It can be argued that businesses and other organizations run on the strength of their email hosting systems. While the technology may considered downright archaic by some in this age of cloud storage and smartphones, when it comes to getting out information to a large group of people e-mail still remains more or less unsurpassed. However, what remains e-mail's strongest ability can also sometimes become its greatest weakness.
Take, for example, a recent event at New York University dubbed "replyallcalypse," which started when one student at the school accidentally hit the "reply all" button to a standard university e-mail sent to just under 40,000 people. When this occurs in a business the matter more or less ends there, but since this occurred in a university the situation quickly got out of hand.
Sophomore Max Wiseltier accidentally set off "replyallcalypse" when attempting to forward the e-mail about tax forms to his mother with the question "Do you want me to do this?" Instead of hitting "forward," though, he clicked "reply all." Realising his mistake almost immediately, he followed up with a "sorry" e-mail.
This innocent mistake then led to a veritable flood of students sending out mass e-mails to the 40,000 recipients of the original e-mail. While most were simple responses along the lines of "I think you've sent this to the wrong person," a number of jokers saw this as an opportunity to send out mass jokes and rants, while one student even sent out a picture of actor Nicholas Cage.
David Vogelsang, head of the NYU Student Research Center, took responsibility for the error and released a statement explaining what went wrong: "I was assisting the Bursar with an e-mail message and in populating one of the SRC Listserves did not realize the list I was using was one that allowed for responses and thus the 'replyallcalypse.'" He added that he takes full responsibility for the "blunder" and offered his sincerest apologies.
In other email hosting news, TMCnet reported that the Suddenlink platform went down on Friday morning, leaving customers in the 13 states it serves unable to receive their mail using either Suddenlink's own Web-based hosting system or third-party e-mail clients. Fortunately, service was restored the next day.
In addition, provider of Microsoft (News - Alert) Exchange-based email hosting solutions Intermedia recently released Outlook 2013 as an optional add on feature to be used with the company's Exchange 2007, Exchange 2010 and Hosted Exchange 2013 offerings.
Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO Miami 2013, Jan 29- Feb. 1 in Miami, Florida. Stay in touch with everything happening at ITEXPO (News - Alert). Follow us on Twitter.
Edited by Jamie Epstein