"FLASH! The building's on fire over here"
Back before the invention of the crackling antennae hats we all take for granted today, electro-communication between mags was jealously restricted to Eds, Art Eds, Dep Eds and publishers, possibly to forestall REVOLUTIONARY DISCOURSE of a type that couldn't be conducted by wandering around or on the internal phone lines or something.
The la-di-dah poshboy tool of the LIBERTINE BOURGEOISIE was Quickmail, a sort of company-wide offline e-mail thing (that, entertainingly, frequently crashed because everyone used it to arrange going to the pub and other ENFEEBLING SUPERFLUITY). The stout, honest, callous-handed staff writers and such briefly piggybacked the network with Broadcast, a freeware clone, but because they were uneducated bumpkin louts they were swiftly caught and the prog banned.
Meanwhile, crafty AP operatives were luxuriating in an invisible and undetectable supra-nation of information and perspicacity, like THRUSH with slightly fewer extravagant murders. This was Slowmail.
Initialised with flickering lights in Game Zone by a MYSTERY FIGURE in association with another Mystery Figure and brought to AP by the first one (I'll get you for this - Mystery Figure), Slowmail was a simple but ingenious message exchange for the LOVELY DISENFRANCHISED using the company Macs' built-in sharing capabilities. Mags relied on shared folders to run, shuttling text, pics and pages back and forth, sometimes between buildings, with the piffling ease of dragging something from one folder to another. Usually, one Mac in a mag was the sharing hub; the (otherwise dustily underemployed) screenshot-taking "grabbing Mac" for preference, else the Prod Ed's machine in a fitting nesty web of kerthumping central heartitude.
The Mystery Figures realised that, with shared folders all over the place, nobody would notice another one; and if this extra folder was restricted to flinging around text files, the negligible network traffic would render it effectively invisible, even to the owner of the hub Mac. As an extra precaution, the folder could be made actually invisible, so it wouldn't show up on ordinary network scans. (This also handily meant it could announce itself victoriously to the equipped as "Slowmail" with the trademark Pondering Hobbes icon, rather than crudely disguising itself as "BAD SCREENSHOTS (OLD)" or something.)
A simple structure was established. Each operative would have a personal folder within the shared space, plus there'd be a general, Public area. Writing a note in plain text (using your Mac's built-in Simple Text editor) and saving it in the appropriate folder would "send" the message. Everything else was handled by the sharing; leave your folder and the Public one open and they'd automatically update. All that was required to begin after the eight-month vetting procedure was for you to select an ENTERTAINING COVER NAME, for a folder of that name to be added to Slowmail Central, and for another operative to stroll with STUDIED CASUALNESS to your desk, carrying a floppy disk containing the Slowmail alias (a tiny file pointing to the main folder, WHEREVER THAT MAY BE) and to copy that to your desktop.
Keenly alert readers, such as THOSE WHO MIGHT HAVE BEEN CONSIDERED, will have deduced that, for reasons of communal simplicity, all Slowmail folders were open to all Slowmail operatives (ie, technically anyone could have leafed through anyone else's personal selection of correspondence). This promoted TRUST and POLITENESS.
Slowmail was a tremendous success, hopping from hub to hub as certain mags closed or reconfigured, and the dozen or so tightly knit operatives through its life freely swapped valuable information with all loyalties superseded by allegiance to the SECRET AND INVISIBLE COUNTRY,* and later went on to rob banks together. Slowmail was eventually made obsolete by the rise of THNTRNTeiee, but lives on as a fine example of swift and adaptable low-tech cunning, as a TRIUMPH OF THE WILL and in the first Mystery Figure's conscientious archive of the Public section.
If you didn't know about Slowmail, you were probably suggested for recruitment, but we decided against it and had you killed for security reasons. This explains why you've been lying fairly bored in a crumpled heap for some time now.