I was invited to Hey this week. Such a wonderful initiative, I was really excited to test it out, especially in the context of this work on mediums. After all, email is a very big part of communication in 2020. I spent close to 120 hours this year alone, typing emails (117 hrs, based on Rescue Time).

The design is nice and rich, I am sure there plenty of UX and design folks analyzing that side of things. I want to focus on a particular, potentially esoteric point. 

As far as I understand, Hey can only receive emails forward to it from another server. So in the context of this study of mediation, it is what we might call a ‘proxy medium’. It creates a layer of mediation, which in this case is more friendly to use, but an additional one nonetheless.

If for example, it would have completely replaced Gmail, it would have removed a layer of mediation, and could have moved closer to being a ‘meta medium’


A proxy medium makes communication less direct, could cause for miscommunication, and limit the ways we can show up. This will almost certainly be a result of over technologizing. In other words, ‘looking for a nail’ because you have a 'hammer'.

A meta medium will make communication easier, using creativity, new metaphors and linguistic puns.

Thank you for reading. Feel free to get in touch with your opinions, and thoughts.

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