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E-mail Is For Old People

Zonk posted about 9 years ago | from the back-in-my-day-we-had-pine-and-we-liked-it dept.

The Internet 562

Strolls writes "Although the article itself doesn't seem quite as exciting or newsworthy, this headline from Reuters amused me mightily. Reuters' summary is here and here's the original survey by Pew Internet and American Life Project." From the article: "Internet users from 12 to 17 years old say e-mail is best for talking to parents or institutions, but they are more likely to fire up IM when talking with each other, the nonprofit Pew Internet and American Life Project found. E-mail is still used by 90 percent of online teens. But the survey found greater enthusiasm for instant messaging."

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Different technologies, different purpose (4, Insightful)

It doesn't come easy (695416) | about 9 years ago | (#13187145)

IM is for conversation, email is for documentation.

IM is for communication in real-time, email is for communication any time.

IM is for communication with someone online, email is for communication with someone online or offline.

IM is for temporary messaging, email is for permanent messaging.

IM is for instant messaging, email is for persistent messaging.

As a group, teens have more time to sit and chat than adults, hence the preference for IMing friends. IM is just the electronic equivalent of hanging out at the mall.

Re:Different technologies, different purpose (1)

blueadept1 (844312) | about 9 years ago | (#13187193)

Way to write every possible comment in one post. x(

The last one I feel is the major point. Adults responsibilities, while teens can just sit there and do their 'homework' for 8 hours after school if they want to.

Re:Different technologies, different purpose (5, Insightful)

sidb (530400) | about 9 years ago | (#13187223)

M is just the electronic equivalent of hanging out at the mall

IM is the electronic equivalent of telephones, which are a notorious teen passtime.

Re:Different technologies, different purpose (0, Flamebait)

glassjaw rocks (793596) | about 9 years ago | (#13187374)

Please tell me how telephones are not electronic, I'm very interested to hear your answer.

Re:Different technologies, different purpose (3, Funny)

nuggetman (242645) | about 9 years ago | (#13187397)

Tel... tele... teleph.... no, sorry, doesn't ring a bell.

OH! WAIT! That's what we used to get online to use IMs before cable, that's it.

Re:Different technologies, different purpose (3, Funny)

Chanc_Gorkon (94133) | about 9 years ago | (#13187312)

Agreed. Just look at how popular IRC was when we were in our late teens and early 20s.

Re:Different technologies, different purpose (1)

peragrin (659227) | about 9 years ago | (#13187382)

>>IM is for communication with someone online, email is for communication with someone online or offline. >IM is for temporary messaging, email is for permanent messaging. > IM is for conversation, email is for documentation.
is about the only true statement.

The great thing about IM is that you can use it Immediately or to pass and hold messages like email.

Email isn't always reliable either. I have seen messages lost. But it is a better way to send a file to an offline person.

Now if someone could create an IM system that would default messages to an email when offline, that would be cool. Take the great features of both and make it a standard protocal. Heck we could even have security standard to help block some spammers

Re:Different technologies, different purpose (1)

Pxtl (151020) | about 9 years ago | (#13187473)

Not on MSN. MSN pass-and-hold depends on them being online. The lack of offline MSN messenging is the biggest annoyance when dealing with messenger users. I just use Miranda and don't care what client they're using, but always get annoyed when I find out I can't send a message because of the MSN network's missing feature. Email is not a substitute, as people have a lot less trouble ignoring a queued IM then just another email in their listing. I know I ignore my emails much more often than IMs.

Re:Different technologies, different purpose (1)

cayenne8 (626475) | about 9 years ago | (#13187414)

In many cases...I agree with you. But, mostly only for home use.

Most places I've worked for, actively block IM ports...and often have specific policies in place forbidding IM. On the other hand...email is permitted. Actually, I used email pretty much as a real-time communication tool. Then again, my friends and I are all pretty accomplished typists...speed wise that is.

