Email Versus Social Networks

Email Used By 91% Of Internet Users

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There has been a lot of discussion about email becoming an obsolete application and that social networking will eventually take its place.

Max Kalehoff

The Pew Internet & American Life Project noted recently that 91 percent of Internet users between the ages of 18 and 64 send or read email, more than any social network.  Max Kalehoff raises some interesting points about why email is still relevant on his blog AttentionMax.

Kalehoff writes, "Think about it: Most social networks require your email address to sign up. Then they try to upload your email address book in order to communicate with your contacts. I can’t think of a social network I belong to that doesn’t ask me for my email address every time I log in. In fact, I find myself turning off the default email notifications in most social networks I sign up for!"

To build his case he points to a New York Times blog about Internet companies building their email services into social networks. "Yahoo and Google realize they have this information (email address books) and can use it to build their own services that connect people to their contacts."

Kalehoff is still a fan of social networks and believes they have a big future but finds email to be more reliable form of communication. He writes, "I hope the benefits of the latest wave of social networks will begin to merge seamlessly with the simplicity, compatibility and utility of email. That includes integrated profiling, information feeds, social-network analysis, privacy and controls."

Email Versus Social Networks
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