CHOICE membership

The UNSUBSCRIBE from email notice

My wife bought some shoes about 6 weeks before Christmas. Since then we’ve been getting emails from shoe one company after another. It seem you unsubscribe on one, but another pops up—yes, the proverbial can of worms.

However, this one from Colorado makes unsubscribing a challenge. Here’s the email header -

[NOTE - My email address has been deleted for privacy reasons]

Now, I clicked on UNSUBSCRIBE, and here’s what I got –

The answer options do not match the questions. Reminds me of that decades old line by the prosecutor to the defendant, “Have you stopped beating your wife?”

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Somehow we got on the Kogan mailing list…hhhmmmm…

The spam email has an Unsubscribe button on it but to ‘manage ones preferences’ in relation to their spam emails, one needs to set up an account with the same email address and then change settings when logged in…giving Kogan value personal information in the process.

We instead send them an email using the details on their website ‘contact us’ as asked politely for them to unsubscribe us, otherwise we would be reporting them for spam emails. Soon after sending the email, we received a confirmation email advising the change could take up to 48 hours.

Unsubscribing from a Australian business email list should involve a quick click rather than setting up an account to unsubscribe and/oe sending a specific email to remove from a spam list.

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Reminds me of Hotel California- you can check out any time, but you can never leave!

I’d be phoning them and insisting they unsubscribe you, since that page does not give you that option!

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And when “Unsubscribe” doesnt work, junk everything that comes from them.

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I just use a disposible email address when dealing with most businesses. If I start getting Spam I then know which business lost control of my email address, I advise them that I am now getting Spam and that they may have been breached by hackers after which I dispose of the email address. No more Spam after that from that email address. Of course on some sites they don’t like disposable addresses and I weigh up how much I am willing to risk Spam starting to come from that sign up. I also use email filtering to junk anything obviously Spam (filtering includes using Spam Assassin) as I have had some email addresses for many years and the longer you have one the more likely you are to have it misused due to breaches.

Unsubscribe links I treat most with suspicion unless I know that it is a company I have been dealing with, random ones ie no relationship beyond the errant email I do not click, I delete the message (taking action as per above). If not one that is a disposable address the sender is added to my filtering rules using address, or phrases they use or similar to ensure the emails are junked rather than reaching my inbox.

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Hmm … you response is quite helpful. So too other responses. Tell me - is a temporary email one that you set up under one of the web sites, eg gmail etc?

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Sure you can do that, gmail is very flexible re email addresses and creating sort of disposable ones by using variations on your address. To do this you use your email address name eg myaddress then adding a + then what text you want to identify the address you are using it for eg hotelscombined so you end up with youraddress+hotelscombined@gmail.com (this is a sham address just to show usage). Then set up a filter in gmail to capture that address when it appears and direct it to whatever folder you would like it to be sent to eg junk, bin, or a specific folder you may wish to create. Though Gmail allows you to easily select the filter “Skip the Inbox (Archive it)” tick box for the address you created.

I prefer to use Abine’s Blur for my disposable addresses just using their free account. It is also available for Smartphones. It allows in the free version for you to generate unlimited disposable addresses (that do not expire until you delete or block them) plus will generate and remember passwords and logins for you if you wish to use that part. I use blocking sometimes instead of deletion if it is a site that addresses the problem issue or is one I want to limit when I receive emails from them. Deletion is permanent removal of the address.

An important note about Blur disposable addresses is that there is no compromise of my “real” email address…as an example of one of my older and blocked email addresses is qltg5l582hre@opayq.com (they now use blurme.com instead of opayq.com), as you can see no one can detect what my real email address is whereas with the gmail one anything before the + is the real address of your account.

A snip of the part of the pages of the contact control of Blur for my addresses:

There are other providers of disposable addresses, with some generating the address for only a short period, others allowing semi-permanent ones like Abine do.

https://temp-mail.org/en/ is definetly a temporary address provider

On Github a user has provided a very long list but I cannot swear to the safety or accuracy of most of the sites they list (use any of at your own risk after careful study of their credentials & usage terms and limits) https://gist.github.com/michenriksen/8710649

Originally a 2012 list but updated to 2017 so most should still be operating can be found at https://www.ghacks.net/2012/05/31/the-ultimate-disposable-email-provider-list-2012/

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Thankyou - most helpful.

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Went to the US in 2017 - bought a tourist SIM from T-Mobile that lasted for 3 weeks (perfect timing) because we hired a car and needed it for navigation. I made the mistake of giving my email address (which they did not need) and since then I have been receiving lots of emails from legitimate US businesses. If in this situation again I will give a fake email address.

Gmail does a great job of sorting spam from the real stuff and at the moment I’m not getting a lot of “you have a trunk full of cash waiting for you in Dallas” (which I did for a while) but I am getting “thanks for joining pornhub, click here to unsubscribe”. Frustrating but manageable.

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I have been loath to click on the unsubscribe in the emails from Kogan

  • because I never subscribed, and
  • because I don’t trust that link (or any of their links)

So I think the advice to ring them to tell them to stop sending emails is a good suggestion.

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Gmail gives you an option for them to do the unsubscribing for you when you direct a message to spam

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That would be really funny, except it isn’t. I have a set of secondary email accounts that I use for just these occasions when retailers or online sites want an email address. If they prove bothersome I delete that email address and start a new one. Problem solved.

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And what about those that don’t include an ‘unsubscribe’ button and no email address to send an unsubscribe request? Blocking doesn’t help either beause they jusyt change the URL!

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Filtering for the subject heading & phrases they use is a reasonably effective technique. Just direct the emails captured by the filter/s to the junk folder rather than to the bin so you can check you haven’t captured a legit email. Filtering this way doesn’t require a huge block list for ever changing addresses. Over time you will have built a very effective strainer/sieve to stop the rubbish ones getting to your inbox. There is also using spam systems like SpamAssassin but they can take a bit more work than a normal user has the skill for. Mozilla Thunderbird also allows for each individual email account you set up to allow SpamAssassin or a selection of others to carry out some spam filtering before you have to filter yourself.

Another option is to use the Thunderbird Email Client and train it to sort your junk emails. This requires a bit of work initially to get the filtering trained but within a week or two it should be doing a fairly good job. Then it just needs a bit of easy to do weekly maintenance of mostly marking a small number of emails that are good ones as good ones. There is advice on this in the link about “train it to sort your junk emails”.

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I have occasionally bought things from Kogan, and learned that whenever I do my name gets put back on the mailing list.

The law requires unsubscription to be a simple option.

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