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Ben Halpern
Ben Halpern

Posted on

Tell me about your first email address

How old were you?

What platform was it?

What was the whole address if you're willing to share?

How/why did you get on email in the first place?

And anything else you'd like to add to your story....

Discussion (116)

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Ben Halpern Author

Inspired by this tweet....

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Pacharapol Withayasakpunt • Edited on

My @msn.com (my first) is still alive. Although I also link Microsoft account to GMail.

My current email is same as my first, but @gmail.com.

I also have @ymail.com, but it is practically dead.

I am 29. First email was probably 7-8.

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Waylon Walker

Does your own domain name count?

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Ben Halpern Author

I don't share the sentiment, but based on the above logic... Absolutely.

TBH I think there's an certain creepiness in general society associated with understanding and using tech. It's not a good thing, but I think it's a thing.

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Thomas H Jones II

I guess being over thirty means that having a non-Gmail primary email address doesn't automatically make me a serial killer. Hell, my email address is rolling up on being 30yo (seriously: I registered my domain back on September 27th,1995).

The only reason I'm able to have such an old email address and not have an inbox uselessly-full of spam is that my anti-spam setup is far more aggressive than Google's.

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Paula Gearon • Edited on

21

Unix. I don’t know what type.

s2302656@student.uq.edu.au

I had to write a letter to the head of the EE department to justify why having access to the internet would be important for me. Either I made a good argument, or else the letter didn’t actually matter 🙂 (pretty sure my argument wasn’t that great).

I could get onto the system via telnet from one of several machines around campus. The programs they told us about on the system included: email, ftp, gopher, lynx, xmodem (for those who could dial in), finger, irc.
I also got access to the modem bank, so I started saving for a modem. Meanwhile, I had a job at an office that had a modem. This let me use NCSA Mosaic, and also copy the files I’d downloaded from ftp servers onto a floppy.

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Benjamin Leopold

Wow, back when Mosaic was the lone wolf howling somewhere in the direction of the moon. Though really as a brilliant creation and proof-of-concept that led to more amazing innovations. The happy days. :)

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Paula Gearon

Mosaic was it for a little bit, but it wasn't long before Netscape Navigator and HotJava came out. OK, so no one actually used HotJava, but it's a fun footnote. 😊

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Thomas H Jones II

Innovations like Navigator's <BLINK> tag?

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Thomas H Jones II

Xmodem sucked. Zmodem (or Kermit, even) were the shiznit!

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Paula Gearon

zmodem came in soon after, and I always preferred it! Restarting failed transfers was amazing. I did try Kermit a couple of times (oh, and ymodem), but zmodem was the way to go.

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Thomas H Jones II

Yeah. Ymodem was just a very short way-station between the frustrations of xmodem and zmodem.

Given how flaky NSFnet was at the time, zmodem was a sanity-saver (and screen was so nice, given how slow transfers were: nothing like firing up screen, starting up a auto-retrying transfer, detach and log out ...come back a day or so later to the finished transfer).

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Jason C. McDonald • Edited on

kidmagineeditor on gmail. It's got a lot of history behind it...

When I was a kid, I actually ran a children's website called Kidmagine. It was something of an outlet for my own creativity, and I hoped to showcase that of other kids. What I did get to do was actually interview children's authors — thanks to my own site being hosted by my mother's writing community, the Dancing Word Writer's Network. My favorite part was also "publishing" my own imaginary newspaper, the Sunset Gazette, on the website.

(The rendering is a little messed up on the Archive.org snapshots, but you can get the idea of what my web design skills were back then. Another version of the homepage is here.)

Kidmagine eventually became the seed for MousePaw Media. In fact, you'll notice mentions of a game called "Remmie and the Lab Rats" in places! That became the concept for "Operation SpyRat", the game I've spent the past ten years trying to construct the tools I need to build. My screenname, CodeMouse92, also originated from these games.

