In a recent email message to me entitled “Fighting the Good Fight,” friend, author and politician Michael Burstein referred me to Kate Hutchinson’s blog entry about spamming by Sam Yoon. Michael is an avid reader of my blog and therefore knows that I’ve been in more than a few scraps of my own like Kate’s. What is most amusing about Michael’s referral is that I, too, have first-hand experience with Yoon’s spamming. Here’s the complaint I sent to Yoon on March 3, 2009:
Subject: Political spam => you lose my vote
Back in 2006, I wrote to you at this email address about an issue which concerned me.
You took my email address from my message to you, and without my knowledge or consent, you added me to your bulk email list.
I sent you a complaint about this. Here is what I wrote on August 1, 2006:
It is inappropriate to subscribe someone to a bulk-email newsletter merely because they exchanged email with you. I didn’t ask to be put on your spam list, and you shouldn’t have added me without my permission.
I sent you *private* email about an issue which concerned me, and I expected my email address to remain *private*.
You could have *invited* me to join your newsletter mailing list, but it should have required *positive action from me* for me to actually be subscribed. That’s what it means for a list to be “opt-in”, and opt-in is the *only* reputable way to do bulk email.
I hope you will reconsider your practice of adding people to spam lists without their consent.
You did not respond.
Today, you spammed me again with your announcement about running for mayor.
I don’t patronize businesses that spam. I don’t support charities that spam. And I don’t vote for politicians who spam. Adding me to your spam list back in 2006 without my consent was bad enough; keeping me in your database after I asked you to remove me is completely unacceptable.
Shame on you.
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I did eventually get an apology and a removal from the list, but it took me four emails, two blog posts, and two mentions on Universal Hub for that to happen. It’s nice to know I’m not alone!
I wonder why he doesn’t have someone on staff to delete these email addresses from the list and send apologies.