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This is what happens when one confuses "random" with "profound."

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Good News / Bad News Flag

Quick summary for emails
  (+12, -1)(+12, -1)
(+12, -1)
  [vote for,
against]

Many email programs have "Urgent" or "Low importance" flags that you can mark your message with before sending. But often what the reader *really* wants to know is whether it's good or bad news.

If a manager has 100 emails in his/her inbox, his/her primary concern might be "what problems are occurring today"? For that, he can jump right away to the "Bad News" flagged e-mails (those depicted with a :( face next to the subject line). Then s/he might see:

:( System Job #161A - failed to run, please call me
:( Joe, I forgot my password, what is it again,
:( Sorry, I won't be able to make lunch next Tuesday, let's reschedule for next week

Etc. Then the manager can instantly identify the day's problems.

Often, just the combination of smiley plus subject line will make the email's contents obvious. This saves the manager's time opening & reading every email the instant s/he receives it. For example,

:) Reconciliation of assets to liabilities
you know the email will say that blah blah blah the employee checked the reports and they matched.

:) My exam
Now you know your friend passed his exam, instantly, before even opening the message. Conversely, :( my exam
you can prepare yourself for the worst before being hit with it.

Not every email needs a :) / :( flag; it's optional to use one. Just as the "urgent" flag is optional.

Thank you.

phundug, Jul 07 2005

Another email summary idea AutoSummarizeReply
[theircompetitor, Jul 07 2005]

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       I think the wider point that emails should have a wide range of semantic flags which the sender can set is a good one. Once you know an email is non-urgent, bad news, requiring a response, without resource implications, not a circular, and short enough to read in under 30s then you'll know whether to open it or not.
hippo, Jul 07 2005
  

       :( Security will be along to escort you out of your office. Please leave your badge at the front desk.
bristolz, Jul 07 2005
  

       Would there be a good news / bad news flag? Could you specify which you would like to read first? :):
Worldgineer, Jul 07 2005
  

       I like this alot... ...not sure if that is good news or bad news.
ato_de, Jul 07 2005
  

       :) london 2012 / :( london 2005
not_only_but_also, Jul 07 2005
  

       Yes but since that decision is made on the other end of the line people would just start flaging urgent all the time.
10clock, Jul 08 2005
  

       :( Email system down
Detly, Jul 08 2005
  

       :) You didn't get the promotion.   

         

       I did.
angel, Jul 08 2005
  
      
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