What actually puzzles me...is using cell phones to text message, rather than talk on it...pressing buttons multiple times for each letter to me is pretty slow...

I played with IM a lot when it first came out (ICQ and the like)...but, no one I know (and yes I am getting older) really was ever on at the same time or using the same service..got kinda bored with it. But, I keep email on 24/7 at work, and on my computers at home.

Re:Different technologies, different purpose (1)

Pxtl (151020) | about 9 years ago | (#13187520)

Dunno about you, but where I come from calling on a cell-phone costs money, and TMs are dirt cheap. Hence the popularity of text messages. Especially for long-distance.

IM = Instant Gratification (5, Insightful)

reporter (666905) | about 9 years ago | (#13187417)

The young adults of today are part of "Generation Y", which was discussed in a report titled "The Echo Boomers [cbsnews.com] " and broadcast by "60 Minutes" in 2004 December. The report states, " Levine calls the phenomenon visual motor ecstasy, where any cultural accoutrement that doesn't produce instant satisfaction is boring. As echo boomers grow up, they'll have to learn that life is not just a series of headlines and highlight reels ".

The main reason that instant messaging (IM) is popular among young adults is that it provides the kind of instant gratification that e-mail cannot provide. IM gives you instant interaction with the other party: friend, girl friend, etc. E-mail responses are usually not instantaneous and depend on whether the recipient of the e-mail note has logged onto her computer and actually read the note.

Re:IM = Instant Gratification (1)

ArsonSmith (13997) | about 9 years ago | (#13187507)

Luckly IM has gotten around all that. You don't have to be online or actually read an IM to respond.

Re:Different technologies, different purpose (1)

Nos. (179609) | about 9 years ago | (#13187434)

Nice. Its like saying people would rather hold a converstation over the phone than through voice mail. Yup, I bet most people would, but they serve very different purposes.

Re:Different technologies, different purpose (5, Funny)

ArsonSmith (13997) | about 9 years ago | (#13187449)

I knew it. Kids these days just wont take the time to type up an email. IM is just not as personal as actually having a letter in your InBox. It's just not the same. IM is going to be the downfall of sociaty.

Re:IM is a distraction EMAIL is .... (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187477)

IM is a huge pain in the butt.
IM is a distraction.
IM is a total waste of my time.

I used IM for a very brief period and got sick of everyone expecting an answer __right__ __now__. So I no longer use it. Ever.

Didn't /. just have an article about three minute distraction intervals and the loss of creativity?

Bingo!

You want an answer from me, send email.
When I get around to it, I'll read it. And then after that, when I get around to it, I'll answer it.

EMAIL works. IM interrupts work.

Re:Different technologies, different purpose (1)

hackstraw (262471) | about 9 years ago | (#13187522)

IM is for instant messaging, email is for persistent messaging.

As a group, teens have more time to sit and chat than adults, hence the preference for IMing friends. IM is just the electronic equivalent of hanging out at the mall.


Also, as the attention span decreases and need for instant gratification increases, things like waiting for an email is unacceptable. Much like snail mail has become unacceptable as a form of communication between people (except for people in prison, they have all the time in the world, and no other means of communication with the outside world).

At least for work stuff, email is my preferred method of communication, and has been for many years. I can access my email anywhere at any time. Sometimes (believe it or not), I do not want to drop or cannot drop what I am doing at this time to answer the phone. Email lets me have a written record of what was said, when it was said, and I can easily go back and look something up if I forget a detail.

All in all I agree with the parent about IM being the electronic equivalent of hanging out at the mall. I guess I'm "old" now, I've never gotten into IM. But then again, I simply do not need the chronic attention from other people to feel good. Its amazing the value of idle nothingness with the companionship of another person. Don't get me wrong, I still enjoy "hanging out at the mall" type of relationships and entertainment, but I still think its weird.

