Monday, June 08, 2009

In This Months Business Monthly

Sometimes, when I write my column, I’ll begin with one thought and wind up someplace completely different. The trick for me is to try and make a connection between both thoughts, even if that connection seems a bit tenuous.

I’m not so sure I achieved that this month.

The basic idea I started with was the abuse of the ‘reply to all’ function in emails. I found plenty of good material including this article by Matthew Lee on the Huffington Post blog about a “reply to all” frenzy that almost shut down the computers at the State Department and this story by Dylan Stableford in Folio about a company that became so frustrated with ‘reply to all’ abuse that they eliminated the function on the company email system.

Yet somehow, while writing the column, I couldn’t get out of my head the fact that I totally screwed up on the county’s new holiday slide schedule for trash collection.

I read it about, I got a postcard about it, and I even heard people joke about it. Still when it came my day to slide I screwed up. I wasn’t the only one either. Judging from the number of trash receptacles in my neighborhood that stayed on the curb for an extra day, I had plenty of company.

So I tried to tie the trash schedule and the ‘reply to all’ issue together in my column.

How’d I do?

You can judge for yourself by reading this month’s column here.


Anonymous said...

Just term the piece 'roundup' or 'in review' or something similar, and keep each topic short, using headers. If the items are unrelated, please don't take up nonsense journalism like repeating the same paragraph 20 times - that is what keeps readers fleeing.

Have you noticed books "authored" by famous people using ghost writers? The repeating starts happening in the first chapter and part-way through reading the effort to finish the book becomes too excruciating to continue reading. But publishers flock to that nonsense in hopes of selling the celebrity's name, not the content.

Anonymous said...

There's nothing wrong with 'Reply to All'. The problem is with the original authors that put distribution-list aliases in the 'To' or 'CC' field. Distribution-list aliases should *only* be put in the 'BCC' field. If the message has no individuals as direct recipients, then the author should put his/her name in the 'To' field. If people properly used the BCC field, they wouldn't complain about 'Reply to All' so much.
And one other thing, to the people complaining about Reply to All, please feel free to use your delete button and shut your piehole. If your life is so utterly devoid of hardship that you have the energy to complain about "unnecessary eMail", say a quiet thank you and move along. God could be putting it to you a lot harder than that, be thankful he's giving you such a generous break. It will probably be brief.