Email Chain. "Collective Exchange" (or "Great Quotes").  "We're starting a collective, constructive exchange."  BCC 20 copies. US, 2014.

1. ---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Katy xxx" <>
Date: Feb 5, 2014 12:00 AM
Subject: Collective Exchange

We're starting a collective, constructive exchange. It's a one-time thing and we hope you will participate. Please send an encouraging quote or verse to the person whose name is in position 1 below (even if you don't know him or her). It should be a favorite text verse/motivational poem/meditation that has lifted you when you were experiencing challenging times. Don't agonize over it--it is one you reach for when you need it or the one that you always turn to.

1. Katy xxx

2.  Grace yyy

After you've sent the short poem/verse/meditation/quote/etc. to the person in position 1, and only that person, copy this letter into a new email, move my name to position 1. and put your name in position 2. Only my name and your name should show when you email. Send to 20 friends BCC (blind copy). If you cannot do this in five days, let us know so it will be fair to those participating. It's fun to see where they come from. Seldom does anyone drop out because we all need new ideas and inspiration. The turnaround is fast, as there are only two names on the list, and you only have to do it once

Supplied by Patrick Davison, March 7, 2014.  Same as "Great Quotes" item except for subject line. See below. Second paragraph borrows text from a paper exchange letter. Entered by DWV, March 8, 2014.


Chain Letter Evolution (a history of paper chain letters).      Annotated Index for the Paper Chain Letter Archive

Annotated Index for the utility email archive, /e-archive/.         Daniel W. VanArsdale, index page.

Comment by DWV, 3/8/2014
This example of what I now call the "Collective Exchange" email chain was emailed about three weeks prior to my "Great Quotes" example of the same chain, but a week after the earliest example I have found so far on the web. Notable differences here, compared to "Great Quotes", are the "Collective Exchange" subject, the additional sentence "Don't agonize over it -- it is ...", and omission of the second sentence in Great Quotes ("We have picked those we think would be faithful and make it fun."). The second paragraph, after the two email addresses, is almost the same, and reveals borrowing from the 1995 paperback book exchange letter xe1995_pbbook_s1n2q6.htm as noted in the "GreatQuotes" e-archive entry.

The title "Collective Exchange" suggest that the method of this email may be applied to other exchanges. Favorite links is one that comes to mind. Also  jokes, political slogans or graffiti, etc. Note that it would be easy for the list to grow to three or more names. The most effective number may depend on the structure of authority in the population being solicited. If just one person in an organization or community has much greater status than anyone else, a two entry list seems best because that name will be at the top of second generation copies, without some unknown or possibly disliked third person positioned above the local hero. But if there are more than one very well respected persons in a group, three names can appear on Collective Exchange emails without some unknown outsider appearing above them. That such an appearance is at least perceived as negative for replication explains why both versions of Collective Exchange so far collected bear the request to send  "(even if you do not know him/her)". That this is in parentheses suggest it may have been added subsequent to the initial distribution. It should be interesting to observe the future of this chain email, and any that might be influenced by its methods. If you have an early example or noteworthy modification please email me.