In places where there are indoor mask mandates like where I live in California there is the phenomenon now of loud talking. What used to be the punchline of a Seinfeld episode is now very much the reality for millions of people here in the LA area and beyond.
After a year and a half of wearing masks indoors (and still outdoors at times), the process of ordering coffee, shopping for clothing, getting paint at Home Depot et al. has trained us all to basically shout at one another. Add this to the fact that it’s more difficult to pick up on non-verbal cues through a mask, and it’s not hard to understand why there’s been a general rise in incivility in public spaces throughout the pandemic.
There are also the ways that we physically strain ourselves to speak to people through masks and to hear what they say back to us. Craning our necks around plastic barriers, tilting our heads closer to the person whose speech is muffled, and struggling to see where we’re going through fogged glasses has led to a rise in various repetitive stress disorders that only add to the misery. (Obviously, we’re not opining on the pros or cons of use of masks in Tech Essentials, but as always, we’re pointing out how changes in regular behavior may have unintended consequences when it comes to technology.)
Getting used to speaking at this higher volume means that we often carry the volume of our voices home with us. I find myself at times home, unmasked asking my wife, “DO YOU KNOW WHERE THE REMOTE IS?” She then gives me a look of concern that I may be losing my hearing, and I feel that this is a situation repeating itself across the world millions of times.
Essentially, this is as if we were all required to type with ALL CAPS to get our points across. Fortunately, with RMail, one can send a Registered Email™ message that emphasizes the importance of the message by its look/design and helps one get their message of importance across without ALL CAPS, which is the most intimidating form of typewritten communications.
These days, I’ve trained myself to view emails with ALL CAPS in the body text (and especially the subject) line with suspicion. Many of my friends in high HR places have told me to “never interpret tone in emails”, but ALL CAPS really doesn’t leave much room for interpretation. In fact, I would have loved to put the subject line of this message in ALL CAPS to bring the point home, but email filters would probably block it—a sign of how pernicious ALL CAPS has become. Best to emphasize importance through more subtle cues using RMail—as if the email itself were not wearing a mask!
If you missed our multitude of short 2-minute end user “how-to” videos on RMail, YOU CAN EASILY FIND THEM VERY WELL ORGANIZED (CLICK) HERE 😊.
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