IM is for privacy violation... (1, Troll)

rmdyer (267137) | about 9 years ago | (#13187536)

With IM, you give up your desires, needs, wants, ambitions, politics, loves, hates, hobbies, friends, and families to the corporate machine. All text is there to be consumed by a data mining engine created for the sole purpose of knowing about you. Beware of using IM at a company. Beware of using IM if you work for the government, or state. Beware of using IM at home. Unless you are running your own messaging service, you won't be free from scrutiny. Of course the same is true for free email services too. Use anything free at your own risk. It is astounding how young people don't give a second thought about personal privacy issues. Just offer something for free, and it is taken like candy.

Off soapbox.

first (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187150)

first

May I be the First: (-1, Offtopic)

MrCopilot (871878) | about 9 years ago | (#13187153)

In Korea only old people use Email.

Thank You

Re:May I be the First: (1)

korea (615587) | about 9 years ago | (#13187368)

It is true. The youth such as myself have taken to communicating by forming words in Hangul with zergs while in game so we don't have to alt-tab to get to MSN. ^___^

In all seriousness, ... smoke signals. They're the future.

IM and Email complement one another (5, Insightful)

bigwavejas (678602) | about 9 years ago | (#13187154)

Of course kids are going to love instant gratification through real-time instant messaging as opposed to email. Until they grow up and find themselves in business situations where they're going to need to coordinate meetings, share presentations/comments and work with peers/partners who live in different time zones there simply isn't a need for them to use email. Can you imagine logging in and finding your desktop covered with IM pop-ups from customers and colleagues? It's just not practical in the business arena to use IM as the only means of communication.

Re:IM and Email complement one another (1)

lucabrasi999 (585141) | about 9 years ago | (#13187222)

Can you imagine logging in and finding your desktop covered with IM pop-ups from customers and colleagues?

Obviously, you haven't been in MY office anytime recently?

Re:IM and Email complement one another (2, Interesting)

ninjagin (631183) | about 9 years ago | (#13187392)

"It's just not practical in the business arena to use IM as the only means of communication."

Aye. You are correct, sir.

At the last company I worked for (a startup), I set up a jabber server on the local network, one that would be accessible over the VPN, too. It was extremely handy for those times where someone was offsite, perhaps visiting a customer, working from home or travelling somewhere and you just needed to ask a quick question or get a quick status. We used jabber server and GAIM clients so the cost was free (apart from setup time and a little account and log maintenance from time to time).

When it was first turned up, there was some neat-o factor involved, but eventually it became part of the communications mix. While I can't point to any really obvious places where "IM saved us money or a customer account", having it as a part of the mix certainly improved efficiency.

I'd be interested in knowing what other slashdotters have experienced when they've added IM to their communications mix, or had it available from the get-go.

Re:IM and Email complement one another (3, Insightful)

tcampb01 (101714) | about 9 years ago | (#13187534)

Let's rephrase the survey... apprently Pew Research wasn't clever enough to notice that the difference isn't your age so much as it is your level of responsibilities.

People with jobs, spouses, kids, and other responsibilities don't have the idle time to keep up with constant interruptions for meaningless chit-chat. When we do chit-chat, IM is far far too slow and time consuming - we actually communicate using strangely effective organs evolved from prehistoric times called "vocal cords".

To borrow another cheesy line (2, Funny)

mboos (700155) | about 9 years ago | (#13187166)

In America, only old people use e-mail.

Re:To borrow another cheesy line (2, Funny)

ohyedoggies (859303) | about 9 years ago | (#13187252)

In soviet Russia, email uses you!

Oh god, (4, Funny)

Daverd (641119) | about 9 years ago | (#13187168)

Here come the Korea jokes.

Re:Oh god, (1)

TuringTest (533084) | about 9 years ago | (#13187407)

This headline from Reuters amused me mightily

The reason was that he missed Reuters saying in which country this happens!

Re:Oh god, (1)

korea (615587) | about 9 years ago | (#13187432)

The exclamation point means it is funny!!

