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Does a Lame E-Mail Address Really Matter? 1049 1049

theodp writes "Over at the Chicago Tribune, freelance writer Nancy Anderson makes an embarrassing confession. It's 2010 and she still has an AOL e-mail address. 'You've got to get rid of that AOL address,' her publicist sister told her five years ago. 'It's bad for your image.' Image, shmimage, Anderson thought. 'If I do good work,' she asks, 'does my e-mail address really matter?' Good question. Would an AOL e-mail address — or another 'toxic' e-mail address — influence your decision to hire someone?"
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Does a Lame E-Mail Address Really Matter?

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  • yes (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 11, 2010 @09:09AM (#30721838)


  • Re:yes (Score:4, Informative)

    by selven (1556643) on Monday January 11, 2010 @09:28AM (#30722084)

    If you're trying to apply for a new job, is the employer going to care about what company you were associated with beyond trying to figure out why you left/got fired?

  • Re:yes (Score:4, Informative)

    by tepples (727027) <> on Monday January 11, 2010 @09:32AM (#30722126) Homepage Journal

    Why would you advertise AOL or hotmail, when you have a chance to plug your own site?

    Not everybody has 1. the cash for hosting for a site and 2. the time to maintain one.

  • by ZosX (517789) <zosxavius @ g> on Monday January 11, 2010 @09:35AM (#30722138) Homepage

    Pretty easy. Its out of beta (FINALLY!)

  • Re:I notice it. (Score:3, Informative)

    by Algan (20532) on Monday January 11, 2010 @09:51AM (#30722318)

    Because gmail supports imap and pop3, while yahoo doesn't. Just my $0.02.

  • Re:yes (Score:4, Informative)

    by Rockoon (1252108) on Monday January 11, 2010 @10:12AM (#30722580)
    Sometimes people look for new jobs while already employed, and some never stop looking.
  • by Skater (41976) on Monday January 11, 2010 @10:29AM (#30722828) Homepage Journal

    However, as a private person, I pay my internet subscription and as part of that I get up to five (familial) email addresses without hassle. Why should I invest in a private domain name ?

    One huge advantage is that you can keep the same email addresses even if you change ISPs.

  • by xaxa (988988) on Monday January 11, 2010 @10:33AM (#30722862)

    My real-name domain costs much less than that.

    The .uk domain is £3.50 (ish) per year.
    Many registrars provide free DNS, mine doesn't so I use
    Google Apps for personal use is free.

    Total cost: £3.50/year -- roughly the cost of a drink in a nightclub (round here).

  • by KronicD (568558) on Monday January 11, 2010 @10:35AM (#30722896) Homepage

    Because it allows you to change ISP without issue. I've had my email addresses professional & personal for over a decade. I would hate to have to have to ask everyone to update their contacts whenever I swaped ISPs.

    You can do this for less than the $40, I get mine from [] and host the email with google apps, but they include free email forwarding if you'd rather just keep receiving mail at your ISP address.

    The advantage is portability. I know people who are still paying ~$10 a month to some ISP to keep forwarding their email. You don't want to be in that situation.

  • Re:yes (Score:5, Informative)

    by WinterSolstice (223271) on Monday January 11, 2010 @11:10AM (#30723300)

    As another old Cserve person (11465,1123 - note the comma - later a dot when email became popular) I would say that any compuserve people who stayed post AOL buyout deserve to be singled out ;)

    Seriously though - yes. Embarrassing email addresses should not be used professionally. This isn't so much hotmail or msn or aol (provider level, like the article is about) as it is the actual address.

    I will *not* consider 'partyd00d420@whatever' for a job. Sorry, just not going to happen.

  • by SirGarlon (845873) on Monday January 11, 2010 @11:17AM (#30723386)

    Even if you happen to hang on to your AOL e-mail address because you don't want to change it, there's no need to put it on your resume.

