ccLoop wants to help tackle the email overload problem. However, unlike many collaboration tools that are trying to take information and conversations out of our inboxes, ccLoop is attempting to improve email by making it into a better and more streamlined communication tool. It effectively offers a business-focused take on the kind of mailing list functionality provided by Google Groups (s goog) and Yahoo Groups (s yhoo).
If you’re used a mailing list app before, the concept will be familiar. You can create a mailing list (called a “loop”) through the web interface; it can be designated as being for a team (only open to people you invite), for an organization (open to anyone from your company, based on their email address, and anyone you invite), or public (open to anyone). You can also specify whether anyone can post to the loop, or just yourself. You then give your loop a name, which forms its email address (so you could have [email protected], for example), and invite members. People can then post messages to the loop by sending emails to its address and will receive messages that others send to the list.
Once your loops are set up, you can primarily work with them through your email client, although you can also view and search the messages and files that have been sent to each loop through the web interface. The web interface also offers facilities to manage your loops and adjust editing settings like who can post to each loop, and you can specify whether you receive every email from each loop, get a daily digest or only access the loop via the web interface. Additionally, you can use the web interface to follow loops that others have created, and share loops with others.
Realistically, ccLoop isn’t going to solve the email overload problem on its own, but it does offer a useful way for organizations to structure and archive email conversations — discussing projects or sending out company-wide updates, for example — and for individuals to determine how they receive the messages from those conversations. It isn’t really doing anything new, as it’s effectively just a slightly more modern take on the kind of mailing list functionality offered by the likes of Google Groups and Yahoo Groups. However, those apps have clunky interfaces; ccLoop makes setting up and managing mailing lists a breeze. The app is currently in beta and is free; premium features will likely be introduced at some point.