If you thought email is all pervasive and even your 80 year old grandpa can use it easily …think again.
As part of our preparations for the IndicThreads.com Java User Meet, we at IndicThreads had got in touch with various newspapers in our city. We were hoping that they could carry details of the meet in the Events of the Week section in their respective papers.
During one such interaction with the editor at perhaps the highest selling daily newspaper in India, I heard a classic statement. Thought I should share it.
I called up their office so as to tell them about the meet. In true media style, the human was rude and his tone almost suggested that he was the ruler and I a measly subject. He told me to fax the event details to their office. I asked if I could send an email instead and surprisingly he agreed and provided me an email address. I immediately dashed off an email.
If any of you have interacted with the press in India (don’t know how true this is about other countries) you would know that the Indian media people think that they are the busiest people on the planet and so replying to emails is way below their dignity. I won’t be surprised to hear that a journalist who replies to emails violates some sacrosanct rule of journalism and so is thrown out of his/her job.
Human Resources people come a close second to journalists when it comes to not replying to emails. But that’s another story.
So obviously I got no reply for 4 days.
Worried that the paper will not carry my item, I again called and somehow managed to get to the same person I had spoken to earlier. I told him about my email and that I had received no acknowledgement or reply.
His reply was a classic that I absolutely haven’t managed to get over as yet. He said
"The Email Man is on leave. No emails are being checked!"
Wow! Email Man! On Leave!!
What was that?
I somehow managed to control my laughter and asked him what I could do now. Would the email man be coming back anytime soon?
He suggested that if I want the event to be listed, I should come over to their office immediately. So I dropped everything else and rushed to their office. The human in question, ofcourse did not have the courtesy to meet me. He told the security guard to inform me that he was busy and the security man should accept the meet information I had with me.
You thought all’s well that ends well?? Nope..Everybody concerned with IndicThreads scanned and rescanned the next day’s paper for the event listing and guess what..There was nothing there!!
I hope the email man is now back and things are functioning in a better fashion at the newspaper. If this is the case with India’s biggest daily newspaper, I dread to think how smaller and lesser journalists would be functioning.
The arrogance and technological incompetence of most in the press is amazing. One of my relatives has coined a nice term for it "technologically challenged"
Have you ever faced something similar?
The next time you send IndicThreads.com a mail and we don’t reply, you know what the reason is "The Email Man Is On Leave" 🙂