Re:Oh god, (1)

korea (615587) | about 9 years ago | (#13187474)

so, two koreans walk into a pc bang...

Re:Oh god, (1)

tehshen (794722) | about 9 years ago | (#13187511)

I saw the title, and even before reading the comments I knew there was going to be one like this...

Re:Oh god, (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187535)

Here come the Korea jokes.

Actually, I'm looking for the vi vs. emacs postings....

In Korea... (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187175)

What. Zero posts, and no Korean jokes already?

Ask the kids again... (5, Insightful)

Valiss (463641) | about 9 years ago | (#13187179)

...AFTER they get a job. If I get less than 50 e-mails a day at work, it's a Christmas day miracle.

Is this only in Korea... (2, Funny)

GillBates0 (664202) | about 9 years ago | (#13187182)

...or all over?

e-mail is for old people... (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187185)


..only in Korea ;)

Guess I'm old then. (2, Interesting)

Kenja (541830) | about 9 years ago | (#13187186)

I for one hate IM due to the abbreviated "1337" speak used in it. I also hate having to search back through the Trillian logs looking for somthing someone said weeks ago.

Re:Guess I'm old then. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187255)

wow, you must be REALLY old

Re:Guess I'm old then. (2, Informative)

MyDixieWrecked (548719) | about 9 years ago | (#13187352)

does trillian not have a log search functionality?

Adium [adiumx.com] does. Although Adium is only for OSX. ;)

Also, useful is being able to grep the IM logs and also search with spotlight.

Re:Guess I'm old then. (1)

mrchaotica (681592) | about 9 years ago | (#13187406)

Just because you're using IM doesn't mean you have to use stupid abbreviations, nor does it mean you have to converse with idiots who do. Hate the idiots, not the technology.

Riiiiight... (5, Funny)

ShaniaTwain (197446) | about 9 years ago | (#13187202)

Did you hear that 18 year olds? You're old people now. Grab a prune-juice and check your email.

Makes sense now (1)

coflow (519578) | about 9 years ago | (#13187209)

But what about when they're old enough that not everybody is constantly online or near an IM client...... oh, wait, never mind.

"E-mail Is For Old People" (5, Funny)

cablepokerface (718716) | about 9 years ago | (#13187215)

E-mail Is For Old People

So those VIAGRA spammers knew about this long before this research.

News bulletin o' the day (5, Funny)

192939495969798999 (58312) | about 9 years ago | (#13187218)

Thanks, here's another bomb: talking enthusiastically preferred to writing letters for conversation among peers located within 10 feet of each other.

Re:News bulletin o' the day (2, Funny)

eln (21727) | about 9 years ago | (#13187372)

Teenagers are obssessed with IMing each other. I've seen two teenagers sitting right next to each other sending each other IMs. I just file it under "teenagers do dumb things."

Re:News bulletin o' the day (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187486)

we need a new mod option: "Funny but sad"

comparison doesn't hold (3, Insightful)

circletimessquare (444983) | about 9 years ago | (#13187229)

im is synchronous

email is asynchronous

so they both have their pluses and minuses as a communicaiton medium, depending upon what you are doing

i think the kids are just restating the fatigue we are all feeling from the effects of email spam

Re:comparison doesn't hold (1)

Vengie (533896) | about 9 years ago | (#13187361)

Email is asynchronous? Someone has never worked in a modern office in a midsized-to-large enterprise. Trust me....in a corporate office, the exchange server will dutifully plug away as you and 5 other co-workers hit reply all every 3 seconds. [*sigh* -- i miss pine....]

... oy veh ... (1)

ninjagin (631183) | about 9 years ago | (#13187232)

The moment I saw this story pop up in my google news summary, I -=knew=- that a posting on slashdot was in the making.

Finally, I'm an old person ... and I didn't even have to wait until I was 40.

-=sigh=-

Re:... oy veh ... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187408)

oy veh?

is that korean?

