DeafDigest – A Spammer

Barry Strassler, the owner of DeafDigest, an email newsletter, is notorious for adding people to his email newsletter against their will. He has been doing this for years, and there are multitudes of people who have complained about his conduct. In fact, FakeDeafDigest on Twitter (likely a victim of the DeafDigest spam) mocks the email newsletter because of this.

I personally have attempted to unsubscribe repeatedly via two ways: clicking on the unsubscribe link in his emails, and contacting him personally to remove me. All unsubscribing attempts have failed.

Therefore, I have now taken the step of contacting all of his advertisers and requested that they cease their sponsorship of DeafDigest. I strongly encourage all of you to do the same.  Spam is unacceptable and you do not sign up people to email lists without their permission!

DeafDigest’s advertisers are:

Please take the time to contact these companies and request they cease their sponsorship of the spam email newsletter, DeafDigest.

About A Deaf Pundit

A Deaf Pundit holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Public & Nonprofit Administration. In her spare time, she enjoys fantasy novels, gaming and wandering the vast Deaf social media world. View all posts by A Deaf Pundit

35 responses to “DeafDigest – A Spammer

  • ridor

    YES YES YES YES!!!

    R-

  • InsaneMisha

    Thank you! I’ve been trying to unsubscribe that a few years ago…..still failed miserably. So I kept ignoring those emails since then. *sigh* Oh one day I would be more happier to see it not in my email anymore..

    Go away, Deaf Digest and leave us alone!

    InsaneMisha

  • mishkazena

    one time deafdigest editor somehow got the mailing list of mwadb (metro washington assoc of the deaf-blind) and spammed the members constantly. after their requests to be unsubscribed were repeatedly ignored, one member reported it to gallynet, asking for help. few days later, the deaf digest editor backpedaled and unsubscribed them. i thought that was egregious of him to do that and ceased only after the spotlight was shined on him.

    but he kept ignoring the other people’s requests. this had been going on for years.

  • A Deaf Pundit

    I just got a response from the owner of Currate. He said this:

    No, he is not spamming.

    If you receive newsletters from Deafdigest, you can unsubscribe from it – just go to their web site, or email barry@deafdigest.com

    Deafdigest is a wonderful web site.

    Robert
    —-

    😛

  • A Deaf Pundit

    I just tracked down DeafDigest’s webhost. It is Ubiquity Server Solutions -Los Angeles.

    Apparently the link to their email isn’t working, so you’ll have to either call or live chat with them. Their website is: https://www.ubiquityservers.com/los-angeles-data-center

    EDIT: I found their email address. support@ubiquityservers.com

  • mishkazena

    robert, please reread the post carefully and pay close attention to the comments. by the way, you may want to reconsider your approach. that is, unless you don’t mind losing customers.

  • dianrez

    I’ve also tried to get him to unsubscribe me several times. All that happened was to get one duplicate issue removed. Annoying that his email junk is, I now mark it so that it goes into the spam folder to be burned before it is read.

    Barry, I knew you in college and am hugely disappointed in you for ignoring my requests to be removed from your email lists. Also disappointed in the quality of your content, which is neither useful, newsworthy nor professionally reported. Not to speak of disappointed in the methods you use to get unwilling subscribers, which in total gives you a shady reputation. But do you care? Typical of unsavory people, you don’t.

    Do all of us a favor. Unsubscribe people who request it. Simple as that. And upgrade the style of your writings. Trust us, we’ll be back once we realize the quality has increased markedly.

  • Disgusted Consumer

    That old bozo has been harrassing for years. I unsubscribed few times. Yet, he found his way back in.

    I just put it in spam folder and let it expire.

    Barry is stubborn fool and I lost respect for him years ago when I saw how he was to other people.

    End of subject!

  • A Deaf Pundit

    Strassler’s webhost got back to me and said they sent a complaint to him. I think if enough of us do that, it just might cause the server to pull the plug on him. If not… then I’ll look into what can be done with the FTC, etc.

