What’s a Serio? It’s an imaginary email currency that helps you prioritize the value of emails you send and receive. It is available from a company called Seriosity who provide a plug for Outlook that allocates you so many Serios which you apply to outbound emails. As the system learns about your contacts and they start using Serios as well you can establish costs for sending each other emails about certain topics. So, to prevent lots of trivial replies or CC’s you simply hike up the cost for people to send you email on that topic.
There’s a neat little video on the site that takes you through all the major aspects. The product is in beta so you can download it and try it out.
Personally, I’m a little sceptical because it really requires for your major contacts to opt in. I can see how it would work in a large corporate but on the general Internet, ummmmm, I kinda don’t think so because it seems to require extra effort and people aren’t into that are they? I also think that in some ways it really doesn’t change people’s bad email habits but it would certainly make them think more about sending emails if they only had a limited supply of Serio currency.
I applaud Serioisty for the idea and their development which has a very sound base. If every email you sent cost you 1 cent (like a postage stamp) then we’d certainly have a lot less spam for starters and perhaps less frivolous emails as well. Such an idea has always fallen down because it is firstly too hard to get all the software people to agree on how to implement it and second who collects all the money you pay for sending emails? Great concept, tough implementation.