[mailhist-discuss] Question about the early use of email

Linda Hess linda.hess at gmail.com
Mon Nov 17 09:44:50 PST 2014


Hello to the group!

I spoke to our moderator back in September, and he gave the the go-ahead to
post this question even though it's not exactly what you all normally
discuss (at least, not from what I can see).

I was doing a search on the history of email from a private user perspective
(as opposed to the use of email by the military, academic, and other
early-adaptor communities).

What I hope you can tell me is as follows:

1. Who was most likely to have access to email in 1990? I didn't have
access until 1994, and that was through my employer, so I really don't know
the answer to this question.

2. What were the most likely ways that strangers made personal connections?
I met a person who became a close friend on an email discussion group (via
Listserve) in 1995. FWIW, that list still is active to this day!

3. If people lost touch with each other, how easy was it to find a person
again in the pre-Google days? Could a person pretty much disappear if they
chose not to answer email?

These questions are for a novel I'm writing. As my early Internet
experience is limited, I'd truly appreciate whatever insight anyone might
wish to offer. I you want to reply off-list, that's fine.

Many thanks and best regards,
Linda Hess
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