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Old 12-02-1999, 12:28 AM   #1
Arn
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Cool What to do with stupid users...


I'm sorry if this sounds insensitive...

But some users are just STUPID.

I just got this angry email from a guy complaining about the SPAM I keep sending him.

This "SPAM" is an OPT-IN mailing list which requires you to click on a link in a confirmation email after you signup to activate your subscription.

The only way to get activated is to click on the link.

Anyhow - what else to do?

I just rewrote my confirmation email with a huge "YOU MUST READ THIS". I certainly don't want to discourage people signing up, but in order to get around the stupid people, I almost need to make people beg to be on the list.

And, I don't really care about this particular user's opinion... but SPAM complaints to my provider would cause lots of problems.

arn

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Old 12-02-1999, 05:32 AM   #2
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I've had similar problems once: for that guy remove him yourself, and if possible ban him from rejoining.

I now put a message at the top of each e-mail saying why they are getting it - "This is not spam because..." - additionally you might want to put in an explanation of how to reply if your reply address differs from the sending address.

One other trick is to capture their first name, and then personalize the e-mail "Dear Fred". Unfortunately this takes a lot of CPU time if you have a large list.

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Old 12-02-1999, 09:08 AM   #3
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Arn,

This post had me laughing. Sad but true, I think we're all becoming SPAM sensitive.

I've written a newsletter as part of being a moderator of a online community, where it was clearly an opt in situation, and at the top of each newsletter it clearly stated you are receiving this as part of your membership in the whatever club.

And yet each month a received a handful of e-mails from disgruntled folks calling me all sorts of names for invading their privacy!!!

As someone who's been in jobs all my life where I've dealt with people, through sales, managing, teaching, etc., I often talk to strangers.

Likewise on the web I often see someones web site, or post on a forum, and send them an e-mail to invite them to another forum, or visit my site.

Just recently I sent such an e-mail to a person, and they replied back with:

"Please remove me from your mailing list"

That's what made me laugh when I read your post. I think people are realling losing the meaning of the intent of SPAM regulations.

If we only accepted e-mails from folks we knew, how would we use the net to meet new people???



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Old 12-02-1999, 11:18 AM   #4
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Arrow

Great topic and Iv'e had similar experiences.

If your site doesn't have a "Feedback Form" it should. This helps the users who can't find or don't want to find the remove link.

I also put this remove link at the top and bottom of every mailing along with a *** PLEASE DO NOT REPLY TO THIS E-MAIL. Use the folllowing link to automatically remove yourself......etc...bla bla

My sign up page on this site goes to great lenghts with text and even the remove link etc.

Having done all this I still get a few blank e-mails and rather strange comments. About 5 for every 1000 names. The WC thought on a ban or block of an e-mail is a great idea. Mine doesn't have this but I'm going to look for one that does.

HTH

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Old 12-02-1999, 01:21 PM   #5
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I have plenty more stupid users stories. I think a very high proportion of surfers don't understand e-mail at all, and don't understand different web sites:

For example: I get lots of e-mail from users of a well-known ISP (completely different name, URL, colors etc.) simply because I have some tips on that ISP's proprietary software. Most of them think I am that ISP and want to close their account. Arghh!

tteenie - if you need help on your refer thing, feel free to e-mail me on the webmaster@ans2000.com address.

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Old 12-02-1999, 02:48 PM   #6
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Glad to see I'm not alone...

WC - indeed I do include a customized portion with their email address, but not their name. I don't think it would matter anyway... I doubt the same people would be appreciate the significance of a personalized email.

I do include an unsubscribe link in every email.

I will start adding a little blurb at the beginning... "this is not spam..."

Websitesponsors: that ***** about your hosting and the email. I've been very aware of host's policies on lots of email. http://www.very-cool-stuff.com/ubb/smile.gif

arn
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Old 12-02-1999, 03:41 PM   #7
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Wow!!! Thanks WC, (most graciously) I don't know where to start. I'm not a very technical person though, I think I should warn ya... but I can learn. http://www.very-cool-stuff.com/ubb/smile.gif
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Old 12-02-1999, 04:01 PM   #8
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Tina, I'm happy to help also. Just in case our "Senior Numero Uno geek" alias WC needs more help which is doubtfull http://www.very-cool-stuff.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

Arn, I looked at your text for the list. I'm the first to admit I probably "overkill" but please consider a more detailed description and more detailed explanation of your procedures. This also helps "protect" you in case of a complaint.

I put the stuff in the e-mail twice Once at the top and then again at the bottom. Adding a second request did help.

Another funny story.....about once per month someone goes to the feedback form on this site which means they have to leave the BB and sends me a long and loud complaint about my affiliate program reviews. They think they are on Ryans site since I don't do this stuff. Hello? DUH! I always give them a polite reply and tell them where to go.



