Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Email Addresses Held Hostage

Here is my new pet peeve. Places like Panera or Borders who won't give you their member discount cards unless you give them your email address. In the old pre-Ether days, it used to be give me your phone number. Now it's go online, give me your personal stats, and hand over your email address. I've even asked whether or not I could have the card without going online and filling out the perfunctory forms and handing out my email address. I was told a firm "no." "Well," I said annoyed, "I don't hand out my email because I don't want it clogged with spam," I reply. "Oh, we won't spam you," the gal says with an earnest smile. "Yeah, you will." And off I go. My son soon pipes in he will fill it out and give them his rarely used address. I smile with that Cheshire feeling that I got them. But the real question is why do these vendors think it should be quid pro quo? I mean really? And they always pinky promise not to spam me. The last vendor making that empty promise was Mac Cosmetics. Want to know what sits in my in-box right now? I just think that I should be able to get the coupon or discount without having to give them important and private information so they can gather every buying habit and practice I make. See paper will never fully go away if people like me continue to clip coupons just to avoid giving out their personal information. And P.S. don't tell people you're not going to spam them. Really? We all know what's next and it's not some nice little gesture of sending more coupons. It's going to be your promo for eye shadow ... full price sent to me ... every day! I'm just saying!

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