We love Google. Its web email service, Gmail, has added a brilliant “custom time” stamp feature allowing you to set any date you want on an email — so if you forget to mail a business proposal or send Mom a birthday card, simply email a retroactively dated message, and it will pop up in the recipient’s inbox in the proper chronological order.
We can’t fathom why no one has thought of this before. Gmail offers an added bonus, you can have the email pop up marked as “read” or “unread,” so if your contact claims you never sent the message, you simply say, “Check your inbox — it came in last Tuesday,” and it will appear that it did and has already been opened.
No word yet if falsifying data creates legal issues, and we hear privacy advocates in the European Union are already protesting. Pity. Internet sociologist Lirpa Loof notes that shifting time stamps could lead to marketing fraud, but might help personal relationships strained by the cold typing of social media. “Now, even if you forget to tell someone you love them on your anniversary,” Loof said, “you can send a backdated poem and have it arrive on time. It’s still a lie, but one oh so sweet.”