A Twitter Conversation About List Rental

Yesmail: "Need an email list to kick start your marketing program? See Yesmail Direct's awesome promo for 100 free in your zip"

mihaisecasiu: "doesn't this go against every permission based marketing rule out there? some might even consider this as spam ..."
Yesmail: "these are consumers or small businesses that have signed up to receive information via email--All permission-based email addys"
mihaisecasiu: "whoever gives permission to perfectly unknown strangers to send messages to them must not be in their right mind"
Yesmail: "our email address data conforms to all relevant laws including CAN-SPAM. Email list rental is similar to renting postal lists."
jordanayan: "Your lists may conform to law, but u still sent me SPAM-no optin,-you are giving the industry a black eye and not ESPC compliant"
Me: "ROFL @Yesmail for saying "Email list rental is similar to renting postal lists." and touting legal compliance. Uh, NO."
Yesmail: "thanks @jordanayan, @allwebemail, @aliversion (sic) for your feedback! Glad to see folks care deeply about successful email marketing"
jordanayan: "We care, but you continue to send unsolicited SPAM that goes counter to industry best practices. Why not just stop the practice"

Allow me again to ROFL at the touting of one's CAN-SPAM compliance. (CAN-SPAM allows unsolicited email advertisements, so it's hardly a selling point to convince somebody that you don't send spam.)


  1. A large U.S. ISP (> 5 million mailboxes) is about to use my invaluement.com lists. In their last minute auditing of the data, they complained about a few InfoUsa/YesMail IPs being listed on ivmSIP.

    Generally, I've tried to keep InfoUsa/YesMail IPs whitelisted... but I didnt have them all whitelisted AND I'm seeing increasing amounts of UBE spewing from these IPs. Even though I removed and (yet again) whitelisted more infoUSA/YesMail IPs, I sent the mail admin from that large ISP a link to this post.

    In short, thanks for the backup.

    This helped me to not look so bad! ...and provided independent confirmation for what I'm seeing from them.

    I also told the mail admin for this large ISP:

    I recommend whitelisting as many ranges of these as you can (internally) because I can't guarantee that I might not one day pull the plug and remove all of those whitelistings and let the chips fall where they may. (maybe you can bring this up at a future MAAWG meeting?)

    What angers me about this situation is that

    (a) InfoUSA/Yesmail is using their size/stature as a way to get away with this... and it is a bit scary risking the legal repercussions from blacklisting IPs of an ESP this large. (a smaller upstart ESP couldn't dream of getting away with this)

    (b) I'm not so sure that blocking a few pure advertisements from a few legit companies isn't such a bad idea in return for blocking all the UBE from infoDirect/YesMail. I doubt any users anywhere are going to miss anything from these IPs.

    (c) because of a & b, these few legit pure adversements from legit companies are effectively "human shields" for the large amount of UBE sent from infoDirect.

    This is a very frustrating situation. at the moment, I'm giving them a pass and removing/whitelisting these IPs. But I feel absolutely sick about it.

    Al, I'd love to get your opinion... do you think less of a blacklist for giving infoUSA/YesMail a pass?

    Or, would you consider blocking them to be too aggressive for blacklists which see to have almost zero collateral damage?

  2. oops. Whenever I said "infoDirect", I meant "infoUSA". Sorry for the typo.

  3. Just because it may be legal (whatever this means...) in some jurisdiction does not make it right in the eye of the recipients.

    dnswl.org listing of Yesmail suspended, waiting for answers.


Comments policy: Al is always right. Kidding, mostly. Be polite, and you're welcome to join in, even if it's a differing viewpoint.