Stop me if you’ve heard this one.
Someone sends an email to a distribution list. Someone replies to all, and people start asking for removal, also replying to all. Snarky comments ensue. Inbox is stuffed with replies to all.
You know the drill.
So, yesterday morning, someone sent an innocuous request to a sales distribution list, asking a very common question, i.e. who manages so-and-so account. What followed was one of the nuttiest mail storms I’ve seen in a long time.
A day and what seems like 200 messages later, it’s finally over, or someone has pulled the plug. This one was different in a couple ways. First, because we use a self-service mail list system, the people asking to be removed were met with the usual responses on how to do that themselves.
However, these people didn’t show as belonging to the lists that were mailed, so they couldn’t remove themselves. Bummer. Oh, and among the many message was one from one of the top executives in the company, asking to stop the insanity.
That didn’t work, and the storm went around the world and back to where it started in the Pacific timezone. There were usual annoyed replies (to all, natch) and the intelligence tests (again, sent to all), along with a nice shouting paragraph of an email.
All this reminded me of a singular pain point we had hoped to address with Connect, i.e. search plus complete profiles make these requests moot.
So, if I manage a certain account, all I need to do is add that to my profile in Connect, and anyone who searches for that account name can find me, without spamming the universe.
This use case applies to any size business, and it’s one of many ways a social network can be used for business.
Now for the bad news. The adoption curve hasn’t caught up yet, making this a partial solution. Add to that the path of least resistance problem that leads people to use email as a crutch to find information when they’re strapped for time.
I don’t want to focus on the negatives because this way of sharing information within a company, i.e. by index, rather than query, is the future. In five years, this type of spam should be the subject of wayback jokes.
What do you think? Were you privy to this spam thread? Personally, I found it funny (not ha-ha, but interesting), and I’m always amazed at the irony of these things.
Find the comments and share your thoughts.