Why I don’t like e-cards.


Today a relative of mine sent me an e-Christmas card.    While I appreciate the thought (thank you — you know who you are, if you’re reading), e-cards seem like a cheap and lazy substitute the the real thing: an old fashioned, environmentally-unfriendly, paper or cardboard actual pretty card in an envelope with an actual written greeting inside.

When they were a new thing back in the ’90s, e-cards seemed uber-cool and cutting edge.   Now, not so much.   Today, e-cards are about as cutting edge as AOL or Netscape Navigator (remember those?)

When I receive an e-card (unless it’s from a disabled or ill person who can’t get to the store to buy a card or the post office to mail it), this is what it tells me about you:

It tells me you don’t think enough of me to take the time to purchase an actual card or take the time to mail it at the post office.   It also tells me you are either too lazy or cheap to make the effort to drive to the store or post office or spend the $2.00 or $3.00 (or a lot less than that, if they are from a box) to buy a card or the 49 cents to mail the card.  But thanks for at least remembering I exist.

Okay, e-cards do save trees.  So I guess they’re better for the environment and if you’re an tree-hugging environmentalist, an e-card makes sense.   That’s the only advantage I can see to them (besides not having to spend a dime or leave your house).

Cards aren’t a big deal, of course.  They aren’t the same as gifts.   We send cards to people we aren’t really that close to — casual friends, distant relatives, acquaintances, business associates, co-workers, or neighbors we don’t talk to that much.   But a card is still nice to get — they are pretty, tangible things that you can actually hold in your hand.   Many people use them as holiday decorations — strung from a garland or propped on a table with other cards, or collected in a pretty basket.   It’s always nice to look inside your mailbox and see a red or green envelope sitting there, and then slowly open it to pull out a pretty paper greeting card, perhaps even with a handwritten note from the sender.

E-cards don’t provide that experience.  They’re not much fun to “open,” you can’t display them, and you are also usually required to send a “thank you” response card to let the other person know you received it.    They are basically virtual cards — like virtual reality, they aren’t the real thing.  They are a fascimile of a real card.

When e-cards were new, I used to send them, because, you know, novelty (and well, laziness).  But within a year or two the newness wore off and I was back to snail-mailing old fashioned paper cards, because they are just so much nicer.   I wish people who sent e-cards would realize that most people would appreciate an actual paper card in an envelope to an e-card.   Maybe I’m just being overly petty, since really, it’s the thought that counts anyway.

Here’s a pie chart that proves most people prefer real cards to e-cards.




11 thoughts on “Why I don’t like e-cards.

  1. I send e-cards to the people I have the e-mail adress from and usually only my grandparents get a real card. This is because of disabilities. I usually get nice replies. I never thought about it like you do and it makes me kinda worried. Not everyone will realize why I send e-cards. On the other hand, I never get Christmas cards anyway, so at least I didn’t forget about it like the other person, I guess.

    Liked by 1 person

    • If you are disabled, e-cards make sense. Also if you’re an environmentalist. There are times they are appropriate, so I wouldn’t worry if people might be offended, especially if they know of your disabilities. It’s really the thought that counts anyway. It could be just a beef of mine.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Only a handful of people know where I live and since I seriously wish to keep it that way, most people get ecards. I send a real card to my sons and to my baby sister. that’s it.

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  3. It made me laugh that you thanked the person who sent you an e-card then proceeded to insult them with “what it tells you about them.”

    I’m not insulted or offended in the least though, I thought it was funny enough to truly laugh out loud. Maybe because you have the guts to actually say what you are thinking.

    I like to get cards in the mail but with all that’s happened with my family I don’t get them now. I was still getting one each year from my uncle but I’ve moved and did not let him know the new address. The card was forwarded last year, but probably won’t be this year. It’s always been here by now so looks like a no go.

    And I’ve alienated myself so much from so many people there’s no one to send them. Our old neighbors, who’s cats I take care of when they go away, have an actual thing for displaying their cards because they get so many.

    My narc sister sends out e-vites for her Christmas get together. She skipped me for a couple years but she’s back to sending them to me again, even though we haven’t spoken since sometimes in 2013. I don’t go. And in fact, I’m not even going to open it this year.

    Sorry for the ramble. I’ve been triggered. lol. I actually wrote about the e-vite on my blog…in two posts. the second one was trying to make sense of why a sister I have not spoken to in four years would send out an invitation to the Christmas party.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I always love it when my posts, even when they’re rants, make people laugh! I think the holiday season can be tiggering for many people, and it doesn’t take much to set it off! I love Christmas, but frankly I’m always glad when it’s over.

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