If this sounds familiar, you’re not alone. In a world where communication––whether long distance or from an office down the hall––is essentially free, we have become inundated with messages with no way to stop it.
According to a recent study by technology and market research firm Radicati Group, people around the world send up to 182 billion emails everyday and 67 trillion emails a year, and this number is only growing. The number of active email accounts grew from 3.3 billion in 2012 to 3.9 billion last year, and is expected to grow by 6% in each of the next four years.
What was invented as a convenience has gradually become an impediment or distraction. In fact, Clive Thompson, author of “Smarter Than You Think: How Technology is Changing Our Minds for the Better,” believes that email has actually become a barrier to productivity and efficiency in the workplace.
“You make it easy for people to do something, they will do more of it,” Thompson said. “People feel the need to include 10 other people on an email just to let them know they are being productive at work. But as a result, it ends up making those other 10 people unproductive because they have to manage that email.”
While many startups including Mailbox, Xobni, and Sparrow, have invented various smart-mailboxes in an attempt to solve this issue, many are considering a more extreme option to resolve their over-emailed existence––declare email bankruptcy. Simply select all and hit delete.
Is email still your primary form of communication at work? How do you deal when your inbox begins to pile up?
This article can be found in its original form on The New York Times.