  • beg65

    The point is he shouldn’t be adding people without request in the first place! That’s what sent me around the bend the first time he subscribed me. He did unsubscribe me (my email was not very nice) but he kept resubscribing me, and the “auto unsubscribe” address doesn’t work either. So I bit bucket him, but I’d love to get him stopped in the first place, I’m sure he makes some kind of money through spam schemes with this thing. I’ve sent email. *grumble*

  • tayler

    It’s required by law to offer a link to unsubscribe. This falls under Federal Trade Commission’s jurisdiction, and is enforced by the CAN-SPAM Law passed in 2003.

    I set a filter in Gmail to automatically trash his messages. Barry Strassler still wins because he’s able to advertise the number of email addresses he has. The more he has, the more advertisers pay him.

    Contacting his webhost may do no good, as he’s able to easily move to another. File your complaint with FTC here.

  • Andy Foster

    Regarding the inability to unsubscribe, read CAN-SPAM act. More specifically note #5 and #6 at this link:

    http://business.ftc.gov/documents/bus61-can-spam-act-compliance-guide-business

  • Todd

    A Deaf Pundit,

    At one time I had the same problem being subscribed to DeafDigest against my will. Finally, I got a screenshot of the “Unsubscribe” request and emailed it to myself. Waited for the next subscribe (which actually is the dreaded DeafDigest newsletter), then emailed Barry directly with the screenshot as an attachment. Basically I asked him why I was being placed back on the list when I unsubscribed on this date (I did this twice).

    After that, he did it again one more time (I took a screenshot of the 2nd unsubscribe request). I set up a gmail filter to look for “deafdigest.com” in the headers — “Skip Inbox, Mark as Read, Forward to barry@deafdigest.com“. I haven’t gotten one since. A search of my email archives show no “hidden” deafdigest emails. 🙂

    Here’s an example email I sent him back in late 2007.

    Hello Barry,

    Back in January 2007, I unsubscribed xxxx@yyyyy.zzz from Deaf Digest. I even still have the emails from Deaf Digest confirming the removal of that email address. And yet, that same email address was added to your DeafDigest list without my permission. By way of “confirmation,” I received the gold issue on 12/3/2007 for the first time since I unsubscribed in January 2007.

    Nobody has access to this email address but me, and nobody has access to my computer but me. Also, I know for a fact I did not opt-in, and this wasn’t the first time this happened with DeafDigest. I thought I’d bring this to your attention.

    I hope this doesn’t happen again in the future.

    Regards,
    Todd

  • Todd

    Todd here again.

    The gmail filter idea did not pan out. Apparently Gmail changed their filters since 2007 when I placed my filter in place — see facebook for pix of my filter setting for deafdigest. Now it’s not possible that you just blindly enter an arbitrary email address to forward filtered emails. You have to create a forwarding address, and have the recipient send a confirmation code to gmail (via your gmail interface online or via clicking on a link). Ugh.

    A modification of this can be done on your favorite email client (Thunderbird, iMail, Outlook, Outlook Express, etc) and set it up to forward it back to Barry. 🙂

    Todd

  • David

    If you get spam email that you think is deceptive or you didn’t subscribe it, forward it to spam@uce.gov. The FTC uses the spam stored in this database to pursue law enforcement actions against people who send deceptive and unsolicited email.

    http://www.ehow.com/about_6060548_federal-anti-spam-law_.html

    Penalties

    Each separate email violation of the CAN SPAM law is subject to penalties of up to $16,000. In addition to penalties arising from the CAN SPAM law, any other violations of the law in an email, such as deceptive advertising, can be pursued the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). A complaint can be filed online or through the FTC toll free number.

    Let’s bankrupt Barry the Spammer

  • trudysuggs

    Makes me think of a 2004 column I wrote about the sheer amount of money he makes…and yes, I did unsubscribe successfully (which shocked me at the time, actually–funny!).

    http://www.trudysuggs.com/2004/07/14/on-hand-with-trudy-suggs-more-ads-than-stories/

    I’m onboard with your wonderful idea!

