Who could hate a friendly little punctuation mark? Steve Macone could, and does, even though he's addicted to using it. "I've come to hate" exclamation points in texts and emails, he writes at Salon. "'See you at 1:00 for the meeting,' I type, and then hesitate: If I don’t add an exclamation point it sounds like I plan to kill the person when I get there." Sure exclamation points are friendly, but they replace "the effort of actually being friendly." Clicking Shift-1 is just too easy.
Marcone also hates how exclamation points reveal our insecure neediness right away. "That’s why we communicate to begin with, right?" Macone asks. "We need that invoice, please, need to follow up and confirm that meeting for 1 o’clock, need to check with a friend that they’re going to the awesome party!" Macone's solution: type the dreaded dot-line combo, pause, and delete it. "And just hope that when I do get to the meeting they’ll be pleasantly surprised that I don’t plan to kill them, that they just might like me, period." Click for the full article.