Don't Hit 'Send' ... Yet
The Internet's Lightning Speed Is No Excuse For Shoddy Communication
By Alicia Orr Suman
I just figured out how to adjust the "send" option on my laptop's e-mail. It had been set to send all messages immediately—big mistake. Several times I've hit send only to regret it a few seconds later. A half-written message inadvertently goes out, or worse, a message written hastily is sent without my really having first thought of the consequences of sending it.
The absolute wonder of the Internet is that it allows us to communicate at light speed: Just click and go. But it carries with it an inherent danger.
"Remember Internet Time? ...
the phrase became canonical
in the late 1990s. It was used to
describe the accelerated pace at
which, in a Web-enabled world,
all business was supposedly
going to be conducted."
—The Wall Street Journal's Lee Gomes writing in his column "Boomtown" (10/28/02)
Gomes later jests, "This is your brain on speed." I get a cold shiver when I think how quickly and often stupidly we use the Internet—especially e-mail—in our business and marketing communications.
Speed at Your Own Risk
The speed the 'Net gives us to get messages out can be useful in creating and delivering marketing messages faster than ever before. But sadly, we all too often misuse this medium by not critically reviewing what it is we're sending.
"One can't help but suspect that Internet Time was a convenient excuse for companies of the period to sell stuff not fully tested, if not downright shoddy."
While Gomes' comment above speaks mainly of product cycles, I believe his criticisms to be equally relevant in the communications space.
Here are some ideas to consider before you send your next Internet message: