The Renaissance of E-Mail Newsletters

Just as the weekend rolls around and I start clearing out my inbox from the stuff that has accumulated of the week, I find myself enjoying a particular kind of mails: Curated newsletters.

Over the past couple of months I subscribed to a growing number of newsletters. Newsletters which mostly feature a digest of what has happened in technology this week, allowing me to be aware of what’s going on in the world of (web-related) technology.

It’s a funny prank of history that email became one of my sources of information again. As that’s also how it all started for me. When I started getting into development I signed up for e-mail lists, although mostly to observe whats going on, I can’t recall actively participating in discussions. Later RSS rolled around where I would find myself in a list of well over 100 individual subscriptions and especially falling for blogposts including lists like “21 awesome items of something (which you will never need)”. With the dead of Google Reader, RSS died for me as well. At that time I picked up on all the various social media channels as a substitute: subscribing to more Twitter accounts than anyone could seriously follow. All for the main premise of knowing what’s “important”. A few years ago I started clicking through Hacker News and skimming through Reddit and Medium on a regular basis. The godfathers of timesinks.

I still fall for these way to often, but I try to avoid them. The current cure for my Fear-Of-Missing-Out comes from e-mails on a relatively fixed schedule. They all feature a similar structure: A categorized list with a small number of links and short explanation or quote. This also allows me to often just skim the mails completely and still satisfies my inner completionist.

So here some of my current favourites: