Electronic mail and conferencing serves as an equalizer, or a democratization of both personal and professional communication, and a certain degree of anonymity and a crossing or ignoring of the more traditional channels of communication is allowed. Participants who are less outspoken in a traditional conversation or meeting may feel more comfortable about exploring ideas or speaking out on issues when using e mail, and this may also encourage the de emphasis of professional position or status as well. E Mail shares the temporary, convenient, and volatile attributes of telephone or spoken conversation. At the same time, though, it is as permanent a medium as the written word. A unique feature of e mail is the ease of redistribution of the message in its original or an altered form, and ownership of the message or its content is fuzzy at best.
E-mail creates a number of problems as well. For one thing, there is no one e-mail system in use, and instead there are dozens of e-mail systems, each speaking its own language, and in many ways isolated from all the others. The industry is moving toward adopting a universal language, though, in the form of the X.400 and X.500 standards. The links that do exist between systems are often clumsy, and no single system is willing or even able to implement links to all the others. At the present time, if you want to send a message from the e mail system you use to someone on another system, it often can be done, though not always easily. The options that are available to you depend on which systems you use and which systems you are trying to
contact, and there is also a third party company, DAsnet, that acts as a forwarding service, taking your messages and delivering them to almost any commercial e mail system or private network. There is ample opp