AOL To Integrate Plaxo -- Get Ready For Plaxo Spam Influx

from the oh-great dept

Uh oh. For those who remember, the September that never ended was when AOL users were suddenly let loose on Usenet, and what was once useful, was filled with a ton of somewhat clueless posters who made it difficult to filter through the muck. Today, AOL announced plans to integrate Plaxo's tools into AIM. Considering the amount of Plaxo spam that already is out there, do we really need to make it even easier to bug people every few months about their contact info? Almost all of the Plaxo spam I receive is from people I do not know. I don't know why I'm in their address book -- and I don't know why they've told Plaxo they know me. So, do we really need millions of AOL users who don't quite realize that they're about to spam everyone they ever spoke to, and handing them a tool to do so? Update: A Plaxo representative has given an in-depth rebuttal in the comments that's worth reading. I still find the claim that you only get spammed if you're a "non-Plaxo member" to be a bit disingenuous. It's telling me if I only signed up, I'd avoid these messages. However, the other points made are certainly valid, and clearly Plaxo is making a big effort to deal with some of the early complaints about the service. The note also points out that (thankfully!) part of the AOL agreement is that the initial process of spamming everyone you know has been removed from the startup wizard -- so hopefully the results won't be quite so annoying for those of us who prefer not to use their service.

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  1. identicon
    Steevo, 8 Jul 2005 @ 3:17pm

    Re: Getting the facts correct about Plaxo and AOL

    That's really not the issue.
    If someone wants and needs Plaxo's service, and signs up for it because they want and need it, that's probably fine. They would understand what it is.
    But if someone like AOL were to plop Plaxo in a million people's lap, that's different.
    A million people who likely don't know what it really is and don't understand the ramifications of the thing they have just had plopped in their lap.
    The potential for the clueless to act irresponsibly is 1000x greater than if they had to sign up for Plaxo and maybe pay for it.
    You know how it is. "Gee, what's this? Notify EVERYONE about my new email? Wow, sounds great. Just click here"
    They should have to type all the addresses in manually.

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