In other news (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187235)

A recent survey shows that teens prefer talking on the telephone over mailing each other prerecorded tapes of themselves talking.

Remember (1)

e_armadillo (14304) | about 9 years ago | (#13187240)

Everyone 18 and over are "old" to the 12 - 17 crowd.

ohh noes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187242)

I luv instnt msg LOLOL i gt nu nokia fone!!111 cum 2 my plce

because us "old people" have more to do ... (3, Insightful)

SABME (524360) | about 9 years ago | (#13187253)

I suspect this is largely true, mostly because we "older" folks have more responsibilities that preclude us from hanging out and IMing each other.

I use IM at work to talk with other folks about the crisis du-jour. With a million things clamoring for my attention all day, it's nice to have an asynchronous medium like email for things that don't need a response *right this instant*.

3rd form of communication (1)

MirrororriM (801308) | about 9 years ago | (#13187263)

Hey, don't just assume us "old" people only use email and IM. I happen to use IRC which is about as "old" as me. ;)

Re:3rd form of communication (1)

MirrororriM (801308) | about 9 years ago | (#13187295)

...oops...ok, I guess I'm a *little* older than 18 or so, but still. :P

Now, let's talk BBS's - woohoo!

why I don't use IM (1)

SenatorOrrinHatch (741838) | about 9 years ago | (#13187264)

I don't use IM for the same reason I keep my cellphone turned off unless I want to make a call. I don't want my train of thought or my present activities interrupted by whatever random person feels like contacting me just whenever.

How to find topics for /. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187267)

Read Blue's News [bluesnews.com] , start submitting Links of the Day.
Read I Cringely, post a topic as soon as his latest article is up.

There are others, but I don't read them...

I don't care if it's IM or email (1)

EnronHaliburton2004 (815366) | about 9 years ago | (#13187270)

IM: Turn off logging and it's great for unrecorded, quick or asynnc. private conversations with coworkers. (I know it's unsecure-- not too concerned about that, being the admin & all).

If anyone starts using l33t speak during IM conversations, I'll run over to their desk and beat them with a wet noodle.

Re:I don't care if it's IM or email (2, Informative)

wiggles (30088) | about 9 years ago | (#13187492)

(I know it's unsecure-- not too concerned about that, being the admin & all)

Jabber (in some forms) supports SSL and TLS encryption -- we're using a Jabber server in my department to facilitate communications, and I made damn sure it was encrypted, otherwise the admins with the sniffers would be shutting that server down if they saw what we were saying about them....

OMG,itz s0 gnu! (5, Funny)

edraven (45764) | about 9 years ago | (#13187275)

Raise your hand if you remember when the command for Instant Messaging was 'write'.

Re:OMG,itz s0 gnu! (3, Informative)

geniusj (140174) | about 9 years ago | (#13187305)

*raises his hand* .. talk and ytalk were very useful too ..

Re:OMG,itz s0 gnu! (2, Interesting)

wscott (20864) | about 9 years ago | (#13187402)

I still think 'talk' was a much more interactive experience. When you can watch the other person type, you can interact much quicker.

Do any of the current IM clients send each keystroke?

Re:OMG,itz s0 gnu! (2, Informative)

edraven (45764) | about 9 years ago | (#13187442)

Some tell you that the other user is typing, I think that's about it.

Re:OMG,itz s0 gnu! (1)

Mainframes ROCK! (644130) | about 9 years ago | (#13187495)

How 'about SMSG RSCS?

smsg rscs msg sysb bsmith lunch at what time bill?

Re:OMG,itz s0 gnu! (1)

greed (112493) | about 9 years ago | (#13187519)

Kids.

#CP SMSG SOMEFRIEND AT SOMENODE Wanna catch a movie?

All this UNIX stuff is so... modern. No virtual card punch, spooler or printer.

And VM/CMS commands trigger the /. lameness filter.

IM vs. e-mail in the office (4, Interesting)

amichalo (132545) | about 9 years ago | (#13187282)

In the office we use both IM and e-mail.

