Email blunders & flame mail frenzies
Examples of how not to contact journalists, opinion formers
(or anyone else, for that matter) by email... unless you wish
to engender an unexpected response.
WHEN SPAM MAIL GETS TEMPERS RISING
To provide the background on this example, the Annoyed
Recipient was one of numerous people (opinion formers, mainly)
who had been added to an email discussion list without their
permission. An error subsequently occurred with the list's
unsubscribe mechanism, meaning that all the recipients received
each other's flame mails (around 100 in total during one morning).
The person behind the list - let's call him Hapless Spammer
- did nothing to alleviate the recipients' hot tempers with
his flippant response to their concerns. The moral of the
story is: use permission marketing only and test out your
list server before you add the recipients.
From: Annoyed Recipient
To: "'Hapless Spammer'"
Subject: RE: [100 unsolicited spam messages sent through disussion
"B" I do not know you, after this I am not that
keen in doing so in the future. My e-mail is jammed and you
have the gall to send out some pompous sh*t about sharing
with creative people, if THIS is an example of your creativity
you can stuff it back up your fat *rse from whence it came,
you appallingly selp absorbed psuedo-superior bag of steaming
From: Hapless Spammer
Subject: settle down relax -you can automatically unsubscribe
There are many people on this list who want to be networked,
the are a few of you that don't. - the list has been created
to filter out those that do from those that don't. There are
two more stages to this filtering process. By ignoring the
simple step of Returning a blank email to smartgtoups, you
are creating your own "feedback" situation, the one that you
are complaining about. Relax, this group will sort itself
out and you will, if you stay in the group, be able to reap
the rewards of networking with a large number of highly creative
THE IMPORTANCE OF NOT BEING TOO EARNEST
The following correspondence occurred when the member
of a community group appealed for members of a business-oriented
local list server to help with a voluntary project. Perhaps
he was a touch too earnest. This example also demonstrates
the need to make sure your spellink is done propa, like.
From: List Server Member
Subject: RE: Hello/ Information, Edcation, Liberation
Is there a similar event for us "non right on" capitalist
b*stards who are in this game purely to extract as much money
as possible from our clients, and who would sell our souls
to the highest bidder?
p.s. Education has a 'u' in it ...
From: Community Organisation Member
Subject: Hello/ Information, Edcation, Liberation
Hello. My name's John Doe and I work at a Local Community
Group. [snip] You are invited to a public meeting to discuss
the creation of a Local Community Information Network.
Over the past few months people from the Black & Minority
Ethnic Community Partnership, Local Council, Local Voluntary
Sector Forum, Common Sense Charity, Local County Council Library
Service, Gay & Lesbian Arts & Media, Local Community Internet
Project, the Working Together Project and the Local University
have been meeting to discuss how best to improve access to
and the quality of "community information". [snip]
Based on research and needs identified by local people we
believe a Community Information Network could seek to:
· Provide mutual support for any group or organisation that
provides information for and with communities
· Improve the quality of information available to all residents
of the local area
· Encourage good practice in the use of new technology
· Maximise existing resources within the Voluntary, Public
& Private Sectors
· Create a dynamic strategic alliance involving community
activists, information providers & policy makers
· Be a positive learning experience for all involved
We want to know what you think... [snip]
The meeting is free and open to anyone who wishes to attend.
EXPENSES To ensure our event is accessible to all members
of our communities volunteers travel & childcare expenses
will be paid. INTERPRETERS Interpreters & signers are available
if you let us know in advance.
FOOD All food will be vegetarian, but please let us know of
any special dietary needs you may have and we will try to
OTHER SPECIAL NEEDS Please let us know if you have any other
needs that we may be able to help with. [snip]