"Remmie and the Lab Rats" was actually a practical joke on some IRC friends when I was a kid (they were college students). Hokey as they were, they were a lot of fun to build, and it really got me interested in game design. You can watch playthroughs of my original Remmie and the Lab Rats games on YouTube, in fact:

Remmie and the Lab Rats 1: Rat Rescue
Remmie and the Lab Rats 2: The Search for Remmie
Remmie and the Lab Rats 3: Escape from Grentag Mountain

The first remake was the sort of "proof-of-concept" for what would become MousePaw Media today. You can watch it here:

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jess unrein

I was pianokeygirl@aol.com when I was 7 or 8 years old. It’s the login for my old Neopets account and I’m so sad that I’m locked out of that account forever now. I got email because my mom was Very Online in the 90s and thought it was a good idea.

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jess unrein

My mom is still Very Online, come to think of it.

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manish srivastava

I was 18 in 2002 Yahoo email.
I still use it but for govt official correspondence.

Neelabh_srivastava@yahoo.com

It was made by my friend in my college computer lab 😁 .

I remember , next day I tried to open it in a cyber cafe.... but was totally blank where to sign in... Hahaha...

My friend hacked my email many times ... I was surprised that he knew so much about hacking.

Only after two years I discovered that he doesn't know thing about hacking... he only remember my all secrets to email.

123-greetings ... gif greetings we used to send... the only purpose of emails before Facebook

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Elliot Derhay

You're posting your email that you use for official government communication...? 😐

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manish srivastava

Ya ... because I hardly check it . only once in every quarter ending o :). Anyway, my Gmail is also available in every article.

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Robin Kretzschmar • Edited on

I'm 28 right now (apparently a serial killer according to the tweet 😅).
My first E-Mail address was a t-online address because that was the go-to provider at the time my parents got their first ISP contract at home. The whole family had to choose an email address so everyone had 3 days to come up with a nickname and register it.

During my early days of childhoof back when I couldn't pronounce my name "Robin", I used to introduce my self as bimpfampf. Don't ask why, no one expect myself could pronounce that word but until the age of 4, I told everyone that this was my name 😂

This mail lived on until I started my training at the age of 16 and my mentor told me I must create a business suitable address right now! So we created one with my full name and that was the day I started to abandon the old one... 👻

Fun fact: no one bat an eye on the name for this long.

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Aaron Schlesinger

AOL! I was something like 13 or so. I don't remember the whole thing, but it started with aschlesinger. I got into email because why not, it came on a CD!

Then I discovered AIM and it didn't matter anymore. Then Hotmail, then Gmail. I'm using Fastmail now, but I admire Gmail a lot. It seems like the platform has been 5+ years ahead on features and just raw technology (speed etc...)

Outlook might be catching up these days on some of the AI stuff though

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Ken Bellows

My first email address was @yahoo.com, made during 6th grade computer class in 2001 so I could log into Neopets, and based on a Pokemon. I won't share it here just because I still use the same username, albeit @gmail.com since high school

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Tulsi Prasad

Haha, this is funny!

I was young and I lived with my uncle for a long time, he was into computers so he made me one although I was in grade 3 and I didn't use it until my 6th grade. It was on @yahoo, later I changed it to Gmail.

The funny part is, almost for a year I was typing my email in the URL bar and always getting something else. and I didn't know it had a password coz I wasn't said so! 🙈 I figured it all out when I made one myself 3 years later. 😅 I still don't know what my password was, I forgot my email too 😆

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Stephanie Handsteiner

My very first mail address was one of the 5 addresses we got from the ISP, I was like 8 or 9 years old, when I got that. I don't even know what name I used. 🤔

My first serious one was an @hotmail address, I mostly used it to log into MSN Messenger, though. Then, when google launched gmail I registered one of those, still use that today. 😁

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Carlos Chacin ☕👽

I'm 38 yo, my first email was @hotmail, my wife was my girlfriend at that time created the account for me when I started computer science because I didn't know how to do it (I've never touched a computer before)

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Dave Jacoby

I was 18 years old, and the platform was MUSIC, or Multi User System for Interactive Computing, on BITNET, which meant Because It's Time. The various networks were connecting, but they weren't congealed into The Internet yet. I'm not willing to share the whole, but it was @sdsumus.bitnet, and we had to use bang paths in order to send mail to "real" addresses, so it was something like @sdsumus.bitnet!utoronto.edu. (Or something like that. It was decades ago.)

