Unsubscribing from Email

Unsubscribing from EmailI’m very careful about the boxes I tick when I’m signing up to a new service or for a new product. I’m usually so careful, I even notice the boxes that need to be ticked so that I don’t receive promotional material or sales gumph from carefully selected third parties.

If I receive some spam email from a reputable organisation, it doesn’t bother me too much because it’s simply a case of clicking on an ‘unsubscribe’ link in the email, which is usually somewhere near the bottom.

Today, I received an email from the AA, offering AA Dining Club introductory membership, which isn’t my sort of thing as I’d rather eat alone, in peace and not in a circle with a load of other strangers. I can’t be 100% certain that when I took out breakdown cover with the AA last year, I correctly ticked or unticked the necessary boxes to ensure that my inbox wasn’t invaded by boring, irrelevant crap- I’m only about 99% certain. If you’re bothered, you can see the AA‘s email here.

In fairness, I only receive the odd email from the AA, so I usually just delete them. Today, I snapped and decided to make a stand against unwanted emails so I scrolled to the bottom of my email invitation, just below the photo of a chef with pubic hair on his head. Lo and behold, as expected, there was an ‘unsubscribe’ link.

I clicked on the link and a new page opened. At first, I thought I was just being a little thick, as the page I’d ended up upon appeared to be a guide to making sure that emails from the AA don’t end up in my spam folder. Surely, there must have been some sort of mistake.

I went back to the email and clicked on the ‘unsubscribe’ link again, just in case I’d done something wrong the first time around. To my disappointment, I ended with the same guide.

Perhaps I wasn’t reading it properly?

I scanned the guide for a paragraph hidden somewhere, telling me how I could really unsubscribe from the AA‘s junk mail, but there was absolutely nothing. To clarify, clicking on the ‘unsubscribe’ link included in an email from the AA takes you to a guide on how to make sure you receive emails from the AA. Is it just me, or does that defeat the whole purpose of clicking on the ‘unsubscribe’ link in the first place?

You’re no doubt aware that I’m partial to logging complaints or providing ‘feedback’ to various people and organisations. I don’t do this because I’m a miserable fucker (that’s only partly the reason), I do it because I like to be a pain in the arse.

There are so many little, irrelevant mistakes which are made and will unlikely have a detrimental effect on anyone’s life, so people just ignore these little irritations. It’s as if these things are expected. All I do is make organisations or people aware of an issue, something I don’t understand, something that doesn’t make sense or something which is plain wrong.

In this example with the AA‘s email, I’ve been given an option to unsubscribe, so I’ve chosen to make use of that option. If the option isn’t correct or doesn’t work, it should be mentioned.

Plus, I like to be a pain in the arse.

You know what’s coming next, right?

Here’s the email to the AA:

When I took out breakdown cover with you, I’m 99% certain that I selected the option for you NOT to contact me in writing, by telephone or by email so there’s the slightest chance that I’m mistaken.
I received the following email (online version at http://niho.me/AAemail). As I don’t like to receive unwelcome emails, I selected the “unsubscribe” option right at the very bottom. This was easy to find and I know that it should be a simple case of clicking this link so that junk emails about unwanted services will not get mixed up with anticipated, expected and wanted emails.
However, when I clicked on “unsubscribe”, I was taken to this link (http://niho.me/AAunsubscribe). Rather than giving me the option to unsubscribe, I was presented with a long list of instructions on how to continue to RECEIVE spam email from the AA. It’s fair to say that this is the complete OPPOSITE to unsubscribing.
Please unsubscribe me from future junk mail and consider getting your tech guys (or gals) to fix the “unsubscribe” link, so that it does what it says on the tin.
Much obliged.

As always, I’ll let you know as soon as (or if) I receive a response.

Do you expect an ‘unsubscribe’ link to do what it says on the tin?

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