Don't send an email to confirm that you won't send me emails

Updated on:

I had to deal with some pretty terrible software earlier today so I thought I'd share.  I've been getting emails from my Alma Mater that I really have no interest in, so I clicked the "unsubscribe" link at the bottom of the email.

First, let's go over what I expected.  I expected to go to a website with either a confirmation that I was removed from the mailing list, or a button that would allow me to finalize the unsubscription.  That should be the end of the interaction

Here's what happened instead:

  • I was shown a page which asked me to enter my email address.  Seeing as how I got to this page from an email they sent me, you'd think they would already know my email address.
  • After filling out my email address, I see a page saying that I will be sent an email to confirm my removal.
  • I received the email which prompted me to click another link to finalize my removal.
  • After clicking the link, I am taken to a webpage saying that I've been removed from the mailing list.
  • A couple minutes later, I receive and email letting me know that I was successfully removed.

So let's recap.  After clicking the "unsubscribe" link from the original email, I received another two emails, had to fill out a form, and saw a total of three web pages.  When my goal is to unsubscribe from emails, sending me more emails seems like a pretty confusing response.  I could understand if they were a spammer and simply wouldn't accept my unsubscribe request, but they were clearly trying to accommodate me.

This is an example of annoying software.  We're trying to promote less annoying software.  If you want to see how this process should work, subscribe to email updates from this blog, then click the link to unsubscribe at the bottom of the first email you receive.  I bet it'll be a little easier than what I described above.  However, it will hurt my feelings if everyone unsubscribes, so I hope you re-subscribe after testing it out.

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