I received an email the other day that went something like this: "Hello, A media site you recently visited would like you to participate in their user-survey. Your input will be combined with other users' across the country to improve their site. To encourage your participation, we are offering a chance to win one of two Apple iPads. Two participants will receive an Apple iPad 2 (valued at $499). To access the survey, simply click on the hyperlink below. We estimate that it will take approximately 15 minutes to complete."
Well, I know which media site it was, because I gave them a tagged (unique) address. When you send me an email to COMPANYNAME@example.com, it's not exactly a secret. Regardless, I'm peeved -- why is this media site giving my email address to a third party? Why is this third party emailing me? Where is the permission? Where is the informed consent?
I would have mentioned this all to the survey company themselves, but the email address they emailed me from doesn't seem to work.
Survey companies, I challenge you to get with the modern age. I understand the desire to do surveying a certain way, but whatever this model is, it conflicts with email best practices and permission. It's time to modify the model.