    The professional societies to which I belong -- IEEE and ACM -- as well as my alma mater, offer e-mail forwarding addresses. So I can set up a respectable-looking e-mail address, such as, and have that redirect to the address I actually use. Who cares if that address is My business associates ain't gonna know.

    I would be quite surprised if societies for other professions, such as law or medicine or even journalism, don't have similar services.

  • by peter303 (12292) on Monday January 11, 2010 @11:46AM (#30723746)
    I could use my or alumni forwarding addresses in a job search. But I have been pretty lucky and haven't needed to cold-call a job app in a couple of decades.
  • Re:yes (Score:2, Informative)

    by jthill (303417) on Monday January 11, 2010 @01:45PM (#30725414)

    Why is gmail better than hotmail or aol?

    1. Your email is yours, not theirs: they don't insert ads.
    2. Your email is yours, not theirs: full ssl'd POP3/IMAP.
    3. Their spam filters are second to none.
  • by Enleth (947766) <> on Monday January 11, 2010 @01:50PM (#30725500) Homepage

    Buy your own domain, attach a Google Apps account to it. The best of both worlds, truly.

  • Re:yes (Score:4, Informative)

    by AxemRed (755470) on Monday January 11, 2010 @03:24PM (#30726790)
    AOL offers free email, just like Hotmail, Yahoo, and others. You don't have to pay money for it.

    Also, many people still using an @aol email may have originally had AOL back in the 90's and decided to keep their email address even after they dropped AOL as their ISP. I left AOL in 1999, and they let me keep my email address and AIM screen name... I still have them in fact, although I don't use them much. If I had used my @aol email address extensively though, I would probably still be using it. Why go through the trouble of changing your email address when you already have something that works and is free?
  • Re:yes (Score:3, Informative)

    by Profane MuthaFucka (574406) <> on Monday January 11, 2010 @03:24PM (#30726800) Homepage Journal

    Interesting that I am modded offtopic. Apparently people remember the "me too" posts, but they don't remember WHAT they were "me too-ing" all about.

    For the newbies, the original posts were offers to email Alyssa Milano nude photos to anyone who posted on the thread.

    Alyssa Milano was an actress in the late 20th century who was apparently very beautiful, and very young. If she did have any nude photos, they would have been highly sought after by many computer programmers.

    The cascades of "me too" comments in response to these nude photo offers became legends, and after AOL connected to Usenet, became sources of sorrow.

  • Re:It is telling... (Score:3, Informative)

    by clone53421 (1310749) on Monday January 11, 2010 @08:10PM (#30731236) Journal


    Back when Gmail was first getting started, it offered ... what, a gigabyte of storage? or was it two gigabytes? Hotmail, on the other hand, was offering a measly two megabytes. It also allowed much larger attachments. Reason enough to switch right there. Don’t think I’m stuck in the past, though. I can keep going.

    The spam filtering alone is reason enough to switch. Hotmail’s spam filtering is pitiful. Gmail’s is nearly bulletproof.

    Nice, non-animated, non-blinking, non-colourful, generally non-irritating advertisements... compared to Hotmail’s, which exhibit in every way the polar opposites of all those qualities. Sure, Gmail’s ads are targeted based on trigger words in the e-mail I’m reading, but even so it’s not like an actual person at Gmail is reading my messages.

    Gmail is fast. Fast load. Fast message opening. Fast search (from Google? who’da thunkit?). Fast just about everything. Since the whole application loads at the outset, all it has to fetch to open a message or display your inbox (or any other label) is just the data that it needs to load. All done by Ajax, all very fast. The only thing that takes any considerable amount of time is loading the whole thing to begin with, and even that is relatively quick if you consider all the time it saves in the long run. Vs. Hotmail, which loads an entire new entire page, complete with rich advertisements, virtually every time you click anything.

    Basically, everything that Hotmail does, Gmail does better. I honestly can’t find anything to criticize.

System restarting, wait...