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Like father like son

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Now wasn't it George H.W. Bush that had the infamous scene in the super market where he looked totally befuddled by the bar code scanner at the check out?  So today I see this from Reuters about how George W. doesn't use email.  At one point he is quoted as saying, "But when it comes to e-mail, Bush said he avoids it because 'everything is investigated in Washington' and as a result 'we're losing a lot of history, not just with me, but with other presidents as well.'"  Huh?? 

Does the Freedom of Information Act only apply to email?  No -- it applies to a whole range of communication.  So what makes him think about email differently than other forms of communication? 

This raises a question for me: 

  • Is email, because it is less understood by laypersons than writing on paper, seen as a significantly different form of documentation rather than just a maturation of writing media?  What happens when more communication technologies hit the market -- like blogs, vlogs, and wiki's?  How long will it take for these to me trusted forms of communication by people like the President?  



  • Someone sent me a note saying I too was less than clear -- so let me try again. Bush was arguing against email in the context of the Freedom of Information Act -- wants more privacy than he feels he is getting or deserves. The problem is that from a Freedom of Information Act perspective written correspondence is written correspondence. The medium doesn't matter. If something is written in email why is that any different than something written on paper?

  • I think it's only going to take on generation. My 8 year old sees no difference really in writing in crayon, in email, typing, or otherwise. Of course there are a lot of people as old as President Bush using email, but President Bush is *unique* in ways that can't be described in the blog.

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