I respect the right of anyone to choose when and how they reply to an email. The person receiving an email has the power to delete, ignore, read, respond immediately or respond whenever they choose. They can even have an automatic response, say over their holiday or weekend, that they are away from work and … Continue reading The Right to Send Anytime, Anywhere, All at Once
In the UK, over 100,000 WhatsApp messages between a former health secretary and government ministers during the COVID-19 pandemic were leaked. The former health secretary, Matt Hancock, shared his WhatsApp messages with a journalist, Isabel Oakeshott, with whom he was collaborating on his book entitled Pandemic Diaries (Hancock with Oakeshott 2022). They essentially co-authored the … Continue reading Confidentiality Online?
Private Emails Are Not (Yet) a Thought Crime
Private Emails? A Personal Perspective on Politicizing Norms of Communication In Orwell’s 1984, Winston Smith opens himself up to accusations of thought crimes for walking onto a street with a shop where he could buy pen and paper. In 2021, politicians and even the UK’s Information Commissioner wonder if ministers are guilty of some criminal … Continue reading Private Emails Are Not (Yet) a Thought Crime
With everyone focused on handwringing issues surrounding social media, such as 'disinformation', and the rising tide of regulatory initiatives, most have forgotten about one of the earliest forms of Internet communication – email, and the real problems this medium is facing. I am not referring to spam email, one of the early crises facing Internet … Continue reading Email Crisis
If You Read an Email Message, Read It All: Responding to a Worrisome Trend
Much is said about how the Internet has changed our communication habits, such as shifting communication to email and text messaging versus pen and paper letters through the post. And I enjoy debates over how email might be effecting our writing styles. But I am noticing a worrisome trend, which is admittedly only anecdotal – … Continue reading If You Read an Email Message, Read It All: Responding to a Worrisome Trend
Pick up the phone!
Ofcom reports that fewer people are using their mobile phones for making phone calls (Williams 2018). The use of smartphones for calls is declining while their use for texting, emailing, searching and using social media is rising. Clearly, this trend is not unique to the UK, nor is it simply limited to the use if … Continue reading Pick up the phone!
Don’t Panic over Fake News
Fake News is a Wonderful Headline but Not a Reason to Panic I feel guilty for not jumping on the ‘fake news’ bandwagon. It is one of the new new things in the aftermath of the 2016 Presidential election. And because purposively misleading news stories, like the Pope endorsing Donald Trump, engage so many people, … Continue reading Don’t Panic over Fake News
The New Status Symbol: A Secret Email Address
I have been so wrapped up in communicating with my colleagues and those who contact me, that I have missed the rise of a new status symbol. I recently took on a task that led me to contact a range of academics, with excellent track records in their respective fields. Some are simply known to … Continue reading The New Status Symbol: A Secret Email Address
Just Pick Up the Phone
Can You Pick Up the Phone? I’ve written about the lost art of writing with a pen. Now I feel like there is a need to explain in plain English that when you are having difficulties communicating via email or other electronic messaging systems that you can use the telephone, what you may know as … Continue reading Just Pick Up the Phone