WMU News

Holiday e-cards find growing appeal and acceptance

Dec. 4, 2001

KALAMAZOO -- You're tempted.

The holiday card tradition has never been your scene, and the thought of hand writing dozens of personalized greetings makes you cringe. You're usually late anyhow, if you get cards out at all. More and more of your colleagues, friends and family are using e-mail. Can you get away with an e-card this holiday season? Maybe, but you ought to carefully consider your audience, says Dr. Joseph Kayany, an associate professor of communication at WMU.

"A lot of people say 'it's the thought that counts,' and with an e-card you definitely get credit for the thought," he notes. "But when you compare it to the effort required of someone else to go to the store, choose a card or gift, hand write a note and send it off with a holiday stamp, the e-card certainly doesn't live up in the effort department."

People are becoming more technologically savvy each year, Kayany says, and those who are online are tightening their circle of close acquaintances to include only those who use e-mail as well. He counts himself among the growing number of techno-savvy people who no longer like snail-mail correspondence. But the e-revolution hasn't reached everyone, and electronic greetings may not be appropriate for everyone.

"Last year, I sent an e-card to my colleagues in the Department of Communication," Kayany recalls. "It went over pretty well -- people were appreciative and no one seemed to think it was impersonal or inappropriate. But I certainly wouldn't send one to my mother. I wouldn't dare."

Media contact: Marie Lee, 269 387-8400, marie.lee@wmich.edu

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