I didn't have any computing courses that used this; I asked for it, I got it, I joined email lists. Some of which back-ended onto NetNews, so I got to see Serdar Argic deny the the Armenian Genocide whenever you did did something like suggest that "That movie was a real TURKEY".

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Thomas H Jones II • Edited on

BITNET was so great for sending spoofed emails. Route your email through the right gateways and totally wash away your originating email address (though, the recipient ended up seeing an email address that looked like ${SECOND_TO_LAST_GATEWAY_NAME}@${LAST_GATEWAY_NAME} (Trinity University's was great for source-washing).

Always hated UUCP mail. Could take weeks for a message to transit the full path (and it was always a challenge to figure out the fastest bang-path to your recipient). Still: was better than trying to exchange email with FidoNet users.

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Arit Amana

I wouldn't say this was my first-ever email address, but it is the one I first remember 😄

It was trpclldy@yahoo.com 😣

I was in my late teens.

I got the email for use with GeoCities and MySpace accounts. 🎉

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Rob Kendal {{☕}}

Ahh mine was in the good old days of Hotmail...

'Twas bpk68@hotmail.co.uk.

Fairly simple to explain:

The 'bpk' part is my initials (Bob is short for Robert, P is my middle initial, and unsurprisingly K for Kendal). The '68' part would have been '69' because, well, '69', but 16 year old me thought that was a little on the nose (ahem, that's what she said).

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Glenn Carremans

My very first email address was made by my step father at the time, I was 12 years old I think. And it was an @msn.com, yes these existed 😅
I still have it but don't use it anymore, I keep it if case I need to log back into some old platform again (that I can't remember that I joined) and need to do a password reset or change email verification.
Other than that I don't use it anymore, it gets bombed with spam mails everyday now. I switched to gmail a long time ago and recently also started using my own mail domain.

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Ben Halpern Author

I think my first email was actually associated with my first website, a .tk domain.

Then I got hotmail, then moved to yahoo.ca, then used my university email for a while (mta.ca) then actually got gmail so I could use Google+, and that’s been my personal address ever since.

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Khoa Che

If your first email address is on your domain, you are an alien.

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Michele

I had so many .tk domains.

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Ben Halpern Author

😄

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Nikodemus Karlsson • Edited on

In was in the middle of the 90:s, I was about 30 years old and a friend referred med to a Swedish, unix based hosting called Algonet. They included an email address, a public_html directory with ability to run CGI scripts. Connection was made by a phone modem (high phone bills!) and it was like magic when my home computer accessed the whole internet. I made a script for my computer to call Algonet at nights for example to fetch emails, when the rate was lower.

I still use some of the things I learned at Algonet. Today, I run my own Linux server as a VPS and I still have a public_html directory for publishing some experimental stuff. I see on the bill that 4 MB quota was included. A huge space!

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Hadrian Hughes

hadrian@inkstickstudio.com

I was 12 and I spent my pocket money on a domain and cPanel hosting so I could mess around with Dreamweaver and upload my little Flash games.

I ended up using the email address as the parental controls email on my World of Warcraft account, and then the hosting ran out and I lost access to my account controls forever.

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Kasey Speakman

My first one was probably on a local ISP, probably 16 or 17. My first free email was on angelfire dot com. Which is not a thing anymore. I got on gmail back when it was invite only (but not particularly hard to get an invite).

I'd actually love to get off of gmail now. But the more privacy-focused alternatives (hosted in countries with strong privacy protections) are still too hard to deal with. So I'm still looking for the alternative to present itself. The straw for me was when I looked at the data Google kept on me. And I noticed some trips and travel itineraries that I did not book through Google and I could not delete. The reason is because they scraped it from gmail emails. To delete the info they collected on me, I would have to delete the emails themselves.

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Younes

I was 10 year old and it was on msn.(rest in piece 🙏🏻)

My mouse was broken but I don't know why I was done of waiting my aunt to create me an account. So I created mine one day by spamming the Tab key of my keyboard 😂👌🏻

The reason ? Just to wizz some people on msn 😂

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@lukeocodes 🕹👨‍💻

horza07@hotmail.com because I played theme park as a kid! For a $50,000 start, you made a new park with your nickname "HORZA". It meant that my brother knew I was cheating because of my name, so I made it my name for tons of games after that! Registered in 1998, I wanted horza@hotmail.com and it suggested 07, presumably because 01, 02, 03, 04, 05, and 06, were taken!