IM is used when we have a quick question, need to check and see if someone is in before we transfer a call, want to know who wants to get some Chineese for lunch, etc.

We e-mail our clients. We e-mail project status reports, team task lists, meeting agendas.

IM replaces what we would say on a phone. e-mail replaces what we would print on a printer.

Re:IM vs. e-mail in the office (1)

amichalo (132545) | about 9 years ago | (#13187334)

IM replaces what we would say on a phone. e-mail replaces what we would print on a printer.

And just to clarify, teens, as the article discusses, would do the same things. They wouldn't IM a professor their homework. They wouldn't e-mail a girlfriend to see if she wanted to hangout later.

Teens don't use e-mail as much because what they have to say is of far less consequence than those in corporate environments who's jobs are to 'document' things.

When they get jobs, they will e-mail more too.

IM VS Email (2, Interesting)

shockingbluerose (810180) | about 9 years ago | (#13187287)

My parents have no clue how to Use IM, but they did get into email somewhat, so I see the point there. And teenagers who don't have a job, and who have friends that don't have jobs, have no need for email as all their friends are always going to be online, or at the very least have an away message up. However, in the business world no matter what age you are you're going to use email. And in the gaming world no matter what age you are you're going to use IM's. In short, while age is a factor, I think occupation of time is the biggest factor.

I must be REALLY old (2, Interesting)

durbnpoisn (813086) | about 9 years ago | (#13187290)

I only use IM when I have to. Like, if I need to actually have a conversation right away. Otherwise, I prefer email. So, I must be older than dirt.

In related news, I will never understand these people that insist on using IM over their phone! Fucking, just call the person! Ass.

Re:I must be REALLY old (1)

metternich (888601) | about 9 years ago | (#13187476)

In that case, I must be ancient. I like going over to people's houses and talking with them in person.

Nice Numbers.... (3, Insightful)

Yad (713195) | about 9 years ago | (#13187291)

90% still use email, but have "greater enthusiasm" for IM? Somehow I don't get the conclusion that email is for old people from that.

Re:Nice Numbers.... (1)

CableModemSniper (556285) | about 9 years ago | (#13187376)

Without that headline, no one could make any Korea jokes.

IM is for people I know IRL (1)

iGN97 (83927) | about 9 years ago | (#13187293)

I use IM for people I know IRL. I cannot remember the last time I emailed someone I hang out with, seldomly or regularly. If they're not online, I use SMS. Email is either used to get to know new people or for business.

It's true.. (2, Interesting)

InsideTheAsylum (836659) | about 9 years ago | (#13187298)

I'm 18 and I get about 2 emails a week but spend hours talking to people over AIM,IRC,MSN,MUCKs, etc. That's both good and bad, if someone's trying to keep a conversation going over email, I can take my time in replying and IMs have their downfall in that you pretty much have to reply instantenously. Feh.

Arrrrgh (1)

Boronx (228853) | about 9 years ago | (#13187506)

I hate being a Nazi, but I've read this so many times and it's finally got to me: a downside is a flaw, a downfall is something, perhaps a flaw, perhaps not, that is your undoing.

What you are talking about is a downside, not a downfall unless you think it means the end of IM.

Old people should be happy!! (2, Interesting)

RUFFyamahaRYDER (887557) | about 9 years ago | (#13187309)

The adults and older people should be happy that teens are using IM's. Because..:
They aren't calling long distance on the phone or using too many cell phones minutes to talk to their friends.
AND In many cases they aren't tying up a phone line (if they have broadband).
I say this because it's the adults who will most likely be paying the phone bills and/or not being able to use the phone if their teenager is on it all day.

Re:Old people should be happy!! (1)

cayenne8 (626475) | about 9 years ago | (#13187530)

"They aren't calling long distance on the phone or using too many cell phones minutes to talk to their friends."

Hmm...most every cell phone plan I know has free long distance. Those text messages aren't free to send...

