Email has become such a nightmare

I know, it’s called enshittification. I suppose I’m not saying anything that has not been said thousands of times before, but my frustration forces me to cry out into the night. I’m also aware that I am partly to blame. I hate using email, chats, forums, whats-app, messaging, social-media and I barely see the utility of telephones, and still have a hard time making and answering calls.

Some of that is of course down to my personal psychological defects. I get that. But I think the feeling becomes more and more relatable for folks by virtue that these things are just becoming awful experineces. Email has become as central to social integration as snail-mail has, so I can’t get away from it. I have gotten away from pretty much every other tech based communication platform outside of messaging platforms at work, but emails hooks are inescapable.

So I’m talking about the problems with email, but I guess the problems exist elsewhere as well. Let’s look at my frustrations:

  • The volume. So much noise. So little signal. So much.
  • The scams. If we accept that most advertising and marketing falls somewhere on the scamming scale, every time I parse my inbox I do a lot of scam evaluation.
  • The painful begging on the unsubscribe page. The begging of course sucks. Worse are the often tiny text I have to find and navigate to unsubscribe in the first place.
  • The work: 20 years ago, checking my email was fun. Maybe a girl I liked wrote me, maybe a friend was keeping in touch. Maybe a club or activity I cared about had an update. Yeah, there would also be work & chore related stuff in there, the ratio was such that it was mostly pleasant to check the mail. Now taxes happen via email, not snail mail. Bills and banks too. Yuck. I have to overcome dread everytime I log in to my email.

I am pretty confident that I spend more time deleting useless noise, filtering spam and scams, and unsubscribing from services than I do in reading and writing emails to parties that I care about. The ratio of pleasurable communication to displeasing communication looks worse.