Opt-In Email Marketer Accidentally(?) Spams List Members
28 August 2000 Edition|
Hundreds, possibly thousands of people who decided to join New Zealand
operated opt-in email list operator Opt-In NZ found their email boxes
clogged with emails this weekend after a technical hitch.
Several Aardvark readers contacted me to complain that they had received
hundreds of email messages -- each one identical except for the greeting.
After discovering the embarrassing mistake, Opt-In NZ quickly went into
damage-control mode and sent an email of apology to some of those affected.
In the email they said:
Our most profound apologies for today's mass number of emails. It was an
accident. Our web development firm delivered faulty programming to us
which we innocently used in sending out our Member's Communique regarding
And yes, the irony of the matter is outright unbelievable: sending out an
anti-spam email by spamming our members with dozens of messages.
Again, our most profound apologies - we truly regret this ever happened.
Our web development firm will be sending out an apology letter to you.
They have also fixed their programming glitch. Therefore, we give you our
solemn pledge that this will never happen again.
Opt-In NZ Membercare
Yes, it certainly was ironic -- since the page being promoted in the bulk
emailing is headed "Say No To Spam, Say YES to Opt-In NZ!" One can't help
but wonder if this was really just a coincidence.
On the page referred to in the email they offer links to a number of resources
which may be useful in the fight against spam -- but they didn't include a link to
the article that Aardvark carried
on this topic back in January 1998 (note that many of the links on that page
have been rendered invalid by the passage of time)
Is This Legal?
You can trust a lawyer right?
They wouldn't deliberately tell porkies would they?
Well, if I were the folks at Govett Quilliam, I'd give my web designers a
kick up the backside for producing
this site which asks for your
credit card details and purports to be running on "our secure server."
Sorry guys, neither the form, nor the script which processes the data entered
appear to be secured by any form of encryption.
Not only that -- but there are clear signs that this site was built by a rank
amateur -- the text box where you are supposed to enter your question doesn't
even wrap (hint for the web designers: look up the "WRAP=" tag).
One can't help but wonder if this site wasn't built by the office-girl during
a tea-break using her trusty copy of FrontPage.
I'm sure quality of legal advice on offer must be better than the technical
implementation of the website.
Nathan Balasingham Replies
Nathan Balasingham, the promoter of the magnetic fuel saver devices that
has been the subject of so much debate in the past week has sent me
a right of reply which I'm publishing
As is my policy, his reply is published unedited and unabridged. Readers
are left to draw their own conclusions.
As always, your feedback is welcomed.