I am conTENT. My work is CONtent.

Archive for July, 2008

Email Disclaimers Can Make Signatures Silly

Posted by contentgrrl on July 10, 2008

Many emails in the business-to-business world discuss how to solve a business problem, information that could be dangerous in the hands of a competitor. So I’ve been a stickler for the confidential & proprietary disclaimer:

This electronic transmission contains information that may be confidential or proprietary. If you are not the intended recipient, be aware that any disclosure, copying, distribution or use of the contents hereof is strictly prohibited. If you have received this transmission in error, please notify [email address here].

The “email address here” for my employer is an email alias for an admin assistant. When the former admin left, we had trouble defining exactly what should happen if the new admin got any notifications to that address. It looks like we never actually got any such notifications. I suppose we could send it to our legal advisors, but hopefully they wouldn’t find a way to punish the whistleblower.

In my employer’s exercise of rebranding, we’re instituting a common look for our email signatures. I was looking for a disclaimer much shorter and simpler (better not be too sweet about it).

What I found was this:

The Goldmark article discusses why they’re stupid, gives a list of the most stupid disclaimers, along with some silly ones. My favorite:

Your eyes are weary from staring at the CRT. You feel sleepy. Notice how restful it is to watch the cursor blink. Close your eyes. The opinions stated above are yours. You cannot imagine why you ever felt otherwise.

The Goldmark article also makes a suggestion…

Email from people at does not usually represent official policy of Your-Organization-Here. See URL-Of-Policy-Document-Here for details.

… with the caveat that perhaps it’s so weak it’s not worth having at all, but at least it doesn’t make silly unsupportable claims.

I like the reference to the policy online, because the legal counselors can say whatever they need, and it’s just the one page.

Let’s try something even simpler:

This message may be subject to nondisclosure, copyright and privacy policy (URL here).

What do you think? Better than having a signature that’s so long it overwhelms a simple response of “OK.”

Posted in marketing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

SuperShadow Star Wars Trilogy Disjointed, Disappointing

Posted by contentgrrl on July 2, 2008

When researching Leia: the heroine’s journey through hairstyles, I found a SuperShadow plot synopsis of what is supposed to be George Lucas’ upcoming trilogy. I am disappointed, for several reasons:

  • Leia’s son is named Anakin, and Luke’s son is named Ben. Namesakes smack of laziness, and make for confusion among fans (Did you mean Anakin Skywalker or Anakin Solo? Ben Kenobi or Ben Skywalker?). I’d rather see a creative wordplay honoring both Padme/Amidala and Anakin (Padkin? Dalkin?)
  • There’s no character growth. The focus is on the aging Luke, Leia, Han, and so forth. As much as I want to see Leia grow into the matriarch she’s born to be, and a Jedi in her own right, Lucas makes her and Han minor characters.  Sure, their children have to step up and do them proud, but there’s no real drama here, or tension.
  • There’s no romantic tension. Oooh, one scene tossed in with Ben and his girlfriend on the Kessel Run, but it doesn’t add to the story arc.
  • No interesting new world being explored, except maybe an old Sith stronghold.
  • The thought that Jedi would even think about using a weapon that unleashes a black hole on a system turns my stomach.
  • More clones, but not all that sinister. More Sith, but I found myself almost rooting for them as underdogs.
  • Out of the edges of space comes a new enemy pouncing to conquer the Republic during a post-rebellion turmoil. I wonder that it’s not that dastardly Trade Federation again.

Next, I’ll look at what I think are better ideas.

Posted in culture, heroes, heroines | Tagged: , , , , | 4 Comments »