Thursday, October 8, 2015

Epicurious Obnoxious Email Spam

Some companies have a lot of nerve. As some one who loves to cook, I went to their site and registered about a year ago, I don't remember what for. I also don't remember getting any emails from them until just recently, when they opened the floodgates of spam and started sending me email every day.

"May Take Up To"

I quickly hit 'unsubscribe' on 9-26-2015 and was taken to the following page, where it cheerfully informed me that it "may take up to 10 days" to process my request. At that point, I figured if they honored the unsubscribe request, then it would magically take the full 10 days.

A couple problems with the "may take up to 10 days":

1. They phrase it like some poor intern is in some back room somewhere, furiously typing all these requests. This gigantic corporation, owned by another gigantic holding corporation, is probably working their little fingers to nubs trying to honor your request. Yes, I'm sure that's it.

2. I build large, back end computer systems for a living, and I can assure you that the average database can execute a query to set some flag on some users account in closer to 10 thousandths of a second than 10 days. The computing power needed to set something a database is generally extremely small, even for large databases.

3. It seems a little deceptive to say that it may take up to 10 days, when they know for a fact it will take that long, because that's how they've likely programmed their system. I'd be interested to see even one legitimate case where it took less.

My guess is that 10 days is the most realistically plausible number a gigantic corporation thinks it can get away with. Also, companies that push the boundaries often don't honor unsubscribe requests at all.

Day After Day

True to their word on 9/26/2015 of "may take up to", they happily continued to send me emails every day:

Day 11, Day 12...

Who could have predicted that they wouldn't honor an unsubscribe request. Say it isn't so! I might have even read/liked some of those cooking tips if they weren't so obnoxious about it.

Ok, It's On

A company is supposed to honor an email unsubscribe request, at least in this country. A quick WHOIS check, and it sure looks like they are in this country.

I just sent an email just now to both email contacts listed for

What Next?

Usually the next step in my spam hunting is where I report back that the company eventually replies back to me, informing me that it was a mistake, and taking me off the list. Oops. Now, what do you think the odds are that they start honoring all their unsubscribe requests after somebody points out the problem?


  1. Same problem here. I just setup a filter in gmail to mark as read and delete. I can't wait for the class action lawsuit!

    1. Same problem as well. Spam filter in gmail is what I did too.

  2. Did you ever get this resolved?

    1. Nope, almost a year later and I still get emails from them every single day.

    2. Is there anything else I can do? This is ongoing and a few other sites send me constant mail, it drives me crazy.