Blogs » Your Advocate: an editor's blog » Do you recall a time before e-mail?


About 15 years ago, I worked at a newspaper that, if you can imagine it, did not yet have e-mail.

I had come from a newspaper that already had e-mail, so that qualified me as an expert on this cutting-edge technology. I recall talking to everyone about the do's and don'ts of email. For example:

-- Don't write anything in an e-mail that you wouldn't leave in a note on someone's desk in plain view of everyone else.

-- Never write e-mails in anger.

-- Use e-mail only to pass along information, such as phone messages, and not to criticize someone's work.

These still seem like pretty good rules, although I can't say I've always followed them myself. And I laugh at the quaint notion that there was ever a time before e-mail.

All of this came back to me because our e-mail crashed this weekend. The outage made us wonder how we ever produced a newspaper before e-mail. Readers and sources send us letters to the editor, calendar items, press releases and more. In an hour, I might personally receive 60 e-mails.

The worst part of the crash was we lost all of the message sent last week. We've tried to alert readers to resend any messages, but we expect something will get overlooked.

Our apologies if we miss something you sent. It never hurts to call the newsroom (361-574-1222) to be sure we received your missive.

I better cut this short -- I need to go check my e-mail.