Email address frenzy!

Since I first entered the “internetz” circa 1999 I’ve had 4 different personal email addresses (NOT counting various work email addresses).

First, it was AOL, then my college URI.edu address, then Hotmail because AOL was “a joke,” THEN Yahoo because Hotmail was a joke…and NOW I feel Yahoo might be a joke and I should switch YET again to Gmail?! Where does it end folks? Will I forever be changing my email address every few years just to have the coolest, newest handle or is there really an advantage to me getting a Gmail account? I’ve completely phased out my AOL account (although as I noted in my earlier post, I totally DO still have my original AIM screen name), I basically keep my Hotmail account as my “sign up for stuff” account that I rarely check, although I definitely still get email there, and my Yahoo is currently my main, sent to my phone, email account.
To be honest, Yahoo works fine for my personal needs and rarely gives me any problems except for the occasional freeze or temporary glitch on my iPhone, but overall, it does the job. So, my question is this, should I really switch to Gmail just “because” or are there legitimate benefits to it? I need some concrete reasons why people! And is there an easy way to get the word out on my new address, any services that will forward from all my old accounts, etc.? Do social media types really judge someone by their email handle–I mean I’ve seriously heard people say (or occasionally seen people tweet) things like “he called himself a social media expert-and then gave me his Hotmail address, LOLZ” or something to that effect. So what’s the deal folks, convince me, switch to Gmail to be “hip” or just stop the insanity and keep what I have for now?
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