I think this might have been more of a correct statement a few years ago..but, now, most all plans have free LD...and the amounts of time they give you monthly might as well be unlimited too...

so the old people killed that spammer... (1)

aqsv49 (894530) | about 9 years ago | (#13187317)

About that spammer that had his head bashed in in russia, u trying to say it was old people that did it? i mean its a valid reason as they were prolly pissed cos the viagra from the ads they bought didnt work :(

Different Needs, Different Medium (1)

weilawei (897823) | about 9 years ago | (#13187332)

I use IM for friends whom I want to chat with, IRC for flamewars (This is IRC, every channel is #mydistroisbetterthanyours,) and email for business discussions or leaving a note to someone who's offline. Effective use of all the available technologies increases productivity. There's times to plan and chat and there's times to shut them off and code.

Ahem. (-1, Troll)

anza (900224) | about 9 years ago | (#13187333)

In Soviet Russia, e-mail uses YOU.

Yakov Smirnoff sucks (-1, Troll)

Ostien (893052) | about 9 years ago | (#13187339)

In Soviet Russia old people IM you!

FAILZOrS? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187341)

core team. They exactly what you've It's best to try Shit-fiiled,

Instant messaging sucks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187347)

I write messaging software for a living, and even I loathe instant messaging, *especially* for group communication. Things fly by, there is no coherence, you can't really refer back to things, it generally just feels childish and unprofessional. It's hard to tell when anything has been completed or when a resting state has been maintained. Half the time you have no idea if the person on the other end is paying attention and conversations end very abruptly. It sucks.

Re:Instant messaging sucks (5, Funny)

Anita Coney (648748) | about 9 years ago | (#13187415)

"it generally just feels childish and unprofessional"

I think you nailed why young people like it.

I've been there (3, Funny)

fermion (181285) | about 9 years ago | (#13187350)

I think this is what doomed one of my prior relationships. I was and relatively old Emailer. She was a relatively young IMer. Incompatibility ensued.

(interesting side note is that emailer is old enough to be in the dictionary, but IMer is not. One is truly old when one's verbifications are standard.)

One app to rule them all (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187357)

More and more I wish there was one app that did it all. I am increasingly finding it difficult to research the history of conversations I have with colleagues and friends. Sometimes they start in IM and end in email or vise versa. Then combine that with the several IM services available and friends who subscribe to more than one. I also get frustrated when a conversation goes back and forth from ICQ and AIM or MSN from the same person, though at least this doesn't happen often. If one app could unify all mainstream communications both IM and email, and create an intuitive interface for organization and search abilities I think it would be a hit.

And in other news... (5, Funny)

Rob_Bryerton (606093) | about 9 years ago | (#13187379)

Apples are better than oranges.

Story at 11.

Summary (2, Insightful)

Fear the Clam (230933) | about 9 years ago | (#13187394)

IM is synchronous; e-mail is asynchronous. See the literature [december.com] for corresponding behavior.

They will change (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 years ago | (#13187400)

Internet users from 12 to 17 years old say e-mail is best for talking to parents or institutions, but they are more likely to fire up IM when talking with each other

That will change when they get old enough to pay their own way in life. When they are working a job to pay their way through school plus raising a kid, no one wants someone constantly interrupting them to ask 'wot u up 2?'

Sure, because teenagers are shortsighted twits (3, Interesting)

ScentCone (795499) | about 9 years ago | (#13187422)

Don't get me wrong, I was a shortsighted twit when I was a teenager, too. What an ass! But all this does is document that teenagers:

1) Think the whole world revolves around them,
2) that is does, or should do so right now,
3) that anyone who isn't talking to them right now is a loser,
4) and that MTV has further reduced their attention span to that of a gnat.

In other news: teenagers think belts, savings accounts, and employers are also for Old People.

"Timmy, write your grandmother a thank you note for paying your tuition this semester."

