Can you prove they got the email you sent?

By
Real Estate Appraiser with G L Myers Real Estate Services

One of the most frustrating experiences of the electronic age is sending an email, waiting for a reply and later discovering they never got the email. Such mishaps can cost you business, in other words, money. Likewise, it can cost you money when you use email for notification. You send it, call and confirm they got it, discuss the content of the message; and now they claim it never happened or they claim the message was different from what you claim. Electronic communication is easily altered by those technically inclined. You can use paper to avoid the issue, but it is much slower and more cumbersome.

I suggest a good alternative for emails with monetary implications is registered email. A company called RPost has a system to verify an email was received, the time it was received and the content of the message. Just as with regular mail and registered mail with the USPS, it is not something to use on every email, but for truly important emails it provides legalproof of delivery and content. It doesn't take much imagination to see where this system can be of significant benefit to those of us in the real estate industry.

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Comments 27 New Comment

Anonymous #24
Anonymous
Anonymous
Greg,
Just wanted to drop by and thank you for the comment on my post.  How are things going in Chapel Hill, one of my very favorite places in the world?
February 05, 2008 06:06 AM
Anonymous #25
Anonymous
Anonymous

Greg,

I read yesterday that the Universal Postal Union which is comprised of 189 member nations is considering doing what I had mentioned in my earlier postings, i.e. developing a universal electronic implementation of the various services now present in physical mail.  Likely this will take several years to adopt for all nations, but the more technologically advanced nations will show signs of this initiative earlier than the others. 

What amazes me is that things I had been doing nearly 20 years ago are now being thought of as "innovative."  I include things like delivering an electronic version of a letter to a foreign country, having it printed after transmission, and then delivered as conventional mail.  It saved money, and it gave the impression and sense of immediacy that only a physical letter can. 

Governments are slow adopters of technology.  The reasons are manifold, but a lot has to do with the unwillingness to adopt rooted in labor relations, fear of job losses, and fear of being found out as one who regulates but does not understand. 

February 05, 2008 10:04 AM
Rainer
11,857
Greg Myers
G L Myers Real Estate Services

Cynthia, things are going well in Chapel Hill. Major growth is about to occur in the Northern part of town now that guidelines are in place and the moratorium on development has expired. Time will tell if that is a good thing or a bad thing for the town, but it will be very good for the real estate business.

Robert, 20 to 30 years behind is typical for government when it comes to technology. As you say, there are many reasons for that, and labor (voter) fears are one of them. Regulating without understanding is not a big secret, but I do suppose there are those that like to pretend people don't know they are ignorant. I believe one of the main reasons behind the lack of taxes on the Internet is the inability to understand how to implement them in an enforceable manner.

For now we have systems like RPost that can confirm when something was received by a mail server, and what that something was. It's does not fill every need, but it does fill some needs. Someday a new mail protocol will come out which will handle confirmations all along the way and virtually eliminate spam. I'm sure it will happen, but I doubt government will have anything to do with it's invention or adoption.

February 05, 2008 12:26 PM
Ambassador
243,640
Jesse & Kathy Clifton
Fairbanks Alaska Real Estate Specialists, 907-328-9328
Jesse Clifton & Associates, REALTORS®
Interesting.  I've been using a secure encryption server for certain documents, but this is a whole new ball of wax.  It could prove very useful.  Thanks, Greg.
February 07, 2008 02:46 AM
Rainer
25
Michael Gubliano

You might be interested in a service called www.rewpost.com . They do not directly certify that an email has been received but you can proof that you have sent it. Its pretty straightforward.

August 15, 2009 11:55 AM
Rainer
11,857

Greg Myers

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