Most people I know have more than one email address. I found the value in this years ago and have enjoyed a spam free life ever since. My primary email is for family and close friends. Then I have one for people I meet in my daily life. I have an account for the internet. You know when you join a forum, or subscribe to a newsletter; that sort of thing.
Hotmail is the lucky recipient of all things spam-ish, and I’d happily let it fill the role of being the great black hole for junk mail but now that my iPhone displays all my mail from all my mailboxes I thought I’d try reducing the amount of junk I get.
What I discovered is that getting rid of junk mail is like getting rid of a clingy girlfriend that will do everything in her power to keep coming back.
Unsubscribe. Every email has that word tucked far, far down at the bottom in fine print so small that it would make a cold war spy nostalgic for the days of micro film dots.
But, I was determined to slay junk email and slay I did… kinda, sorta.
While some places accept the inevitable that some people don’t want their junk email and make unsubscribing a one click process , other places make it more labor intensive than finding someone who speaks English at a MacDonalds.
On the Acme junk email; ‘Click here to unsubscribe’
A browser opens up to the Acme sign-in page; ‘Please sign in’
Uh…. I haven’t been there in years.
‘Forgot your password? Click here.‘
‘Enter your email address and we’ll send you a temporary password.’
I enter my email address, which the web site then puts into a database which is then sold to a hundred other junk email sites. Now I wait for the ‘change of password’ email. When that arrives I sign back on to Acme, put in my temp password.
‘Thank you for signing in. You’ll be taken to your account where you need to enter a permanent password.‘
Okay, I’ve put in my permanent password, now where’s the unsubscribe button?
Nothing. Okay, I’m signed in so I’ll go back to the original email where I began all of this and click ‘unsubscribe’.
It opens a new Acme window, ‘Please sign in.‘
grrrrrrrrrrrrr… I sign in where I’m welcomed to Acme and all the wonders it offers.
Where’s the unsubscribe? No button. No link. Hmmmm, FAQ?
‘Welcome to Acme FAQ. 1. How do I tell Acme how awesome they are? 2, How do I give Acme all of my money? 3, I want to give my private bank account and pin number to Acme, how do I do that? 4, My life is empty. How do I order the Acme newsletter?’
‘Click the Exit button to exit. By clicking on Exit you agree to the terms and conditions of all Acme policies including Acme data mining all files on your computer and selling that information.‘
Uh, where’s the fricken part about stopping the newsletter? I search. Noting in FAQ. Nothing in Help.
But, I’m not going to spend my entire day looking to get rid of this newsletter, so back to the account page.
‘Welcome to your account page. Please select an option. Edit email address.’
tap tappy tap.
‘Your email address has been changed to Acme_blows_chunks@hotmail.com. Is that correct?‘
Oh yes. ‘click’
And there you have it. Unsubscribed, more or less.