Thank you for sending me forwards about why our friendship is like a flower blooming or a box of wine or whatever. I’ll never send that on to six friends or the person who sent it to me, but it always makes me happy to know my name was added to the list. Likewise, I lurve funny kid stories. Or even, truthfully, the cutesy little animated kittens and puppies. There, I admit it.

I’m really not a total hater, I promise.

However, I think the time is nigh to discuss the logic of a forward where you add your name to a list of some sort that is embedded in the email. Now, as much as it might be interesting to know that Cheryl from Dayton has a birthday on May 4th, you reallyneed to stop and think about this type of format for a fwd. So let’s do a wee bit of math, m’kay?

Let’s pretend Bob opens the “sign this petition to tell the world Obama is a secret muslim antichrist”  fwd, wherin once X number of people have signed the petition, it will be sent to the White House and righteousness will commence. Bob is excited about this kind of justice, and that there are only 437 signatures needed, so he promptly sends it to ten of his friends. Those ten people excitedly add their names to the list and forward to ten new people. Each. So at this point, friends, do you even realizethat with just a few steps there are now at least 100 of those fwds floating around? Can you see why that’s very quickly becoming an exponential joke? It’s stupidly ridiculous.

And even if I weren’t mocking the subject matter – though truthfully, let’s be serious here, how often do you see these types of forwards for something like Darfur fundraising or special needs legislation? – there is a fundamental validity that is negated with this type of OBVIOUSLY ILLOGICAL format. Respect is lost all around when these things are perpetuated.

I’m just telling you this because I care.  Really.

So this is a friendly suggestion to create a petition people go toto sign, like ipetition or other similar sites, because if you really feel strongly enough to rally the particular demographic you’re aiming for, at least make it legitimate.

Thanks so much,

Jen

P.S. Thank you for having slowed down on the apocalyptic poisoned-needles-under-the-gas-pump type of crap. Snopes is everyone’s friend.

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