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Email - on its last legs or growing up?

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Management in some organizations thinks that if you aren't at your desk, you aren't working. So, IM is available, and people take advantage of it. Plus, if you work in cubicle land, it's probably preferable to IM than pick up the phone and potentially bother everyone in the area.

I agree that face-to-face is best when possible, but I understand why IM is preferred in some situations.