Are you suffering from MAD (Mail Attachment Disorder)? Chances are that you do. That’s why we created our MAD series: 10 symptoms of Mail Attachment Disorder are uncovered over the course of 5 weeks. Today, we continue the series with Symptom #6 – Aggravated symptoms when left to your own (mobile) devices out there in the field.

It sounds pretty logical that if you are already having a hard time managing email content from your desktop, it is not going to get any easier on your phone somewhere in the boonies. The attachment handling on mobile mail clients varies wildly. As such, mobile forwarding of attachments is not recommended for formal processes, especially when multiple parties are involved with basic or different skill levels.

Yet it does not need to be this way. With a link simply embedded in the emails, all content of a bag can easily be listed, previewed, fully rendered, downloaded AND uploaded. And it goes without saying that the simple embedded link can be forwarded, not just in email, but just as well in text messages, Whatsapp, WeChat, Facebook Messenger, Twitter (including DM), anything really.

Let me provide a speaking example: the architect has sent you a few renderings of the house she is designing for you. Unfortunately, the renderings – 20MB or more a piece – are clearly way too big to all send as attachments, so she has used a popular cloud storage service to send them. No luck, you need to download each and every one of them before you can view, which is very cumbersome and slow on a phone, defeating the purpose of providing a quick idea of the plans.

Luckily, she now will be using in the future – here is what a bag with “heavy” architectural renderings could look like: For elegance’s sake, the link could of course have been embedded underneath a meaningful title such as New renderings after meeting yesterday . Please note that this bag weighs in at over 150MB in total, yet can be clicked and swiped for instant and quick previewing of content, including on a mobile device. And every rendering can be pixel-peeped in original resolution, even on the phone, by individually downloading and viewing a rendering. It means that no special measures need to be taken to fully involve mobile devices, whether smartphone or tablet, in an intricate discussion where attachments are handled via a bag – they simply are first rank citizens, and are even capable of a few additional tricks, such as shooting a photo or video directly into a bag, say for a damage report or a job interview.

The instructions are as standard as ever:

1. Go to , create a digital paper bag and add any content that you might want to put there yourself, possibly an instruction note for participants – in that case, give the file a meaningful name before uploading, such as “Read me first.pdf”.Bookmark the bag (hey, it’s just a mini website) and/or consider registering it (under menu on the left) not to lose track of its owner URL.

2. Under the menu on the left, go to “Share bag” and select both “Download files” and “Upload files”, then “Copy link to clipboard”.

3. Now simply paste this link into your email with some basic instructions for the participants. Maybe something like “bookmark this link for easy reference”, or “keep this link on the first line of every mail, together with the court case number”. When the recipients click the link, they will see the bag and its current contents. They can browse, preview and download the files, but importantly, they can upload, too. During an upload session, a contributor can delete (only) the files being uploaded. Afterwards, no more deletions are possible by contributors, only by the owner.

4. Contributors can keep the bag up to date over time. When new documents or new versions are created, they can add them to the bag, and everyone will have access to them instantly.

5.In the case as described, only the owner has delete rights to files, so if the content set needs to be curated (e.g. the deletion of non-current versions) then the owner will need to do so. However, if deemed useful and appropriate, you can share the owner link with some or all other participants, for a more distributed curation role.

6. In any case, your bag will act as the digital twin of a king size paper file binder: even the free Quartz Edition of allows for 500 files and 1GB for up to six months. Aside from totally streamlining your content collection process, that should take ample care of any attachment size concerns!

We do have a request for you as well. We know MAD is spreading. Should you have encountered any additional symptoms of MAD that haven’t been covered, then please, by all means, create a document (.docx, PDF, .txt) and add it to the following MAD bag. I personally promise to write an extensive answer and update the bag accordingly so it becomes a living collection of pragmatic MAD solutions.

— Paul Carpentier, CEO, Esoptra


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Go to and discover what we mean with ultra-low-friction content sharing.

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