Electronic Mail and the Written Word Essay

1167 WordsMar 30, 20155 Pages
Imagine a world without cyber culture technology. Picture using telegrams, typewriters, and payphones to connect to the world, sending all correspondence through mail, and leaving messages on home answering machines. At one time, these outdated items were the wave of the future. Mark Twain couldn’t believe his eyes when he saw the typewriter. Why aren’t these technical advances not good enough anymore? Why have these ways of communicating become historical artifacts? Most of one’s answer lies in the fact that people are constantly looking for faster, more convenient ways to achieve their goals, and cyber culture does just that. Tools such as e-mail provide one with a way to write and communicate with others in a very convenient way. The world we live in is very fast paced. Tasks such as hand writing and mailing letters have become too time consuming. As Dennis Baron writes in his essay “From Pencils to Pixels”, “…the physical effort of handwriting, crossing out, revising, cutting and pasting, in short, the writing practices I had been engaged in regularly since the age of four, now seemed to overwhelm and constrict me, and I longed for the flexibility of digitized text” (Tribble and Trubek 36). Besides the troubles of writing a letter, one would then have to stamp and seal the envelope, and rely on the trusty post office to deliver your letter in a timely manner. As essayist Adam Gopnik states, “Ten years ago, even the most literate of us wrote maybe half a dozen letters a year” (181). Ten years ago, one would have more than likely picked up the phone rather than sit down and write a letter. E-mail, in a way, has digitized the letter. It has created a way where people can conveniently correspond daily. One can e-mail a friend in California, a professor at Eastern, a grandparent in Florida, and a spouse at work all in a matter of minutes. E-mail, in some

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