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Google Junk Mail? Wrong on Multiple Levels

For months now I've been receiving these strange envelopes in the mail. They're from Google, and promote the AdWords service -- "Start attracting new customers. For free. Grow your business with Google AdWords". Attached is a business-card-sized coupon with a "unique code" on it that's worth $100 word of AdWords advertising.

Okay, but the problem is, Google's data-mining to determine the recipient and mailing address is utterly, completely, wrong. So wrong, as to make me wonder if this is really Google conducting this promotional campaign, and not some outsourced firm that Google paid but didn't sufficiently oversee.

Some facts:

1) I run a website called "PLATO People".

2) One of the pages on this site lists hundreds of people I have been in contact with over many years to do research for the book.

3) On another page of the site, I provide contact information.

It appears that Google is slurping up random names from the "people" page, and then merging them with the address it found on the "contact" page, and then sending out bulk junk mail to the resulting "person" at my location. Did someone think that maybe this is a business website, and the people names are employees or management of the company, and golly gee, if we just slurp up some names, and then slurp up the address on the "contact" page, why, we will have a wildly successful ad campaign on our hands? Oops.

Here's an example below:

"SKINNER B.F."? He's on the list (I interviewed him in 1987). "DOMINIC SKAPERDAS"? Yep, interviewed him too. The "La Jolla, CA" address and PO Box? All right out of the "contact" page.

B-but, why? How? It's so obviously wrong. How many millions of people are receiving these broken junk mails? Want to bet it's some vast number, and Google is throwing away a huge amount of money?

I've probably received a dozen or two of these envelopes, with random names gleaned from my "people" page, sent to my address. It is the weirdest thing Google's done yet. Kinda wish they'd stop. I'm not in the market for AdWords.

Thinking of posting a comment to this blog entry? That's nice. But please note: As of January 19. 2014, I no longer review comments. So they will never appear. So don't bother. If you want to comment on something you read here, go to twitter and write your comment there and just include "@brianstorms" in the tweet. I am no longer moderating the comments here; I just assume everything is spam and Intense Debate seems to have abandoned support for its product.

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