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I’m getting unsolicited bulk email from Care2 – how can that be?

November 11, 2011

Baseball cap with the embroidered slogan "cognitive dissonance"I’ve got a bad case of cognitive dissonance right now.

On October 18th, I received an email from Holly Ross, the executive director of NTEN, urging me to sign an online petition that was co-sponsored by Care2 and Network for GoodThe petition itself was hosted by Care2.

I signed the petition, and since then, I’ve been receiving unsolicited bulk email about a variety of issues from Care2.  I can’t get my mind around this.

Can it be that Care2 decided that signing one petition that they hosted was tacit permission to flood me with other unsolicited calls to action?  How can that be?

My experience of NTEN, Care2, and Network for Good is that each of these organizations has high standards of integrity; Care2 in particular has a reputation for managing lists for online activism with utmost regard for upholding the opt-in policy for bulk email.

I’ve written to my buddy Joe Baker, who is Care2′s vice president of causes and advocacy, to ask him to look into this, and will post here about whatever comes to light.

Meanwhile, I’ll try to co-exist with the notion that I might have received spam from Care2.  Perhaps I can parley my cognitive dissonance into negative capability.

UPDATE:  Please see the comment section below, for Joe Baker’s response, which I greatly appreciate.

ADDITIONAL UPDATE:  I’ve just received unsolicited bulk email from someone named Ellyn S. at Care2.  I haven’t been able to ascertain her surname or email address, so I don’t know how to get in touch with her to let her know I should be removed from her list.

8 Comments leave one →
  1. November 11, 2011 7:48 pm

    What a surprise! I agree – it is quite dissonant and causes me to have to ask – is there any chance you checked a box (or let a pre-checked box remain checked) that opted you in? I realize this may seem like a silly question, given that you are a leader in the Non Nonprofit Spam cause and are certainly quite aware of what boxes you check (or not). And yet… Care 2?

    Just checkin’… (a little humor there…) ;)

    (very little)

  2. November 11, 2011 8:05 pm

    Looks like it’s a pre-checked box on the signature confirmation page:
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/thomast/6335534312
    This is what I saw when I went to check out that exact same petition.
    The text next to the box says nothing about “receive” or “email” or anything, and it’s completely on the other side of the screen from the attention-drawing “Sign Now” button. Definitely sketchy and not best practices, but not technically “spam” either.

  3. November 11, 2011 8:14 pm

    Hi Deborah:

    I haven’t received an email from you about this, but did see this post. I’m very sorry you somehow got on to a list that you didn’t intend to sign up for. Care2 doesn’t spam its members/petition signers. We are very careful about that. We’ve ensured that you are unsubbed from all lists.

    Regards,

    Joe Baker

    • November 11, 2011 9:22 pm

      Dear Joe,

      You’re the best! With your reply, you and Care2 are doing a great job of responding promptly, politely, and appropriately.

      I hope that all nonprofit spammers will take note and follow your excellent example.

      Many thanks and warm regards from Deborah

      P.S. I don’t know why you didn’t get my email, but I’ll resend it to your personal address.

  4. November 13, 2011 2:16 am

    No, Care2 techincally does not spam. But, I really think that the way they build their list IS, in my opinion, far from best practice. First of all, being signed up for their list(s) is opt OUT, rather than opt IN. Secondly, the placement makes it very easy to miss.

    The fact that you fell into that hole speaks volumes.

  5. AlexJB permalink
    January 5, 2012 9:56 pm

    I’m intrigued by Care2′s response. Just unsubscribing you is really not what you were asking for, right? You were asking how it is that you landed on their opt-in.

    Do they not have enough interaction tracking to tell you how that happened, or at least comment on their policy for opting people in?

    I would definitely take a couple of points away from them in my mental tally if I were you :-)

  6. June 15, 2012 7:30 pm

    Do they include an unsubscribe button? If not, then they are violating spam laws.

  7. CarrieB permalink
    February 23, 2013 8:02 am

    I asked them to delete my account, they refused, it’s not an option. I asked them to stop emailing me and they kept spamming me for many months now. They are spammers and no one should ever give their email to them. I blacklisted them and marked them as spam and I still get a dozen emails a week. But at least they go straight to my spam folder.

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