I guess it was back in 1994 that I first went online. At first, my access was via a teacher network and, therefore, limited. When I did get in, it was using a browser (and I use that word lightly) that did not support graphics. I had my first email account with that teacher network. Heady stuff: but access through them was neither reliable nor comprehensive, so I soon found my first, true Internet Service Provider and began browsing, first with Netscape and then with an early version of Internet Explorer.
In those days, my ISP limited me to one email account. Web-based accounts weren't terribly available then, but I didn't really need more than one account until other family members decided that they wanted to get online too. It was a problem, and I'm not too sure how we solved it. Maybe I really had two email accounts? Eventually, I switched providers for an outfit who would provide five accounts, and that served did us quite well, and if that wasn't enough, I later got my own web site, which provided me with up to 50 accounts.
Later on I tried web-based email accounts with hotmail and yahoo and another outfit. I could never quite commit to web-based email, however, until Google's gmail came along. They supply tons of space, so that you never have to toss a letter if you don't want to, and they are very reliable.
Gmail is so good at trapping that dreaded s**m that I almost welcome it. I think of the money and time that the miscreants are spending on me to absolutely no avail. It goes into a separate folder, which I can clean out manually or let Google empty after thirty days. I prefer to do it myself on a daily basis, but I after checking for months and finding no mistakes, I seldom bother to do more than cast a most fleeting glance at the s**mbox before I tell gmail to delete it all. On rare occasions, I confess that the odd, unsolicited email makes it past their filters into my Inbox, but it occurs very infrequently.
It's not just gmail that works well now; those other alternatives that I mentioned are great too. One could consider them to be disposable accounts. If you didn't like the mail you were getting (if the junk were to get through), you could easily delete the account and get a different one.
You see, I am wishing that y'all would all file an email address with Blogger. That would make it easy to reply to comments. Sometimes, I get questions, and I begin to write a reply, only to find out that no email address has been provided. The email-ripping-people can't easily get your addresses from Blogger because they seem to be protected from bots in some way. So, the address that I publicize on Blogger actually gets much less s**m than the address that I have tried to keep more secret. Go figure.
However, human nature being what it is, most people will keep hiding their email address in their attempts to drive me completely crazy. I really don't have far to go, y'know? :) So, I think that I'll actually begin to do what some of you already do; if a comment requires follow-up (ie. a question) I shall try to answer it in my comment section if an email address isn't provided. I think it rather cumbersome and almost the only thing that I really don't like about Blogger, but that seems to be what people prefer, so who am little ole me to buck the trend any longer?
With that in mind, I have made some follow-up comments to each of my previous four posts. It's not always necessary to comment back (thank goodness) but for now I'll give it a try when it seems to be appropriate. Meanwhile, if you're interested in gmail, you need an invitation to get a free account. It so happens that if you write to me, I can provide you with one, and you'll be onto a better form of email in no time flat. My email address is not hard to find; just look at the top of the sidebar. Will ya?