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Communication channels - email vs instant messengers - morfizm

Sep. 26th, 2018 02:31 pm Communication channels - email vs instant messengers

I am getting increasingly more annoyed when people send me important stuff over IM. If I say it's okay, it means, I'll *have to* regularly check IMs or set up e-mail notifications to satisfy an implied expectation that important stuff won't be ignored. I don't want to do either of these things.

There are too many different messengers and their number is growing. Skype, Telegram, Viber, Kik, FB messenger, G+. Each new messenger is a new app, which means:

1. Extra maintenance: installing updates, maintaining security - creating and remembering a password, updating the app, spending time on stupid in-app announcements like news, adjusting to UI design changes that IM developers roll out every fucking half a year, and so on.

2. Extra time spent daily or regularly to check messages in all of them.

3. Extra space on my phone (yes, a that's a limited resource) and extra slowdown if I keep it running.

4. Extra time spent consolidating messages in one place (so I could use them in my time management and project management). It's actually an interoperability nightmare. It's hard to move data like text, pictures or videos between different apps. Export-import functions are all different, sometimes buggy, sometimes non-existent. What I often do is I take a screenshot of a message (and it's multiple screenshots in case of a longer conversation) and then I compose an e-mail to myself, attaching these images, so I could get it in e-mail and mark for follow-up.

5. Archival nightmare. With just e-mail I can conveniently search all e-mails from any computer. If I change computers, I can re-install Outlook, move the PST file, and it's all there. Many IMs won't preserve and transfer your chat history. Sometimes they just upgrade to a new version and clear it - there's no guarantee they won't do it. It's also a real PITA to search across apps.

6. Privacy nightmare. A lot of people (in the past - hand-crafted list of contacts, the latest trend - all of my phone contacts) will know when I am online, and will try to "catch me" for a chat. This is particularly terrible, because:
- If I am online, it doesn't mean I am online for you. In overwhelming majority of cases it's exactly the opposite: I am online because I had a pre-arranged chat with someone else, so I am busy and it's a bad time for a conversation.
- People assume that I read what they send me and take action, either creating an expectation that I won't fulfill, or causing me to complicate my workflow and spend extra time transferring their messages to e-mail.
- It bypasses the normal process of scheduling a conversation with me, which is via e-mail. I don't want to give someone a preference just because they're using a stupid IM and they're currently online there. I am not going to promote usage of IMs.

Current Mood: annoyedannoyed

7 comments - Leave a commentPrevious Entry Share Next Entry


Date:September 26th, 2018 09:32 pm (UTC)

I feel your pain.

Date:September 26th, 2018 09:34 pm (UTC)
Thanks, bro.
Date:September 26th, 2018 09:42 pm (UTC)
А ещё некоторые мессенджеры имеют такую особенность: или не показывают картинку, или сразу грузят ее в память телефона. Что сильно ухудшает ситуацию в пункте три.
Date:September 26th, 2018 10:39 pm (UTC)
Date:September 27th, 2018 03:38 am (UTC)
Once upon a time.. Before the era of smart phones.. This problem was somewhat similar. The messengers multiplied like bunnies, and everyone had an account with ICQ, MSN, AIM or something similar. In my case, it was the requirement of the school that I get an account on one of these platforms to collaborate with the team over group projects.
I had to use an aggregator (methinks Trillium) to view all IMs from all messengers in a single view, and to (drum roll) setup a common logging directory for all messages.

Nowadays, my view for the following communication channels is (sorted from lowest priority to highest)
- facebook (including FB messenger) - lowest priority. I have no guarantee that I would be checking it regularly. It is more of "when I have time during lunch/in the airport/etc". Also none of the topics are critical, and I don't do any business correspondence over this platform (unlike others)
- phone messengers (mainly skype and whatsapp, also SMS texts) are of equal priority. I refuse to join other ones (i.e viber, telegram) unless I have to
- email
- skype for business
- phone calls

Date:September 27th, 2018 11:01 am (UTC)
А у меня K-9 в телефоне, а в нем все е-mail-ы и это экономит силы на просмотр и память телефона. А вайбер и вацап + скайп отдельно. Но это не мешает людям писать и звонить круглосуточно.
Date:October 2nd, 2018 10:03 am (UTC)
Мда, обилие мессенджеров и необходимость постоянно проверять уведомления очень раздражает.