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Glory, glory email

Dear friend,

“Just show me something that’s not just a glorified email and I’ll buy it”

That’s what one old market player told me the other day when I asked him what he thought about all the various electronic placing solutions now available to practitioners of the London market and beyond.

I remember way back when faxes came in — they were so cool. It was like magic — when our office got its first one we stood around open-mouthed like primitive tribesman gawking at an anthropologist’s camera.

What was this ju-ju, this metal squawk box that ate paper and send it around the world? What kind of sorcery was this?

Surely once everyone got one of these the days of the broker and perhaps, the London Market itself were well and truly numbered?

The telex machine grew dusty and unloved. A year later it was tossed in a skip.

Then we got connected to Limnet – then we got Windows networked computing and eventually email. The London Market still exists.

Now it’s the fax machine that is hovering close to oblivion.

The fax machine was really just glorified letter writing, but it was a darn sight better than writing a letter, finding an envelope, addressing it correctly and then guessing how the franking machine worked, eventually posting it and finally hoping that a fragile piece of paper would find its way to the other side of the world without getting lost or stolen.

So my point is — so what if all these new placing systems really are just glorified email?

Glorying email is good – let’s get on and do it — now.

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