Ever notice that it’s really easy to misinterpret someone’s intended tone of voice when you are reading an email from them? Your friend writes “Hey, haven’t seen you in a while, everything OK?” and you imagine it to be delivered in a miffed, snippy, guess-you-don’t-like-me-anymore tone when she actually meant to sound interested, concerned and friendly. Wouldn’t it be great to have inflection tags for email? Like this:
Spousal email* before inflection tags:
Hi honey, I’m going to be late today. How about you start dinner and I’ll grab some kind of dessert on the way home?
Dang it, you think, s/he’s weaseling out of making dinner again! But wait. Here’s the same email, after inflection tags are added:
<tone="happy" chirpy="+3">Hi honey, I’m going to be late today. How about you start dinner and I’ll grab some kind of dessert on the way home?</tone>
Ohh, you think. S/he’s in a good mood, just running a little late. Okay. Maybe s/he’ll bring home some chocolate!
Just think what a difference it could make.
*This email is entirely fictitious. Any resemblance to any email sent by any person or persons, living or dead (can the dead send email?), is entirely coincidental.