, , , , ,

It’s a spamtastic world. And I don’t mean the sort which comes in tins.

Today’s collection of junk email has revealed such delights as an offer to break the glass ceiling by buying a degree; to hook me up with local married men for ‘fun and froclics’[sic]; buy cheap drugs to solve all known medical ills; and to indulge in online gaming for a fraction of the usual cost. Along with the enticements to increase my size with surgery (no thanks, I’m on a diet) is an offer from Mastercard to get really fast credit.

When I get home, it’ll be to another stash of junk mail exhorting me to sign up to numerous charities, change energy supplier, replace all my windows and take out insurance for my water pipes. No, that’s not a euphemism – my water supplier is most concerned that I need insurance for something I most definitely don’t.

Even the government has got in on the act. If I have to listen to yet another recorded message about my loft insulation I will be sending the PM the spare packet left over from when my loft was fully insulated, several years ago.

We’re bombarded on a daily basis with ridiculous amounts of offers, deals, exclusive discounts and wondrous suggestions of ways to improve ourselves, our homes and our lives. Do people really, honestly, truly, fall for this guff? Does it work as a marketing tool? Do people sign up and click through? Ring up for a conservatory off the back of an advert put through the door? I’m not talking about the catalogues and sales fliers you know you are signing up for when you give a retailer or a reputable website your email address, but the general flotsam and jetsam of modern life.

I don’t know about you, but it makes me concerned about the gullible and the worried well. (And about the reputation of marketing, but that’s another story). I suspect it does work, to some degree. Because otherwise companies would stop doing it. And if it didn’t make money, then the amount of post my lovely postman has to push through various doors would drastically reduce.  His argument is that it’s keeping Royal Mail going, which I can well believe is the case.

Whether it is ethical is another question. Personally I see a real distinction between online and posted material. Online being ‘the dark side’.

Where do you draw the line?