you make the call!

YOU get to vote on my next step. Follow along, then make the call.


Back in 2008, I was using a third party email service for my audio’connell newsletter. It would go out to people in my contact data base and anyone in my LinkedIn data base (it’s in my profile that I may email you if we’re connected). My recollection is that this email system had an opt out option and I would update my system to make sure I kept out those who wanted to be kept out. Usually if someone on my LinkedIn database opted out, I would end our LinkedIn connection – just business, not personal and I didn’t want to risk erroneously emailing them again…marketing that angers usually isn’t good marketing. I think Confucius said that…not sure though.

Anyway, on this day in 2008 I sent out an e-blast with some general information, some family news, all very happy, positive stuff. That day I also happened to be traveling to family event in Baltimore. Before I got on the plane, I got an email from one of the e-blast recipients, a self-described voice-over talent. This person’s email message to me, laced with profanity, said I was spamming him/her, inferred I had a mental problem and that she/he was going to report me to my third party email provider as spammer.

It’s possible she/he also stuck his/her tongue out at me in the email but I cannot say that for sure.

Well this email surprised me a great deal because I have no desire nor intent to spam anyone and I did not recall receiving a notice to be unsubscribed from this person. Concerned, the first thing I did was pick up the phone and call the email’s author to personally and sincerely apologize.

I don’t recall the exact words of the conversation now but it went something like me introducing myself and saying I was sorry for the mistake and then she/he hauling off on me about me spamming him/her and her/his web expertise and how he/she was going to shut me down and she/he may then have called me some names and told me I was full of…stuff.

So…there would be no Christmas card from this person to me in December.

Oh and I forgot to mention one of the tawdry, naughty stories included in my offending newsletter was a brief story and baby picture about the birth my 2nd child.

Yeah, racy stuff, I know. I’ve toned the content down alot since then. Lesson learned. 😉

So off I go on the plane, landed, grabbed a rental car and was driving to my hotel when I get a call from the third party email company. Nice fellow but bottom line was he got a call from you now know who, probably made his ear bleed and because I used the LinkedIn list I couldn’t use their system.

OK, I don’t HAVE to spend my money with you.

I now use my own system which has so far blocked those few folks who wants to be unsubscribed (and I then flush from all my contacts when they do unsubscribe – nothing personal, just business; I’m not offended and I hope they are not either). So something good did come from this weird event.

Well two good things, cause I got this blog post out of it.

I went on with life, now knowing where a key pothole lay and how to avoid it. And I thought I was doing a good job of avoiding “it”.

Fast forward to…


GUESS who I got an email from asking me if we could do a link exchange together?

No I am NOT kidding. Mr./Miss Spampants emailed ME!

This is now the SECOND time in my life he/she has shocked me.


Should Peter’s response to Ms./Mr. Spampants be:

A. Gently remind him/her about our last exchange, advise that her/his bridge to me had long ago been burned and decline the opportunity

B. Not so gently remind him/her about our last exchange and tell her/him where to stick her/his invitation

C. Accuse him/her of spamming me, sue, win the case, tell my story to Oprah, cry on Dr. Phil’s shoulder then star as myself in the TV movie about the whole harrowing debacle (for which I’d surely win the EMMY)

D. Hit the delete key on the email, take the high road and not have any fun at all

Leave your vote and any insights as to why I should take your advice in the comments section below.

NOTE: don’t ask me to identify the person AND any guesses on the identity of the person in the comment section will be deleted.

Commence voting now.

11 Responses to “you make the call!”

  1. Hi Peter – What an amazing story!! I’d go with option A and hope that they offer some excuse for thier inexcusable behavior. Then slam the door in their face! HA!! Thanks for sharing!! 🙂

  2. Absolutely, positively option “D”. The temptation to have fun would be killing me as well but there is no point getting this psycho riled up again.

  3. Hi Peter!

    I would choose either A or D. Tough call. I would think A would be helpful for THEM, so they understand consequences. But if you think that would only be casting pearls before swine (which history has apparently shown would be the pattern), then definitely D.

  4. Thanks for the laugh. Makes your stomach hurt when something like that happens. I’m torn between A and D too. The teacher part of me wants to “help’ them, but the non-confrontational part of me says “let it go.” The nasty bee-ahtch part of me is thinking back on when I might have done something like this…

  5. Peter, you have enough on your plate rather than deal with A,B or C. Just click
    Delete and spend more productive time elsewhere. Just take the high road and don’t be drawn down into a gutter!

  6. A or D but D is the least stressful for you. He/She most likely say this post and got the message anyway.

    Nah, who’m I kidding?

  7. Well it’s fun to imagine somehow getting even and I like to see how some here in their comments were tempted but at the end of the day, it’s “delete” key day with a smile on my face as I remember my Father’s great phrase:

    Don’t let the bastards get you down.

    My thanks and best always to you all!!!!
    – Peter

  8. Dear Peter:
    My first reaction was D. But then I thought the “real” high road would be to grant the request.
    Psycho? Maybe…but who knows what was really going on with that person when the big upset occurred?
    Grant the request and move on…
    Karma eventually evens things out!

  9. Looks like I’m too late! I was gonna push you over the fence to do A. People still need to be reminded when they’ve acted like an arse, even if you do it nicely.

  10. Trish you are never late!

    I liked all of the options (I wrote them after all) but aside from getting a fun blog post out of it, I could just see no benefit in whacking this person over the head with reality.

    But imagining it for a second was humorous.

    Thanks for visiting!

    Best always,

  11. Mike you have a good heart. I hope this individual was just having a bad day….and extraordinarily bad, mean wacky-doodle kind of day.

    But the poison I heard and experienced first hand seemed kinda deep rooted and was spread too naturally.

    But maybe you’re right. I hope so.

    Best always,
    – Peter