head too? Shall we check you into the clinic now? Ha Ha Ha!

Obligatory "In Korea only old people...email" post (1)

trailerparkcassanova (469342) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696902)

In Korea, only old people check their email five times a day.

Does this count work emails? (1)

tscheez (71929) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696904)

Because I will check personal email accounts around 3-5 times a day. But my work email account gets checked much more than that.

I am not any more "addicted" to checking my work email than my personal email accounts, I just have to check it or else my work never gets done.

horsefeathers (2, Funny)

joeslugg (8092) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696910)

Saying people are "addicted" to email because they check it 3-5 times a day is like saying people are "addicted" to the phone because they choose to answer it every time it rings. Or for that matter, checking your snail-mail box once a day (you ADDICT!). Oh, I check my wristwatch a few times a day to see what time it is - does this make me a TIME addict?

this is stupid (1)

jchawk (127686) | more than 9 years ago | (#12696920)

I work for an ISP my whole day is spent reading email. That's how I interact with tech support / sales / the rest of the company.

They know better then to call the engineers, we hate that. :-P
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