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Hi, I’m Brad Feld, a managing director at the Foundry Group who lives in Boulder, Colorado. I invest in software and Internet companies around the US, run marathons and read a lot.

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Facebook Email Sucks

Comments (8)

I’m an email junkie going back as far as I can remember.  It’s by far my favorite way to communicate. 

I’m utterly and completely baffled that Facebook email (ok – “Inbox”) is so poor.  No forward a message.   Can’t add people to a thread.  No way to sort or manage the messages.  And now Facebook apps are customizing the email form with message bling.  Gack.

Now, before you tell me “that’s not how Facebook works” I know that.  However, more and more of my new Facebook friends (those of the between 30 and 45 age group, mostly tech nerds but some others) seem to be enjoying sending me emails on Facebook.  I’ve started cutting the page with the Microsoft Snipping Tool and forwarding it back them via email to continue the conversation.

At least my friend Jared Polis and the gang at Confluence Commons are trying to build a solution to this.  Hurry up guys – this is silly.

  • http://learnfirefox.cybernetnews.com Chris Rossini

    I actually think that Facebook has a big opportunity here.

    I would much rather use Facebook e-mail when communicating with friends.

    They do need to improve it though.

  • http://www.fuser.com Emily

    Thanks for the mention! We’re getting excited here at Confluence Commons (now Fuser) for our open beta which is coming soon. We’re really excited about the functionality we’ve been building into Fuser and are looking forward to hearing lots of feedback. Thanks again! Emily

  • Michael Stich

    I think every app that facebook makes is intentionally dumbed down for the sake of mass appeal – Market View, their new survey tool, etc.. are also devoid of key features.

    Is this a capacity issue to ensure performance during widespread distribution, or a user-design goal to drive trial of these applications?

  • James Mitchell

    Brad — There is a larger issue here: Using the e-mail contained in self contained systems, whether social, dating or business networking sites or other systems. In every system I have used, the functionality/features offered are inferior to Outlook, so all the time, I copy the email and move it to regular e-mail.

    James Mitchell

  • http://www.intuitive.com/blog/ Dave Taylor

    You’re exactly right. It’s only decent when compared to the truly abysmal email interface on MySpace. That one is so awful that I have a big banner on my MySpace profile that warns people that I summarily delete all email in MySpace rather than even go near that area on the site. Blech. Y’d think with all the nice webmail interfaces in the open source world that it wouldn’t be so darn hard to add that as a *valuable* capability, but even the email in LinkedIn, ostensibly where it’s more crucial than even Facebook… but …

  • http://www.susanitsa.wordpress.com Susan Scrupski

    Hi Brad. It’s interesting. I find in my FB network, folks use the FB inbox as a sort of “backchannel” for the very same reasons that make you unhappy. I’ve even had some fun with this by telling my friends, “what happens in the FB, stays in the FB or WHITFSITF.” Of course, you could cut and paste these messages, but it’s a more familiar, casual way of conversing.

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