The 90s were a fun strange time.

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Filipe Herculano • Edited on

My first need for an email account was when I was a teenager and needed to sign up for msn messenger I think

I tried using just “filipe” and it was taken, which made me sad so I looked at the first thing in front of me, which was a Samsung Syncmaster 757DFX monitor and that’s how “filipe_dfx@domain.com” became my first email

I think if I knew how to speak English at the time I would have gone with syncmaster instead lol

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Merel Staal

I was around 11 and it was a hotmail address my dad made for me. I felt really cool having an email address, but the problem was that I was the only one in my friend group who did. So I had no one to send mail to. Did not use it for 2 years and then the internet went big around here and everyone got an email address.

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Ben Sinclair • Edited on

Hmm.
1993, my exciting university times, using diskless workstations or ancient-even-by-then dumb terminals and a PAD.

ssusncla was my username at university. "SSU" was the code for Computer Science. Half my coursemates' usernames started with that and half with "SHU" which was the code for Cybernetics or Engineering, not sure which. The split seemed arbitrary since we were all doing the same degrees.

"SNCLA" was a mangling of my name to fit in the remaining 5 characters, making 8 in total.

Along with the account came email. I'd been used to local LAN mail before, but hadn't quite twigged that this one let you mail other universities... let alone other random organisations around the world.

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dmdinh22 • Edited on

Something @aol.com, @hotmail.com and then @yahoo.com. Made the switch to @gmail.com in high school and haven't looked back.

Don't remember the whole address, but my first email was probably sometime during middle school when AOL had those free trial disks.

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Julio Lozovei

I was about 10 or 11. I don't remember much, but I've made it on school, within the state servers designed for schoolarships; sorry, I don't remember the address hahaha...

The first email I've created by myself (for personal purposes) was a Hotmail account, with about 15.
I was trying to create a nice combination of my first and last names, and lozo.julio@hotmail.com came out - my parents created similar nicks for them.

I've created my current email, a Gmail account (jlozovei@gmail.com), about 4 years ago. Since then, I stopped to use lozo.julio as my primary email.

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Hieu Nguyen

I was 10 years old. I had just received my first computer. It was a yahoo account. it was "phatboii123@yahoo.com". the "phatboii" is supposed to sound like "fat boy" since I was a chubby kid back then.

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Peyton McGinnis

mcginnis01@earthlink.net. Pretty self explanatory.

I was around 10 at the time. My family had started homeschooling and my dad thought it would be a good idea to set one up on my tiny homeschooling laptop.

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Valentin Baca • Edited on

age 13

Yahoo!

nightwalker<some numbers><my initials>@yahoo.com

I was really into vampires as a teen and "night walker" was what I thought cool was at the time.

I remember when I was a bit older I had to call our ISP at one point when our dial-up wasn't working and had to read my email aloud to someone. "So...you take walks at night?" I'm cringing to this day.

I got my boring "grown up" gmail address back when you had to get an invite, circa 2005 (age 17 at the time).

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Reaper

Somewhere around 2011 was when I made one.
it was for a Youtube Channel
SSSidGGG

lost the email as i lost the number it was associated with.

sidgrocks@gmail.com

Have a similar one right now

sidgroks@gmail.com

Also have a business mail that I use for official stuff.

ahoy@barelyhuman.dev

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Hassan Schroeder

To the best of my recollection my first email address was on a Model 204 mainframe system in the mid-'80s -- everyone in the company had one. Could not tell you what the address was to save my life 😀

Might have had an Internet email in late '88, but definitely got one in '89 when I started at Sun. At the time mail was delivered directly from workstation to workstation, so you needed to know the name of the computer of the person you wanted to reach, e.g. hassan@ripple (internally) or hassan@ripple.sun.com externally. UUCP-style addresses also worked, so com!sun!ripple!hassan (IIRC). Good times 😀

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Thomas H Jones II

89 or 90 was around the time all the interns I was IRC'ing with were mailing from @eng.sun.com. They'd get email faster if you mailed to their workstations' FQDNs, though.

