Just Leave Me Alone Already
I tend to avoid online sites that require you to register and provide information including email addresses. In my experiences companies cannot resist sending email and my email load is extremely heavy and I want less email, not more. Sometimes, though, what I need to do requires an online registration and giving an email address to a company I would really prefer not to have it.
Recently, I had to register online with AT&T Wireless. My iPhone was getting repeated text spams and I wanted it to stop. The only way to do this is register online. Registering online required giving them an email address.
The text spam has stopped, but they have been sending me almost daily emails since then. Each email has an opt-out, and I have availed myself of every opportunity to opt-out. Each opt-out link takes me to a different site, a different page, a different process.
In two of the cases, AT&T seems to be violating the new CAN SPAM provisions. For one, I had to tell them what I wanted to opt-out of (email or phone) and then was taken to a page where I had to input my cell number, my email address and request to be removed. In another case, I was forced to login to my online wireless account and then was able to change preferences. In only one of the 3 opt-outs I have requested, was the opt-out form actually a single click, just requiring my email address.
I am wondering just how many mailing lists AT&T added my address to and how often they will continue sending me mail after their 10 days are up. It is this level of frustration, that mail just keeps coming and coming and coming even after the recipient has repeatedly attempted to opt-out, that causes people to hit the “this is spam” button on mail that the sender thinks is opt-in.
But, really, AT&T, please stop sending me mail that I never asked for, and that I have repeatedly asked you to stop sending me by jumping through your hoops. Oh, and you may consider sharing the opt-out data with all the same internal groups that you shared my email address with initially.