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Consumers’ Idea of Spam Could be Varied

A new research conducted by Q Interactive in co-operation with MarketingSherpa, a marketing research company, reveals an effective change in the way spam is defined. According to the study, the usual permission-based description of spam as "unsolicited commercial e-mail" has been replaced for a perception-based description of consumer dissatisfaction.

Q Interactive showed that 56% of e-mail users regard marketing e-mails as spam if they just don't find the messages interesting and 50% regard too often delivered e-mails from known companies as spam. Also, 31% of consumers regard e-mails no longer relevant now, as spam.

Interestingly, end users clicked for the "report spam" option for different reasons. 41% consumers report spam when they don't find the e-mail interesting, 25% report spam when they receive too many e-mail messages from the same sender and 20% if they receive too many messages from various senders.

But, many a times consumers don't understand the true meaning of pressing this option. Over half of those questioned, about 56%, thought that hitting the button would block all messages from the undesirable sender. On the other hand, 21% felt it would signal to the sender of an e-mail that the specific message was not useful to the recipient, therefore, the sender needs not mail the message to the address ever again.

Astonishingly, the survey further found that 47% of consumers believe that by clicking the "report spam" option, they would be automatically eliminated from the advertisers' list. 43% of consumers do not click e-mail links for un-subscribing from the list and simply choose the ISP's "report spam" option to unsubscribe. But, a full of 21% consumer clicks the "report spam" option to filter e-mail that is not spam.

But, spammers have several methods to trick the end users. Of these, the most malicious one is to compromise an active e-mail id and send to it spams. This way the spammer delivers his junk e-mails to numerous addresses in his collection.

Hence, researchers advise computer users to avoid responding to spam. Immature users only aggravate the amount of incoming spam mails by requesting to be eliminated from the sender's mailing list.

Related article: Consumer NZ Website Encounters Hack

» SPAMfighter News - 3/29/2008

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