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It seems like everyone has turned on their "send an automatic reply when you read this" feature on their e-mail. As a reader you realize that automatic is a misnomer. You the reader still have to ok the sending of the "yes I read your freakin' email, but unfortunately I'm not a cat person," (ok, that may not be exactly how it is worded). Lately, being the me that I am, I have taken to nixing the replies. Unless it is something inconsequential that has gone out to the entire company. Then I let the reply go, close the message, mark it as unread, re-open and send another reply in hopes that if I do that enough times their email box will explode. OK, you're right. That doesn't really work. But I wish it did.

Anyway, I've compiled a small list of emails that probably don't require confirmation of receipt:

"Hey everybody! There's leftover macaroni salad in the fridge in the small break room."

"Hey everyone in the company whose last name starts with A or B. I get a free razor if I forward this to 50 people. Guess what. You're number 39!"

"Hey everyone, check out the pictures of my grandkids finger-painting! Look how much bigger they've gotten since yesterday's batch of chocolate pudding for lunch pictures."

"Does anyone know how to use the fax machine?"

OK ... as I think about this, I don't think the problem is the auto replies. I think it's too much email to begin with. Perhaps if we all made it our goal to send only emails that were important enought to warrant some kind of official confirmation of delivery ...


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