In June, I wrote about Sam Yoon’s unfortunate habit of adding people without their consent to his campaign’s spam distribution lists.
I’ve complained to Yoon’s office twice about the spamming — once in August 2006 and once in March 2009. Yoon did not have the courtesy to respond to either of my complaints.
I thought the spamming had stopped after my March 2009 complaint. Alas, it appears that I was wrong. I just received another piece of spam from him announcing that he and Michael Flaherty are joining forces to beat Menino.
Here’s the complaint I sent in response:
To: Sam Yoon <firstname.lastname@example.org>, Sam Yoon <email@example.com>
Cc: Michael Flaherty <Michael.F.Flaherty@cityofboston.gov>
Subject: Spamming constituents and ignoring their complaints is not a good way to win votes
Dear Councilor Yoon,
I think it’s time for a new mayor in Boston. I think abolishing the BRA and instituting term limits for the office of major are great ideas, and I’d love to be able to vote for a candidate who promises to put them into effect as mayor.
However, I also believe that how a candidate treats his constituents when he’s running for office is a good indication of how he’ll treat them afterwards. How, then, can I vote for your joint ticket with Michael Flaherty, if you insist on treating me and other voters with disrespect and ignoring our complaints?
I wrote to you in August 2006. I complained about the fact that you had added me to a bulk email list without my consent. I asked you to remove me from your bulk email lists and to reconsider your practice of adding people to spam lists without their consent. You did not have the courtesy to respond, although at least the spam stopped for a while.
Then, in March 2009, you spammed me again to announce your candidacy for mayor. Again, I wrote to you and complained about your spamming. Again, you did not have the courtesy to respond. And again, the spam continued; you’ve just spammed me again this morning with the announcement of your joint ticket with Flaherty.
Political campaigns are exempt from following the CAN-SPAM act. However, that is an onerous loophole inserted into the law by politicians putting their own interests ahead of the interests of their constituents, and therefore, most politicians who send bulk email abide by the provisions of the act even though they are not required to do so. The spam you sent me this morning violated the act, because it provided no contact information about the sender and no method for unsubscribing from future mailings. The spam you sent me in March at least was in compliance with the act, but although I followed the unsubscribe instructions and complained to you about it in email, and you still spammed me again today. Unsubscribe instructions that don’t work are worse than no unsubscribe instructions at all.
What I must conclude from all of this is that you consider your own selfish needs and desires to be more important and more worthy of respect than the needs and desires of your constituents. A person who thinks like that is not the kind of person I want to be working for me at City Hall.