I’m looking for a replacement to curate the Boulder-Denver StartupDigest. If you’re actively involved with local startups and have interest, let me know and we can discuss. My startup, StatsMix, was recently acquired and I’ve decided I need to take some time off. After three consecutive startups and many years without a real vacation, it’s […]
Bad Email Marketing from Priceline
This is one of the worst marketing emails I’ve seen in a while: Priceline.com wants me to fill out a survey for a recent car rental I made through their site. Simple and innocent enough at first glance. What really bothers me with this email is their reason why I should fill out the survey. […]
If only everyone knew how to email efficiently, maybe so many wouldn’t have to claim email bankruptcy. Email overload is an ever increasing problem and Chris Brogan writes an excellent post on how to write email that gets answered. There are some great tips in there, especially the “one decision per email”: It seems counter […]
Technology news and events
Just a follow up to my last post on the news of two local companies – if you’re interested in receiving the latest news on regional (Mid-Atlantic, Southeast, Virginia) news and events, I’ve found the following newsletters to be the most useful:
Pay to email, my take
With AOL and Yahoo potentially charging to guarantee email delivery, I suspect RSS will get more serious consideration from marketers. And how can it not? If this email deal holds up (from what I’ve read it’s not finalized), costs will skyrocket for many publishers ($2.5-$10 per thousand emails sent). My overall take on this is […]
Using Gmail as a personal file server
Engadget (via incorporated subversion and EdTechUK) has a nice article on how to use a Gmail account as a file server. With Gmail accounts providing 1 gig of storage, this appears to be a cool hack. Looks like there’s a 10 MB file size limitation though. Interesting nonetheless.
Study reports that deleted spam is costing billions
Following up on my post concerning the faulty logic used for the Super Bowl productivity waste comes a study from the Center for Excellence in Service at the University of Marylandâ??s Robert H. Smith School of Business and Rockbridge Associates, Inc. calculating the costs of spam. Now donâ??t take my next comments the wrong way. I feel spam is an enormous problem and a productivity drain. What I do have a problem with is the methodology with which this study was performed.
Spamâ??s price tag now reaches $21.58 billion annually in lost productivity according to the results of the 2004 National Technology Readiness Survey (NTRS). Findings from the 2004 NTRS, an annual survey that tracks U.S. consumersâ?? technology opinions and behaviors, indicate that online users in the United States spend an average of three minutes deleting spam each day they check e-mail. Aggregating their usage across the 169.4 million online adults in the United States, this equals 22.9 million hours a week, or $21.58 billion annually when based on the average working wage.
The authors reached a dollar figure by multiplying their 3 minute per day average by the 169.4 million online adults in the U.S. which equates to 22.9 million hours per week. Where do I start with the absurdity? First, “online adults” does not equal “working adults with internet access”. Second, how many of these people are deleting spam that comes to a work email address versus a home / personal email address? To leave this out invalidates the entire study. If an unemployed person spends 3 minutes or 3 hours deleting spam, the action in no way impacts any productivity to any business. Likewise, the casual user checking their AOL email account and spending 3 minutes deleting spam in the evening again does not impact productivity. The key metric here is where the user is checking their email account and to a lesser extent what type of account it is (personal or work).
I recognize and agree that spam is an issue. Really, who doesn’t? Iâ??d prefer to see a well thought approach to measuring its impact though, instead of this nonsense. This just goes to show that statistics can be manipulated to tell any story you want.
While Iâ??m on the subject of spam, letâ??s talk about whatâ??s more annoying and a bigger waste of time in my opinion â?? postal mail spam. I get tremendous amounts of junk mail every single day at home and the office. Once you get your name on someoneâ??s list, itâ??s there for eternity. It takes me about a second to delete email spam. It takes me 20 to 30 times that long to get rid of junk mail. This is mainly because it’s hard to tell the difference anymore between legitimate mail and the junk (especially the mortgage refinance mailings). Unfortunately, I have to actually open the majority of junk mail to make sure there isnâ??t something important Iâ??m throwing away. Now that is a real waste of time.
Deleting Spam Costs Billions, Study Finds – Washington Post
Breaking Windows 2.0