E-mail is so convenient ... but it comes with pitfalls

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I don’t know about you, but I like nothing more than receiving a hand-written letter.

There is just something so pleasing about finding a beautifully penned envelope amongst the bills when your post gets delivered.

And it means so much more when someone has went to the trouble to track down nice paper or card instead of taking the easy virtual route of sending an e-mail.

Unfortunately I don’t get very many letters. The only person who regularly writes to me is an elderly aunt and I spend more time trying to decipher her chicken scratch than noting what she actually has to say, so the odd time I get a letter from a friend it is much appreciated.

However, an e-mail is just such a quick and easy way to stay in touch with people and, since I got my new all-singing, all-dancing smart phone, I can send them to my cousin in Texas or my friend in London on my daily commute. I must admit, I now know far more about what is going on with them than when we used to write. There would be weeks, if not months, between letters, with heading to post office to pay the postage taking up more time than the actual writing.

But there are pitfalls with e-mails that are impossible with letters.

I had a good chuckle to myself at the wedding planner who accidentally sent an e-mail about an ‘unsuitable’ pair who had been shown round her swanky venue to the couple themselves.

Although I did feel a wee bit sorry for the them, after all it can’t be nice to be told someone thinks you’re not good enough for their stately home, I was more upset for the wedding planner.

She must have been completely mortified when she realised what she had done and, let’s face it, we all talk about people when we think we are out of earshot don’t we?

I’ve been on both the receiving end and the mortified end of e-mail mishaps.

A few years ago my friends and I were using e-mail to arrange a trip to the theatre. I accidentally replied to the group saying I wasn’t happy about one woman who had been invited because she still hadn’t paid me for the last trip we took, which was booked my credit card.

Suffice to say she promptly paid me the outstanding money, didn’t go on the trip and hasn’t been overly friendly to me since.

But I got my comeuppance soon after when a work colleague sent me an e-mail in error which described me as snobby!

Their comments made me re-evaluate my opinions but it wasn’t nice to have your faults printed in black and white and send to your inbox.

Letters are so much more reliable - you’ll never accidentally address the envelope to the person you are discussing!

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