You've Got (Too Much) Mail by ProQuest


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									THE MEDIA CENTER                                                                   by Mary Alice Anderson
                                                                                         Lead Media Specialist
                                                                                    Winona Area Public Schools
                                                                                            Winona, Minnesota

                                                 You’ve Got (Too Much) Mail

                                      MUCH has changed since we                   I have four accounts: one for my
                                      enjoyed the 1998 romantic comedy         district job, one personal, and two
                                      You’ve Got Mail starring Tom Hanks       for online teaching work at two uni-
                                      and Meg Ryan. Falling in love over       versities. I love and use them all. If
             We’ve all got            the web is no longer unique. We no       I don’t heed my own advice, email I
                                      longer race to our computers if “mail    send may be unwanted. What’s a
                                      call” rings or Eudora chimes. Edu-       busy educator to do? A few tips,
        too much email.               cators have stopped discussing           along with a few illustrative anec-
                                      whether or not to give students          dotes, follow.
                                      email accounts on the district web-
        Without careful               site; we now assume they have their      SUGGESTIONS FOR RECIPIENTS
                                      own. It’s no longer, “Do you have an      ■ Treat email as you would
                                      email?” It’s now, “Which account            much of the paper mail you
       management, we                 should I use when I write to you?”          receive. Reply immediately,
                                      We’ve all got too much email. With-         toss it, or set it aside to deal
                                      out careful management, we can              with later.
                                      find ourselves confused and spend-        ■ Reply, even if it’s just to reply
      can find ourselves              ing too much time sorting it all out.       with “Done,” “Got it,” or “I
                                         A very tech-savvy and competent,         received your message and
                                      organized person arrived at a meet-         will get back to you shortly.”
             confused and             ing 2 hours late; an administrator          Almost all messages deserve a
                                      sent out a message about a very in-         courteous acknowledgement.
                                      teresting learning opportunity with       ■ Use the delete key when you

     spending too much                a subject heading designating a long-       know the message does not
                                      past event; another person emailed          deserve a personal response
                                      a message with an ambiguous sub-            or is truly just junk. At least
                                      ject heading announcing an event            look at the subject heading so
           time sorting it            that sounded like a scam. A distant         you don’t miss something
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