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Old 12-02-1999, 06:22 PM   #9
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Thanks also Steve_S !!! CooooL, Can't wait!
You guys are dee best! http://www.very-cool-stuff.com/ubb/smile.gif
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Old 12-02-1999, 11:29 PM   #10
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Jeeze -- you crazy webmasters! I have a mailing list as well with several hundred people and I've never received a single reply negative or positive. In fact, I've only received one negative email regarding my site in its entire 9 month history.

My conclusion: People who enjoy primate humor are practically geniuses.

-Monkey

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Old 12-03-1999, 12:44 AM   #11
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Heehee, chuckle....here's another example: I am using the Mailbits program for my page referral but don't really care for the way it hassles visitors trying to fill out a simple form ...BUT I just started making over $500. month from it so I am in a catch 22 whether to stick with it or not...reason being, since the forms are Prechecked for free offers some people don't notice it (actually a lot of people don't) and get offers they didn't know they subscribed for. Recently, I got a real nasty email from a guy demanding to remove him "immediately" from my mailing list and he would report me to my ISP. I explained the situation to him & hadn't heard further.

This goes back to what Steve_s was talking about with the free mousepads incident. http://www.very-cool-stuff.com/ubb/wink.gif

Sorry to get off track a bit....

Tina

(P.S. I wish I knew how to make my own personal page referral script with MY own offers in it!)
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Old 12-03-1999, 12:59 AM   #12
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Well I got my hosting account terminated and did not get one complaint for spam! I have this feature in my programming where I send out newsletters to all of my hosts about site updates, payout raises, etc.....

If any of you know about Hypermart then you will know what I am talking about. I guess they have thier servers configured so that as soon as you send out a certain amount of emails you automatically get terminated.

I called them, emailed them, you name it. They just pretty much gave me an "oh well."

So what are you supposed to do with stupid hosting companies??? http://www.very-cool-stuff.com/ubb/smile.gif LOL
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Old 12-03-1999, 05:10 AM   #13
Aaron Dragushan
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A quick little rant, if you'll permit me...

In terms of Joe Average users, there is a very large lack of understanding about how the net works, and how to play nice. It really stuns (and depresses) me when I watch someone click on a banner ad that says something blatantly deceptive such as "Click here to win a car instantly". Groan.

I have watched my friends do it! Aaaargh.

In fact, I read that spam gets a 4% response rate. That is HUGE when you think about it. They are sending it out to tremendous volumes of people... *sigh*

Ok, I'll quiet down now.

About handling complaints, I've become relatively numb to them. I simply transfer them (or filter by keyword) into a subfolder, where a perl script filters them out and compiles a nice email I send to the server to unsub them.

I get about 50 unsubscribe requests a week, and that's just counting the ones that are mailing me. Hundreds more are actually able to compose an email and do it all by themselves! Wow. I think the biggest hidden problem is forwarding. It doesn't get mentioned much, but here's the trouble: Someone signs up with a@blah.com, and forwards to b@blah.com

Now when they want to unsub, they write from b@blah.com, so it don't work so hot. ;-)

- Aaron


[This message has been edited by Aaron Dragushan (edited 12-03-1999).]
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Old 12-03-1999, 06:02 AM   #14
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RE: In terms of Joe Average users, there is a very large lack of understanding about how the net works, and how to play nice.

Let me second that emotion. As an instructor of such matters, its getting harder to get people to sign up for basic courses, since they think they already know it all!

RE: It really stuns (and depresses) me when I watch someone click on a banner
ad that says something blatantly deceptive...


Again, AMEN!

There's tons of chain letters and get rich quick ****s from back in the dark ages, (when I was a kid), that are now getting recycled. I remember all those ads in the back of Popular Science and Popular Mechanics magazine. Send them 2 bucks and they'll send you the answers to losing weight, making money, the energy crisis, you name it!

Sorry if this is just a tad off topic Arn, but, But some users are just STUPID! Its been going on for years.

Live long and prosper my friends. http://www.very-cool-stuff.com/ubb/smile.gif
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Old 12-06-1999, 04:54 AM   #15
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You know, when I used to get stupid messages, I used to go out of my way to try to help the writers.

But now, I confess I have become incredibly trigger-happy on the DELETE key. If somebody mails me on a topic covered in my FAQ or totally at cross-purposes, or (as often happens nowadays) the letter-writer has such a poor command of grammar and the basic concepts involved in stringing together a coherent sentence that I honestly, genuinely don't have a clue what they are talking about, DELETE.

If I get spam, DELETE.

Any message that begins "This is not SPAM"... DELETE (which is why it's best not to begin your newsletter with "This is not SPAM" even though it's true, because that's what real spammers write)

Time-wasters... DELETE

People who mistake my site for somebody else's... DELETE

Incredible thing is, even after all the hammering my DELETE key gets every day, that still leaves me 20-30 relevant messages every single day.

Before I adopted my shoot to kill policy on time-wasting messages, I *always* fell behind with my correspondence. Nowadays, even though I struggle from time to time, I am able to keep my head above water.

Maybe it's time YOU took a good hard look at your own inbox ;-)

Edwin

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