JournalismPakistan.com June 26, 2015
Twenty years of gaffes and now they come up with a ‘UNDO’ option for emails sent in anger, in a rush, by error, default, to the wrong people and other deranged CC and BCC dispatches not meant for the people receiving them.
Often about the people receiving them. Ouch.
I once was invited to a UN conference and they sent me an economy ticket and I wrote to a friend in lengthy detail about the crummy stingy guys at the UN who send you full fare economy when Bizz class is often cheaper and I sent my colorful diatribe to the UN instead.
Having said this I have to admit I am a bit concerned about the 30 seconds option. It is far too little. If written in anger I won’t go into ‘regret’ mode immediately making “UNDO’ a moot point. I need more time to realize the repercussions of my hasty act.
Then the technical exercise. Go to ‘settings’ and locate the right legend to click. In 30 seconds I won’t even get my mouse to place the cursor where it should go and all this time there is this email straining at the leash to rush into the ether. Why can’t they just consider that most of us are slow-motion people unused in large measure to driving fast on the information highway. We are more like 1.2 cylinder cars sort of motoring along on the scenic route.
Thirty seconds is not enough. We will not be able to save our skins. In fact because the time given is so short we may even create more confusion and end up in deeper and more choppy waters.
These manufacturers seem to think the whole world are ace hackers and are capable of maneuvering cheerfully past the many obstacles on the Net. The contrary is more valid. We have no idea how low our control levels are and we just hope we got it right.
It took me 10 years to discover that my Google history could be scanned and read. Another five to discover I could put similar files into a folder and several months before I learnt how to find the folder.
I still do not know what a zip file is and how to unzip it.
So, while we are mighty grateful for this courtesy extended to millions of us backward netizens (like bad car drivers we are the majority) can it be more realistic like three minutes.
I don’t think the world will crash if my answer or my reaction or my assault on the senses is delayed by 180 seconds.
At least that is fair enough and gives me the space to figure out that what I have just done needs to be undone.
I am dropping bricks.
I am losing friends.
I am making enemies.
I have a great collection of faux pas but this one is up there unless I can go to settings and unset.
There will be repercussions oh no what did I do this wasn’t meant for you but now you know and telling you in a fresh email that it wasn’t meant for you will only compound the felony.
How many of us have sat there staring at the screen with that terrible sensation of doom as the word ‘SENT’ appears sealing your fate.
On any other day it would be ‘sending’ and ‘still working’ but when you are speeding into trouble it goes in a jiff… come back, please, I am sorry.
(The writer is a Senior Editorial Advisor of Khaleej Times and the paper’s former Editor. He has also been the Editor of Gulf News, Gulf Today, Emirates Today and Bahrain Tribune)
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