How people use email

From a comment to Mitch Kapor’s Chandler weblog.
1. People are more efficient when related messages are grouped together and the groups are in rough priority order.
2. People want to be able to see all their “to-do” messages — ones that they need to read, respond to, or act upon — easily.
3. (or maybe 2b). When a message has no more pending actions, people want to remove it from their list of “to-do” messages.
4. People want to execute actions with one or fewer clicks.
5. Old messages are a valuable resource.
6. The faster and better a Search tool is, the less important it is to file messaages.
7. Fuzzy-logic or “scoring” filters are much more accurate than the “sudden death” filters that most email clients now have.
8. Most people won’t customize their own setup, but are usually willing to import customizations that other people have made.
9. Messages that are to you and only you are usually more important than messages where you’re one of many recipients.
10. Some people (e.g. customer service reps) answer the same questions over and over, but computers are not quite smart enough to be able to figure out which response is appropriate.
and MORE

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