PRESIDENT’S POST – A Modest Proposal for Taming the Mainstay of Modern Technology Known As Email

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May 2011
by Florrie Binford Kichler

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by Florrie Binford Kichler


A Modest Proposal for Taming the Mainstay of Modern Technology Known As Email

(with apologies to Jonathan Swift)

Jonathan Swift, in his iconic (and ironic) masterpiece, “A Modest Proposal,” calmly and rationally makes a case as to why the Irish should raise their children as food for their countrymen—pointing out that such a solution would solve overpopulation and reduce poverty.

I’m not going so far as to recommend that publishers eat their young.

I’m not even going to urge that publishers stop writing, reading, or endlessly debating about the future of the book. After all, there would then be no need for conferences, Webinars, e-newsletters, or blogs, which would bring an entire industry to its knees. I’m not that heartless.

Nor am I going to advocate that we burn all the print books in order to eliminate coffee-stained and dog-eared returns, getting it there overnight—and endless debates about the future of the book.

What I am going to propose—which some may think is far worse than a bonfire of paper and ink—is a moratorium on email.

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