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Old 09-29-2004, 06:59 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default [09-29-2004] No Escape from the CrackBerry

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Washington lawyer William Wilhelm knows from experience that not everybody loves his BlackBerry as much as he does.

"I once had a date become apoplectic because we were in the airport terminal before vacation, and I did the one final BlackBerry check," Wilhelm said. The girlfriend was fed up with a relationship punctuated by Wilhelm fiddling with the wireless device to check hundreds of e-mails a day.

BlackBerrys, sometimes referred to as CrackBerrys among addicted adherents, make e-mail portable, available anytime and almost anywhere. Airline delays become office time. An elevator ride becomes a chance to dash off a reply. A companion's restroom trip at a restaurant provides just enough time to close a deal electronically.

For some, like Wilhelm, the pocket-size devices have created a borderless world of new opportunities for multitasking. BlackBerry -- and a growing number of cell phones like them that come with tiny keyboards -- have made it easier and more tempting than ever to sneak in work during personal time, and personal messaging at work.

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