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Utkarsh Talwar
  1. I think I was ~12
  2. Gmail
  3. It was a little silly. I wish I could say it only included my name but nope. XD
  4. I wanted to use Orkut. Needed an email account for that. A friend helped me sign up in a cyber cafe.
  5. I still actually use that email account. 😅
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Vicente Reyes • Edited on

I was 15, my brother and I were told to create our own email address so we could speak with our relatives in the US. My brother created his on hotmail, I used yahoo. My brothers' was something like jaime_neutron at hotmail and mine was something like icen015 at yahoo. Recently I checked my email and it still works with a gazillion spam emails lol

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Pachi 🪐 (she/her/ela)

I was... maybe 12? I thing it was bol...
I don't remember why but I fancied myself a poet back them I guess, because it was patypoetisa@bol.com , poetisa meaning female poet in Portuguese.

I had totally forgot about that until now xD
I never really used it because I had no access to computers back them.

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Afrida Anzum Aesha • Edited on

The far I can remember, it was probably 2007/2008, I was then around 13 years old. That time I had no prior knowledge about email, all I used to do, was playing online games using my father's modem. Apparently, some of the sites needed an email address for registration. And then, there comes my first email.
Perhaps, my first one was @yahoo mail or @hotmail. I used a fancy name like candy floss or butterfly something 🤣

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node77

God, this brings me back. I was a PC support technician, and we were still running Windows 3.1! I had a copy of AOL and created an ID. Little did I know at the time that would also be my first email address. I was still in college, so I must have been 20 or 21

I was curious with AOL, had my modem for old BBS boards, and eventually found the Internet through college and work. From there, I was hooked. Soon after I was using Mosaic and Netscape, and downloading news groups.

I still have that AOL address to this day.

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Thomas H Jones II
  • 18
  • Penn State University's Center for Academic Computing IBM mainframe (at the time, a brand, spanking new ES/9000-600 — this was 1988)
  • THJ100@PSUVM.PSU.EDU (still some USENET posts to be found under that one)
  • School-issued
  • It used to be super easy to spoof email address origins: email systems prior to at least 1997 didn't really have meaningful security to try to ensure senders were authenticated or verifiable.
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Kody James Ague

13 or so.
It was either Juno or Hotmail, i forget which came first? I still have the hotmail account but don't really use it.
I'd been on the internet since bulletin boards and 9600 baud modems, it made sense to get into email when it became available.
I'm 39 and been on computers since I was about 3 or 4. My dad owned his own business and I did data entry for him at a pre-k age. lol 1 cent per line on a TRS-80. Fun times!

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Mohamad Kalaaji

My first mail is when I was 9 years old, hotmail mail was back then done by my Uncle

Shifted all of my accounts (including Facebook back when Zuckerberg has his face on the login page) and it got doxed with spam mail due to MySpace breach in around 2006-2007. Deleted it around a month ago still didn't get hacked or anything but it is kinda useless

Now I use Gmail and emails from domain providers but trying to use an alias instead of the real thing (my first gmail got included inside of the breach for Aptoide that happened a couple days ago but luckily I moved all of my accounts to a different mail so it is also kinda useless but kept it with 2 factor authentication)

And for anyone who is interested, I don't keep all of my accounts entitled for more than 5 years, they get shifted to a different mail so that if a breach occurred and this mail is included then I wouldn't care much (thought I use a password manager and all but safety is key)

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Enno Rehling (恩諾)

I started my comp sci degree in 1993, so I must have been 20 years old at that time. I knew about "The Internet" through a friend whose father taught at UBC, and knew that I wanted an account on the university's system, and during the freshman orientation, I asked the guy showing us around campus about that. As new students, we weren't going to get an account in the computer science department's system for another two years, but the university had a pool of VT100 terminals connected to some Linux PCs that were able to get online, and that's where I got my first account and email address: q09960@pbhrzx.uni-paderborn.de - that's got part of my student id and the name of one of the Linux PCs in there. That finally let me get in touch my Canadian friend through his dad's UBC address. Email software choices at the time were pine and elm, just like your browser choices were gopher and gopher.

