A timely e-mail reality check from The Economist
Yet despite recurrent complaints that “e-mail is broken”, little seems to change. Other collaboration tools have popped up in recent years—including instant messaging, blogs, wikis (web pages that users can edit), social networks such as Facebook and MySpace, web-based applications and micro-blogging services like Twitter—but none has managed to dethrone e-mail. Indeed, many of these services rely on e-mail as an underlying signalling mechanism. When someone posts a comment on your blog, sends you a message on Facebook or starts following you on Twitter, how do hear about it? You get an automated e-mail. Accordingly, people commonly use a combination of various messaging and collaboration tools, each with their own strengths and weaknesses, in both their personal and business lives.