Friday, November 14, 2008

101 reasons to learn a lesson

This past Wednesday, at work, I received 101 lessons as to why people should learn a lesson. Specifically, I received 100 lessons from people who did not learn the lesson from the first person's mistake.

On Wednesday morning, my work e-mail received what would seem to have been a spam e-mail. It was one that we had been recently warned about, appearing to originate from someone within the company and asking to have access granted to various security systems. Having been both forewarned and armed with the knowledge that I had no business granting such access, I deleted the e-mail.

The the first lesson came. In the form of a reply to the original e-mail by a person questioning why they were sent the e-mail. Of course, this person hit "reply all", thus sending it to everyone. Isn't it annoying when someone blindly uses "reply all" like that?

Ah, but then the real fun started rolling in. Over the next four or five hours I continued to receive e-mails from people protesting their inability to perform such a task and the likelihood that they were sent the original e-mail by mistake. All of them hit "reply all". I also got e-mails from people who were begging people to stop using "reply all", who also (naturally) had hit "reply all". The best of these was sent in a eye-catching blue, 100 point font - to everyone. In total, 101 "reply all's" were sent out. To everyone.

Oh, and when I say it was sent to everyone, I mean to everyone. Every single employee of this great company for which I work. All 38,000 (give or take) employees. All of it internal e-mail. I could practically smell our e-mail server melting from here. Other e-mails took significantly longer to get through the system. If it weren't so comedic and absurd, it would be downright frustrating.

Anyway, I survived without becoming e-mail cannon fodder. Either people finally wised up (unlikely) or the IT group put a block on everything related to this e-mail chain (more likely).

So, what's the record for the number of "reply all" junk e-mails for you?


Sam said...

good grief, that really does sound like a pain in the proverbial!!!!! Fortunately we don't seem to get that kinda thing at work, but we do have a communications manager who manages to very occasionally email the whole hospital when she just wants to talk to one person!!

Anonymous said...

wow, that would drive me nuts!

I don't think I have a record for that. Somehow I've avoided the junk e mails.

erin said...

That is absurd! I certainly don't have a record like that, but it really is amazing that people aren't aware of the difference between "reply" and "reply all."

euphrony said...

At 20, I was nuts. By the time it hit 50, it blurred into the realm of absurdity (and I was deleting them by the dozen as they came in). At that point you can laugh or you can become Amish and throw away the computer.

JSue said...

Oh holy...I cannot tell you HOW many times that happened to me at work. But I CAN tell you that the local IT guy was on the same e-mail list and received EVERY one that I did, because I could hear his groans and growls with each hit to the mailbox. I finally got to the point where I would set up a "rule" in Outlook to send any related e-mails directly to "la basura." (Yes, I'm showing off my mad Dora skilz) It's all I've got now that I'm a SAHM.

I was cringing thru your whole blog post - I always hated that "Reply to All" button and would like to petition for Microsoft to please hide it far from the "Reply" button. Want to join me???

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