Several readers have written in today after receiving a message from Walgreens that one of its e-mail distribution lists had been hacked by spammers. [More]
After Russian authorities started an investigation into alleged spammaster Igor A. Gusev, worldwide spam has dropped by a sustained one-fifth. [More]
In a shift that can be rationalized as environmentally friendly, Bank of America is telling customers that they must agree to receive disclosures, notifications, statements and bills via e-mail if they want to continue using online banking. [More]
A company called Solve Media is rolling out a new CAPTCHA interface that requires you type in an ad slogan instead of a nonsense word, reports AdAge. Advertisers are looking for message comprehension,” says the company’s owner, “And you know what they say, ‘If you write something down, you remember it.'” And if you force a customer to repeat your slogan during an unrelated transaction, does he resent you for it? [More]
The group Consumer Watchdog is pushing hard for Congress to establish a “do not track” list for online consumers, which I’m all for. I’m not sure whether releasing a ridiculously unpleasant cartoon in Times Square is the right strategy, though–especially when you use the very service you’re warning people about. [More]
Trance has a question for the Consumerist hive mind: Are you receiving more promotional e-mails than you were, say, a year ago? Not spam, but actual retailers that you want to hear from when they have a sale. Trance doesn’t have statistics for this, but thinks that she’s receiving more messages this year than last year, and has had to unsubscribe. [More]
Last month Chipotle put out a call for customers to forward 500,000 junk email messages to firstname.lastname@example.org, pledging to donate $50,000 to charity in return. Now the maker of foil-wrapped burritos has upped the ante, asking for another half million male enhancement and fake dating site queries in order to hike up its donation to $100,000. [More]
Google’s not the only company that wants to put ads on everything you read. HP’s new web-connected printers will let you send pages or photos directly from websites or phones and schedule recurring printouts from content partners–and the company is pilot testing a program with Yahoo’s advertising network to deliver targeted ads on those scheduled printouts. [More]
“Amazing Incentives For Select Toyotas That Will Not Last Long.”
Reader Maida did a spit-take when this email from a Toyota dealer offering 0% APR for 60 months landed in her inbox. Yeeks, talk about a syntactical pileup.
I got this spam recently. Looks like our spammer forgot to fill out his form fields! “Whatsup My parents are from #CSVFIELD(3)# too! Are you 100% sure you wish to get rid of this #CSVFIELD(2)#?”I love how vague and modular it is, it’s like spam madlibs! [More]
Assemblyman Paul Moriarty wants direct mail marketers to stop sending out those “free money!” checks that auto-enroll you in expensive programs when you deposit them, while a senator has introduced a similar measure. “Instead of relying on tricks, companies looking to sell their services in New Jersey should go back to the old-fashioned way: earning consumers’ trust,” said Moriarty. [More]
After we posted yesterday about a T-Mobile customer being greeted by pictures of topless women when he logged into his account to pay his bill, some of you asked, “What’s the problem?” Several readers’ stories answer that question. (Censored but not exactly tasteful pictures inside.) UPDATE: T-Mobile response inside.