So I’m a little curious to hear why people keep all the email they do, how frequently they actually search or otherwise access archived email, and how they decide what to keep. For those that may have business reasons for keeping email, do they ever have concerns that they’ve kept too much (i.e., stuff that would turn up during a “discovery” process in litigation?)
As far as personal email goes, of course I delete spam, other than that though most stuff get kept. My philosophy has evolved to agree with Jim Gray's (http://research.microsoft.com/~Gray/
) - never delete anything:http://www.research....rprise%20Exabyte.ppt
Obviously I don't follow this literally. Things which are completely of no consequence get deleted if I think about it or some folder or something gets cluttered enough that I decide to throw out such things.
For business use, this may not be the best policy (due to document retention policies, etc.). Actually I suppose there could be some legal ramifications, but I don't think anything I have or do will ever merit serious legal scrutiny (I hope I never have to test that statement!).
In the long term, I fear that much of this will be moot because entities (like the Government, Credit Bureaus, and Google) will actually have nearly all data archived in some fashion. This may sound like SciFi conspiracy theory, but I think that it will come be reality soon. As Jim Gray's slide #25 in the powerpoint I linked to says:
Soon everything can be recorded and indexed
The only problem will be how to find the data you want.