How to Avoid
If you run an internet mailing
list, e-zine, or any other type of email advertising and promotion, this is
what you need to know in order to avoid being accused of sending spam.
First, consult our Spam
Policy and Penalty for information about your rights and the agreements
accepted in using our service.
information about how your email can be mistaken for spam]
What Not To Do:
- Do not purchase
email lists or so-called opt-in lists
from companies claiming to have "thousands of legitimate email addresses".
Most of these companies do not bother to check whether the addresses on their
lists are valid and hardly ever ask for consent from their recipients. You
will end up sending your mail to unwilling recipients and will be accused
- Do not send unsolicited
emails with an "opt-out" option
and expect this to legitimize your email. Users should not have to go through
the trouble of opting out of a mailing list that they did not sign up for
in the first place. Many internet users will also ignore the "opt-out"
instructions because spammers use these to validate the email addresses in
- Do not request
a receipt of delivery for your mailing list. Many users consider
this an invasion of privacy, and spammers also use this ploy for email verification.
- Do not use any
spamming or harvesting software. This includes automated email programs,
email address guessing and verification programs, webpage spiders, Usenet
harvesters, or any other unsolicited email software. The use of these devices
is universally attributed to spammers.
- Do not send numerous
identical messages. If you are sending out multiple emails, attempt
to personalize the subject and body of the messages so they are not completely
general. Messages that appear "canned" are often considered spam.
information on what not to do]
What you Should
- Always DOUBLE
VERIFY every email address in your list.
This means that upon receiving an email address from an online form, or by
any other means, you should send a brief confirmation email stating that their
email address was submitted, and asking them to confirm their registration
in your mailing list.
- Keep track of
where you receive every email address on your list. This way, if
there is ever a dispute or complaint, you can provide your members with a
complete history of their subscription. When you keep track of where each
email address came from, you can identify where the "dirty" source
was, and cease to use it.
- Keep your mailing
list up to date.
Make requested contact changes promptly, and do requested removals immediately.
- Place a subscription
form on your website and other company documents. This method will
most likely produce a large percentage of usable, and receptive email addresses.
- Personalize the
subject and body of your emails. Although this may take more time,
it adds a level of credibility and professionalizm that will set you apart
- State your terms
clearly and stick to them. If you are going to send out an email
every week, make sure that your recipients are aware of this, and do not send
out any more than that. If you are going to be sending email about one specific
topic, stick to this topic and do not send out unrelated material without
Information on what you should do]