Take a look at this fascinating (and cringeworthy) video showing how to send email in 1984


In 2016, it is hard to imagine life without email. In fact for many, it is the most common tool we use to communicate with one another online, be it to friends and family or in the workplace.

However, it wasn’t all that long ago that sending an email was a long, complicated and laborious process, as the hilarious video you’re about to watch shows.

The video dates back to 1984 and is from a Thames TV show in the UK called Database.

The clip shows a bespectacled 1980s nerd connecting his modem to a British Telecom home telephone line, before physically dialling up a connection using an old rotary telephone, which in 2016 is quite extraordinary to see.

He then turns on his massive modem and once the connection has been established he uses what looks like an old BBC computer to log onto the something called Micronet 800, which provided news updates, very basic online games and other information such as weather forecasts.

It also allowed users to send email, which the man and woman in the video do their best to explain how this is done and give some examples of what email could be used for, such as contacting your doctor to order a repeat prescription, they say!

Watching the video, it’s both fascinating and funny, seeing the effort needed to send a very basic email. It is also pretty amazing to think that 30 years later we can send an email probably in less than 10 seconds from our smartphone or tablet from almost anywhere in the world.

Perhaps you remember Micronet 800?

Or can you remember the first time you sent an email? Was it as early as 1984 or maybe even earlier given that email, in one form or another has actually been around since the early 1970s.

Let us know in the comments section below.


1 Comment

  1. So great to see this! I had to laugh though, when prompted for his personal password to login, it appears he keyed in 1-2-3! LOL.