We are all living in a brave new world of online communication and business yet our habits often have not kept up with its many changes.
I am dead in the water on days when my email does not work, as this day has begun.
But the disruption of expected service is not my main point today.
My central point is how we all act in ordinary daily situations.
I occasionally receive typed letters delivered to me through the U.S. postal service that invite a response from me. In the letter they give me their email address for the response.
If they have email, I wonder, why did they not email me in the first place? It would be much quicker.
I receive emails where individuals want my assistance with a subscription matter yet they provide no information to me other than their name and the email address from which the email to me originated.
I have no way of accessing their personal data, or explaining their situation to them. I have to ask them for additional information, which slows the whole process down. For nearly all questions, ultimately I have to give my correspondent to the circulation department. For some this creates an impression that I do not care, which is frustrating for everyone involved.
Nobody is wrong in this. We simply have not gotten used to the new norms.
When I was in junior high and high school more than four decades ago, they used to teach students how to write a business letter. In it all the information that the recipient needed to respond was provided.
We do not have any such norm with email, though there are many individuals who apparently have roots similar to mine and they provide as much information in their emails as they can.
I am grateful for that.
Does this blog make it seem like I am grumpy?
But I guess that’s how I get when I am deprived of any email at all. And it has only been an hour.
Buzz blogger Dave Harper is winner of the 2013 Numismatic Literary Guild Award for Best Blog and is editor of the weekly newspaper “Numismatic News.”