Information overload? Cut back on your email.

One of the cool perks of speaking at conferences can be that you get to listen to others that present before or after you do. Such was my good fortune last week when I was able to meet Corbin Ball, and he spoke on Power Emailing; how to get the email monster under better control.

Corbin shared some statistics that are astounding:

  • 6 trillion emails were sent in North America alone in 2004
  • That was more than 400 times the mail delivered by the U.S. Postal Service
  • That figure is expected to triple by 2006

Corbin got this bit of trivia from the Berkeley School of Information Management in October of 2004 (so imagine today’s update):

Email generates about 400,000 terabytes [or 400 exabytes] of new information each year worldwide.

If that’s meaningless to you (as it was to me), Corbin explained that is equal to what would be stored in 20,000 Library of Congresses.

And consider this: The vast majority of people in the world still don’t use email at all.

By the way, Corbin is a terrific speaker. You can learn more about him at his website, and sign up for his free TechTalk newsletter.