A year later I had a student job writing code for a PhD candidate, and got a "proper" account in the computer department, working on Sun workstations instead of the old VT100 terminals. NCSA mosaic had caused gopher to be replaced with HTTP, and there was even an upstart company named Netscape that made a browser with email functionality. Never looked back at pine and elm.

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Michele

I was 15 or 16 at the time (1999/2000). We didn't have a computer at home so I would go to the library at school and check my email which mostly consisted of pointless newsletters I signed up for.

The address was jazzgirltrump@hotmail.com (trump being short for trumpet :) )

I also used it for MSN messenger when we finally got a computer at home.

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Lou Franco • Edited on

Around 1988, in college. Don't remember it, but it was approximately my name at-cooper.edu -- I only used it to email other students or professors and then to post to newsgroups. In 1992, I got my first job and they had some insane email address (many special characters) from their internet provider (we didn't have a domain) -- around 1995/96, that became something normal with a company domain.

Here is a relevant Dilbert from that era that exactly described my situation: dilbert.com/strip/1996-10-22

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Vladimir

First email from russian mail.ru Still alive.

This portal I got from science magazine article about internet. It was 2002 year.

Full email float45@mail.ru
float is double mention - is surname translation also is data type programming languages
45 is year of the Victory because I have interested in the history

I'm 34 years old

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John Kirtley • Edited on

emericaskater on Yahoo

I believe I was in middle school and needed an email account for MySpace and AIM lol.

I loved skateboarding growing up and Emerica was one of the popular brands at the time.

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Matt Ellen

It wasn't technically mine, but I had access to my Mum's email address supplied by our ISP when we first got dial up. I would have been 15, I guess.

Our provider was Virgin, so the email address ended in @virgin.net I think.

I remember we were given a small amount of web space, kinda like geocities, so I put my "deep" teenage thoughts up there for the world to see :D It's all long gone, now, thankfully.

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Mahmoud Ibn Samy

My first email was @spacetoon.com 🤷‍♂️
Just to know, spacetoon is the greatest cartoon channel in the Arab world. They also had a magazine that has articles, written stories, and manga.
2005 I think was my first time creating an email, just because I read in an article in the magazine about the importance of having an email! I was like 10 years old boy and that made me proud as I thought making an email will be my first step to lead the world or something like that 🚶‍♂️
I opened their website and made an account. Wrote articles in their website forums happily. and after a week I knew that I can't send or receive messages to and from other services clients! I mean if you have a gmail or a windowslive email I can't contact you! It was a policy that I accepted without knowing, I asked them and they replied 'you can only contact people with @spacetoon.com email'! 🤦‍♂️
So I couldn't lead the world at the age of 10 😂

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Jesse M. Holmes

My first was an selu.edu address that we used on PINE, but I don't remember exactly what it was.
The first one I selected myself was jjams@rocketmail.com. I'm sure it had something to do with my guitar obsession at that age. I had that one for years before it became jjams.rm@yahoo.com, and that was the first time I realized that companies could go out of business or be bought by other companies. Any other RocketMail alumni out there?

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Ben Overmyer

I was in the 7th grade. I'm not sure exactly how old I was, but it was around 1994 or so. I don't actually remember the email address, but it was a school-provided one.

I remember this because I still have a printout of an email from a kid in Australia on dot-matrix paper somewhere. We were email pen-pals, briefly.

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Wesley De Groot

How old were you?
11 (2001)

What platform was it?
MSN Messenger (still miss that service...) /Hotmail

What was the whole address if you're willing to share?
wes_1990 at msn.com

How/why did you get on email in the first place?
MSN Messenger

And anything else you'd like to add to your story....
With the release of Windows Vista i've switched to wes [at] vista.aero

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Dana Ottaviani

I had my first email when I started college and all students were given an email to use while they studied there.

I was 18 and it was an edu email on Outlook (it wasn't always Outlook, they moved from an older platform I can't remember the name of). Typically a student would be assigned their last name like ottaviani@school.edu, but since my sister was going to the same college as me (we're twins) I was given dottavian.