Yesterday I answered an e-mail message from a friend who asked which account I checked regularly. It was a valid question, since I often apologize to correspondents for late responses by saying (honestly) that I hadn’t checked the receiving account in a while.
Curiosity piqued by my friend’s query, I began counting my e-mail accounts. To my horror, I found that I currently have—are you ready for this?—34 e-mail accounts!
But wait, there’s a perfectly logical reason for this. When you read it, you’ll wonder why everyone doesn’t have 30-some e-mail accounts.
OK, so here’s my e-mail account breakdown:
Education accounts: Official school account, student recognition affairs, Second Life avatars.
Social networking: Mostly Twitter (yes, several).
Personal-professional writing accounts: E-zine subscriptions, my blogs, writers’ associations, online courses.
Strictly personal: Corresponding with family and close friends, nutrition and other health-focused membership sites, regular financial transactions.
Junk mail: The deluge that comes after vendors sell your name (I know the standard disclaimer, but how else does it get out there so fast?) to other vendors as soon as you order something from them.
Required e-accounts: Pay-TV, Internet and phone service and (formerly) any Apple/iTunes purchase or license, Adobe CS subscriptions (will be glad when that and similar ones go away).
That’s about it. How did I come up with this dandy taxonomy? It just evolved. I hadn’t even thought about it until answering my friend’s query.
I must admit that it’s a heck of a job keeping up with which account I use for what. Add categories to the mix and it really gets complicated because at some point, categories get unique to each account.
So I’ve determined that no later than this time next month, I’ll reduced this horde to no more than 7 or 8. Fewer if possible. How hard can that be? I mean, after all, did you notice above that I even have e-mail accounts for my Second Life avatars? Those and most others in that first category are unquestionably disposable.
All that’s easy enough. The hard part, I’m afraid, is not giving in to the temptation to create new accounts in place of the ones I decide to discard.