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Handling email and common mistakes made by those new to the internet and email

We often hear people complaining about too much email in their inbox. There are usually 2 reasons for this:-

1, SPAM, often due to the user subscribing to some "wonderful" service they have found on the internet, that offers something for free, it might be a greeting card you can send to a friend, or a tune for your mobile phone, maybe a screensaver or wallpaper. Not only do some of these servies harvest your email, they also harvest the email of the recipient. These emails are often the target of SPAM, someone trying to sell you something which is often of no interest to you, or totally inappropriate.

2, Subscribing to this mailing list or the like, that you have not taken the time to research, or consider, how much traffic there is, and therefore how much email to expect. Some of the better mailing lists actually warn you how much there may be on a daily basis, so before subscribing, be sure you know you can cope with that level of potential email

Now comes the problem, what to do if the emails are getting to much for you.

Well if the source of email is as in case 1 above, as in SPAM, you could stick them in your SPAM or Junk folder (Often these are monitored by providors, and used as the basis of mail filters), but beware your already a target, taking these actions wont get you far. Spammers will soon find a loophole in the filters, and your SPAM will again re-appear. Always be wary of any of these emails that offer an unsubscribe link, these can be used as a means of confirming the address that is being spammed, adding to its value to the spammers. There is only one way to stop the SPAM, and that is to change your email address, but even that is not foolproof, as often unused/abandonned email addresses are re-cycled into the pool of available address, so you could inherit an address that has previously been dumped by someone, because it was receiving large quantities of SPAM.

If your issue is with case 2 above, its easy, unsubscribe. You have total control. In the original email after joining you will often find details of how to unsubscribe, and in other cases it may even be at the bottom of the email. The most important thing "Not" to do with these email, if you do not want to read them, (and there are always subjects we dont want to read), and that is Don't mark them as Junk, or place in a SPAM folder, just delete them. There is a big difference between not wanting to read something, and it being junk. If you were to mark these emails as Junk, or SPAM, then you can have a severe impact on the owners of those emails, they can becomed blocked by servers, impeeding their ability to use the internet, and communicate with those they need to.

Remember your actions can have a long lasting affect of the ability of others to use their email.

FAQ answers attributed to Raymond E. Feist are copyright by Raymond E. Feist.
It should also be born in mind that the answer given was only applicable on the date written, and to a specific question. You may find further, similar questions, in the FAQ.


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