Thursday, October 16, 2008

"Please consider the environment...

before printing this email."

Have you seen this sort of tag line to email signatures lately? I've been keeping my opinions to myself, but I responded back to someone about it today from another company. Note: he asked for my opinion; I didn't just start ranting at him.

"I’m not sure what I think about admonitions about not printing stuff. Our [company-mandated] signature line is supposed to include that too, but either 1) I am sending email to people who are responsible enough to consider before they print it; 2) they need to print it as a paper trail; 3) they are dopes who print everything; or 4) some combination of the previous.

"I agree that there is a lot of waste in general, but I don’t know to measure the cost effectiveness of some of these efforts. Example: we are supposed to use washable glasses and coffee cups and plates at the office now. They want to pay me for the time I’d have to take to wash these? And if I wanted to wash dishes, I’d stay home and do that, but I can’t because I have to drive 50 miles a day/5 days a week to be here (they are not “comfortable” with telecommuting). How about if we let me work at home one day and let me use a disposable cup? That must work out better in terms of petroleum usage."

I never argue with people who say, "Have a blessed day," even though I'd prefer that they keep their deistic statements to themselves. I get that they are trying to help me along with good thoughts. But this environmental reminder is like me reminding my kids for the 1,000th time to stop running the water so much. I remind them because as their parent I am responsible for drilling some responsibility and awareness into their little heads.

Thanks, but I really don't think I need another grown-up telling me to be aware of the environment. I think it makes the sender look sanctimonious AND impersonal, instead of personal and caring, as I think is intended.

Just my electronic $.02. I will restrain myself from printing this post for future reference. LOL.