We are becoming digital pack rats: There’s no greater manifestation of the pack rat syndrome than with email. I’ve always thought that email retention is a disease. I know people (I used to be one of them) who have CDs of email archives from when they first started using the medium 10 years ago.
Personal computers — our jukeboxes, photo labs, accountants and film studios — are becoming the proverbial junk drawer, scattered with scads of must-have information. Sister devices such as digital cameras, MP3 players and digital video recorders overflow with often barely a bite of spare storage.
The ravenous nature of society coupled with the quest for convenience has spawned a nation of digital pack rats, eager to possess every gigabyte of media they can download, and too greedy — or lazy — to let it go.
I make it a point to gleefully delete old emails. Sometimes I’ll just highlight the bottom half of my Sent Items folder and hit “Delete” just to prove a point. I know people for which this action would send them into convulsions.
Email ain’t baby pictures, people — let it go. Via the always awesome ShelfLife.