Email revives the art of the love-letter

Research finds that boys boast about the size of their in-box online...

Email is reviving the lost art of the love-letter in Britain, according to a new survey commissioned by the world's leading Web based email service, Hotmail.

The survey, carried out by Internet psychology expert Helen Petrie of the University of Hertfordshire, found that email is fast becoming Britain's favourite means of communicating amorously, with a significant proportion of Internet users regularly indulging in online flirtation.

Petrie's research reinforced traditional stereotypes of the dating game showing that women are far more likely than men to go online to chat with friends openly about sex, although men are about five times as likely to go online in search of romance. It even discovered that one in three men will boast about the size of their in-box, a trend appropriately named the "virtual posing pouch" by researchers.

The survey was carried out on 100 volunteers and also indicated that email is taking over from the telephone as the most popular way for teenagers to communicate with friends.

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