"I can't - she's not online. What an old loser!"

IM vs Email (2, Insightful)

Drako2 (99503) | about 9 years ago | (#13187425)

I worked on a development team where half of our programmers were in Russia and the other half were in-house and our only form of conversation was IM.

I think what people 12-17 don't understand, and not through any fault of their own but mostly just because of the fact they haven't been exposed to corporate America is that there's a thing called Accountability. People in the business world now feel that e-mail is a sufficient medium for discussing important business matters, setting deadlines, etc. While this may change in the coming years, and definetly will, that is the concensus now. So, for someone 12-17 who doesn't have to deal with corporate America at this point e-mail probably does feel a bit old school.

Ha :) (4, Funny)

roman_mir (125474) | about 9 years ago | (#13187426)

I just imagined /. in real time (an open chat room):

-FriSt Pst, b147ch35!

(with heavy Russian accent): -Hot grits. Get your hot grits here.

-Oh, yes, Nataly Portman always reminds me of a good big bowl of nice steaming hot gritz.

-GOOGLE ROKZ. THIER ARE THE CLOOOEST! I AM A ROKCET SCENTEIST >LWE>F PFQ!FP !

-In soviet Russia, Rocket Scientists Google YOU.

-Oh, man, I remember this one time, in the band camp....

-Yes, Microsoft is the evil empire. They are releasing this new service, a total Google rip off too...

-Microsoft is just trying to play nice, and here on /. it's always like: argh, we are the pirates, MS is the biatch! Leenux all the way!

-It's Mr. GNU/Linux to you, a55h47.

-Give man a fish and he ows you a fish. Hit him on the head with a fish and he just swims there in the fishery. For the dead fish.

-4ll y0ur b453 4r3...

-You, dumb ass, this 'all your base' crap is like 10 years old. Get with the program!

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

Yup. I can see why teenagers like the IM more than email. You have to think before sending an email (well, at least a little more) because you don't have the easy way to instantly correct what you just said.

Postal Mail is for old people (2, Funny)

killermookie (708026) | about 9 years ago | (#13187437)

Communication users from 12 to 17 years old say postal mail is best for talking to parents or institutions, but they are more likely to dial up a phone when talking with each other, the nonprofit Pew Internet and American Life Project found. Postal mail is still used by 90 percent of teens. But the survey found greater enthusiasm for phone calling.

Huh? What's the point? (4, Insightful)

Octagon Most (522688) | about 9 years ago | (#13187469)

"E-mail is still used by 90 percent of online teens. But the survey found greater enthusiasm for instant messaging."

"Three-quarters of teen Internet users use instant messaging, compared with 42 percent of adults."

OK, 90% of teens use email and 75% of teens use IM. Yet teens have a "greater enthusiasm for instant messaging"? Sure, a greater enthusiasm than adults (75% to 42% according to this survey). Is that a surprise to anyone? But they are still more likely to be users of email. So what's the point of this?

Things change when you get a real job (1)

Reeee (902901) | about 9 years ago | (#13187491)

I thought the same thing before I got a real job, as did most people that are now in their mid-20's and working an office gig. It's really not a remarkable insight.

sounds about right (1)

nuggetman (242645) | about 9 years ago | (#13187512)

i talk to all my friends on IM. i rarely ever use the phone, unless I'm out which is when I'll use my cell for a quick "hey where are you when are you getting here" if we're coordinating a get-together someplace. i hate talking on the phone.

i use email to talk to professors, club leaders, parents and relatives while at school, etc...

Call me the dinosaur (2, Insightful)

modi123 (750470) | about 9 years ago | (#13187532)

This is probably going to equate me with the Stone Age, but I find both email and IM rather impersonal. I would rather get up, and walk the 10 feet to talk to the person directly. I find breaking the isolation gets better results. *shrug* Why cut out 70% of my communication abilities (read: body language). If something goes south on a project I can reinforce behavior with my 6'7 frame. *grin*
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