In 1995, NBA Superstar and Space Jam winner, Michael Jordan used a fax machine and two perfectly scribed words – I’m Back – to announce he was returning from early retirement.
25 years later, soccer’s greatest ever player*, Lionel Messi announces his departure from lifelong club, FC Barcelona. Not through tweets or a press conference but with a trusted fax machine.
Messi’s career helixes with Barcelona and official documentation was the only way to respectfully announce his departure. This is a stark contrast to LeBron James’ infamous Decision, where he left his hometown team… on a TV show.
All that said, every time the fax machine becomes the messenger of choice for seismic change, droves of social commenters, many of whom have never seen one, rightfully ask – why?
Fax is Verified Hard Copy
There have been tabloid whispers (72pt headlines, actually) of Lionel Messi’s departure from FC Barcelona for years. Hard copy facsimile turned those whispers into shouts.
Tweets can be passed as hacks or disgruntled social managers, emails are subject to fraud and forgery. Fax allows you to send original documents with the original legally binding signatures or brand seal.
Bullet-proof verification and compliance is why fax is still used in legal and healthcare sectors. Messi’s brand is worth over $1bn so I’m sure any tentative steps near his likely new home, Manchester City, will be communicated through cloud faxing.
(Cloud) Fax is More Secure than Email
Fax rose to real prominence during the 80s and, in the eyes of extremely influential people, it became and remains the only way to send secure communications. Now, in 2020, email should be the assumed message-tool of choice. It’s fast, it’s easy to use and accessible from anywhere.
So why didn’t Messi’s camp just send an email? Well, to start, around 41% of all email accounts have been subject to malicious behaviour.
Email interception, hacking and phishing attempts are common and, as with most modern tools, methods of maliciously accessing messages are becoming more sophisticated.
Your message is secure with traditional, cloud and even car fax (likely in most athlete agent’s cases and astonishingly 90s). Facsimiles are sent through a line and have to be intercepted at the exact time and point of transmission and this makes interception unlikely. efax offers more security than email with TLS (Transport Layer Security) and SSL protocols.
The Unshakable Cultural Impact
It would be easy to believe that everyone understood how instant messaging apps, social media and even email works. Many are, to put it simply, stuck in their ways and despite advances in communications technology, fax and it’s digital evolution, efax, still live.
Many senior officials, particularly in health, sports, legal and law enforcement, learned that the fax is a professional cornerstone. That kind of acculturation is difficult to change. It is unknown if Messi sent a traditional or online fax but this trusted methodology stated his intent – he wants to respectfully leave his boyhood club.
Fax is still perceived as respectful means of communication and has been modernised for those unfamiliar with the old technology. Virtual (fax to email, email to fax), for example, allows you to send faxes over a private, encrypted internet connection. Faxes can be sent and received to email or sent directly to an office machine. There are also backwards compatibility tools to supercharge your machine with online capabilities.
Online Fax: Carrying the Message and Businesses
Speaking with ESPN, Brian McIntyre, former director of the NBA’s communications department said: “the fax carried us for a very long time”.
Speak with Blueface experts on +353 (1) 524 2000 to find out how cloud communications tools can carry your business now and for a long time into the future.
*Ronaldo, Messi – who knows?