August 5, 2020

What sucks about email?

Richard @richardesigns

What do you hate, detest or cry yourself to sleep about email?

The floor is open.

  1. 3

    What a great discussion-starter.

    For me? I can't bloody archive or '✅' emails in hey.com

    So I'm going to churn. Moving from gmail to protonmail.com soon.

  2. 2

    It’s 2020 why the hell are we still using tables to align things in email???

    1. 1

      WHHHY?!!!! Oh honestly, if you've ever taught someone some HTML/CSS to build a simple website perhaps using a modern responsive framework and then you introduce them to HTML emails, it's like, forget everything you just learned about best practice and common sense and now we're going to put every style inline and make columns with tables.

      Insanity.

      Oh and half the email clients will tear up what you send them anyway regardless of how many tables inside tables inside tables you make.

      **sigh

      What kind of emails do you send where you need alignment and layout? If you don't mind my asking.

      1. 1

        Nothing specific. I usually use tools like SendGrid for creating templates so my application can send a nicely styled email. I start by using the drag and drop editor in SendGrid, but then I just need to tweak something small. I think to myself I have a 4 year degree in CSCI, I can tackle this minor alignment issue. So I open up the code editor in SendGrid, and 7 tables later I toss my computer out the window.

  3. 1

    I hated the fact that it is so damn hard to generate leads - emails
    I hated the fact that so many emails bounced and affected the performance of email campaigns
    I hated the fact that any outreach to generate leads is a full time job

    The good part of emails is,
    Email outreach can be automated and is the most cost effective lead generation approach after SEO
    And the second good part is that I have developed a tool that generates the email leads in seconds AND verifies them at the same time!

    Happy to share my invention https://prospectrole.com (soon available as a chrome extension)

  4. 1

    I recently had to migrate company emails from one provider to another (AWS's WorkMail to Google's GSuite). Total nightmare. You'd thing that migrating emails would be a breeze after all these years humanity has been using email.

    1. 1

      Indeed. There is no standard then? Why would there be?! I guess AWS kinda want to keep you as a customer. What was the specific problem? Moving the email content itself ?

      1. 1

        Yeah, migrating the inboxes was a pain, also because of GSuite's migrating tool. It should've worked with the Exchange protocol, but it kept giving random errors, because some impersonation permissions were missing (WorkMail is basically a wrapper over an Exchange email server), and there were no ways to fix them from WorkMail. So I had to fall back to a classic IMAP import (connect with the import tool to the inbox from AWS with username/password for each account and copy all the messages, just like a regular email client). So for a day or so until I migrated all emails, I had to manually reset everybody's password to something temporary until I finished the migration. Awful solution, admins shouldn't have anybody's password at any point in time, but at least it worked and now I don't have to deal with WorkMail's shitty UI anymore.

  5. 1

    Times were great when emails only had text based content. Still most of them do today but there are some companies whose emails are nothing but huge, graphic banners in the email.

    1. 2

      and your email client is like 'we blocked images' so it looks completely wrong anyway. Silly email.

      I guess people just like to share images. How would you share an image?

      1. 1

        Exactly, you understand my point. Well, If I had to include images, I would follow a certain format.

        Like 80% text and 20% image part. By adding GIFs, maybe.

  6. 1

    It depends on what your doing with it. For straightforward interactions it's great. When you try to use it to handle more complex decisions, or you want real actual control over where the conversation leads it's completely horrible. Anyone can hijack the thread, and eventually the wall of text just gets insane. We wound up creating Uclusion because David and I came from this massive corporate environment with email threads that lasted for hundreds of messages, and we just couldn't take it anymore.

    1. 1

      What a delightful looking product. Stop reacting, start responding. Do you have good traction?

      I have never had the pleasure of working in a corporate environment. 100+ email threads sounds completely horrible. I find it hard enough to sift through 10 emails in a thread.

      What were the threads even about at 100+ ? I mean, that just sounds like it needed a phone call or something higher bandwidth.

      I wonder how much time is spent writing email instead of working. oh whoops, is writing email not working?

      1. 1

        We're getting good signup traction, but our initial guess on how people wanted to onboard was way off the mark, so our funnel is having too many dropouts there.
        100+ email threads usually start with somebody asking some group a fairly innocuous question, then that group getting into a debate for about 20 emails. After that, somebody yanks the thread completely offtopic, and it takes another 15 to get on topic. Then the original debate continues, but most people have forgotten the previous thread because of the off-topic track, and the cycle repeats a few times. Bonus points if there is a "please stop sending these emails" for a few dozen messages.

        Unfortunately many people confuse writing an email with working. If you have to code, it's not really the same thing. That's why Uclusion tries really hard to keep discussions limited to specific actionable things: it keeps the overhead to a minimum.

  7. 1

    There's too much of it. I love email, but I'm always drowning in it. Wish I could sort my gmail inbox even more.

    1. 1

      What do you love about email?

      In terms of the quantity are you just super popular and have loads of correspondence or is it mostly marketing and spam?

      1. 1

        Both. All my marketing emails and alerts go to their designated tabs. My primary inbox is another story.

        I only have so many tabs. I would like to separate personal emails and categorize my professional emails.

        I do like email because I can get all the details in writing, I can choose to track emails when pitching, I can search years later for information or contacts, I can take an item off my to-do list at midnight by scheduling the email for later, etc.

  8. 1

    I get too many of them.

    1. 1

      Nice if they're business or friends. Do you do that thing in the morning when you wake up and delete all the email you don't want?

  9. 1

    Replied or forwarded contents in the emails come with the body. There is always a email client that is having trouble extracting the latest email content. I wish there was a standard for this.

    1. 1

      For sure, it gets messy between clients. Do you find the order of forwarded and replied emails gets messed up sometimes? I find that so confusing.

  10. 1

    What I hate about email is it's not used enough by those who bind me to synchronous, real-time platforms.

    1. 1

      Interesting, so I'm sure I've understood correctly, you like using email but what you dislike about it is that people contacting you do so on platforms with IM such as LinkedIn or Slack and the only way to reply is via that platform. You probably even get an email notification?

      1. 1

        Yes, except I don't set email notifications for messaging platforms. I have always practiced inbox zero since well before it was cool, so I'm more efficient and productive with an asynchronous, non real-time channel like email.

        1. 1

          Have you read Deep Work by Cal Newport?

          1. 1

            I know the book but haven't read it.

  11. 1

    Not being able to turn off reply, so people can't use it when really they should use reply all.

    1. 1

      Amazing yep. I love that line in an email at the bottom that reads PLEASE REPLY ALL Lol.

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