  • Todd

    Not to be a party-pooper here, but if you read the CAN-SPAM page over at (already mentioned by the esteemed Andy Foster):

    http://business.ftc.gov/documents/bus61-can-spam-act-compliance-guide-business

    It specifically mentions this in the second paragraph:

    “…the CAN-SPAM Act doesn’t apply just to bulk email. It covers all commercial messages, which the law defines as “any electronic mail message the primary purpose of which is the commercial advertisement or promotion of a commercial product or service,” including email that promotes content on commercial websites”

    To wit, DeafDigest’s primary purpose is one of an informational email — one where he shares stories and “Newsworthy” blurbs about anything related to Deafness (and about him). He is not hawking products (rather his advertisers are — and the key statement in the CAN-SPAM act is: “primary purpose of which is the commercial advertisement or …”). I’m no lawyer, but I think he could technically get away with this egregious violation. He’s not in the business of doing commerical enterprise with us hapless auto-subscribers.

  • A Deaf Pundit

    Doesn’t hurt to find out if that’s the case. If we all contact his advertisers, the webhost and the FTC… we can, at the very least, put a serious dent in Strassler’s activities.

  • Anonymous

    Barry Strassler doesn’t do the tech stuff related to DeafDigest. He barely knows anything (like we knew that!). Robert Rademacher takes care of all the tech stuff for him. If you can find a way to put pressure on Rademacher, you’ll get this solved faster. Strassler will just defer to Rademacher on this.

  • A Deaf Pundit

    Well, well… that certainly explains his responses to me. Thanks for that tidbit, Anonymous.

  • Arista

    Hi – I posted your article on my tweets (with auto post on my FB account) and got a first response after 2 hours. I think this is affecting some Canadians, too. I do not know how widespread the DeafDigest issue is in Canada, and how the laws are affected between the US and Canada. Very difficult dilemma to deal with…

    Generally, I have been told that the majority of them (Canadian friends and general) have changed their email addresses just to avoid the annoying spams. It’s not just DeafDigest… it’s also the other website based in Canada too with an “open” directory. But the difference is with the Canadian website is that he did respect some requests and unsubscribed some of the people’s emails; but not others, that they ended up changing their email addresses.

    Good luck in getting this person stopped soon!

  • A Deaf Pundit

    Robert Rademacher’s email address is robertrade@yahoo.com

    Feel free to email him and demand he cease this.

  • Nameless

    A few years ago I repeatedly requested him to remove my e-mail address from his e-mail distribution list and he was non-responsive to all my requests. I decided to use my last resort on him by marking all his e-mails as SPAM and I have been in peace afterward.

    In addition, I wonder how often he is getting bounced from my recently-dead e-mail address cuz I have had a new e-mail address due to the switch to another ISP. 🙂

  • A Deaf Pundit

    Success! I’ve been removed from DeafDigest!

  • J.J.

    Yep, I marked it as SPAM in google a while back…never had any issues since then.

    But I agree, DD should allow folks to unsubscribe…..

  • Anonymous

    Lost in all of this is that we have Barry — or should we say DeafDigest editor — to thank for spawning the mighty twitter account we know as @fakedeafdigest. One of the funniest parody accounts on Twitter.

  • mishkazena

    this time i was unsubscribed immediately.

    his reputation is now in tatters. whose fault? next time listen to your readers.

  • ridor

    Finally unsubscribed! Whooo!

  • Jean Boutcher

    Barry Strassler is the deaf Rupert Murdoch. As publisher-editor of DeafDigest, he has demonstrated unshameful and unpardonable behaviours. Out of delusion, he invaded the privacy of my cousin’s school of which she is founder and director by asking her questions about students. With consternation, she refused to answer because the parents of the Hollywood establishment require privacy for their children at the school. In no time did I complain to a school where Strassler’s wife worked and told Strassler to unsubscribe me immediately! Before his invasion, I tried in vain to unsubscribe to his DeafDigest much earlier because he mindlessly published in DD a rumour that Dr. Jerald Jordan passed away. Imagine the shock of his wife and the deaf community. Albeit many offensive behaviours, he still runs DD. I think that he desires to have the power of controlling the media of the deaf world. So, I join you on the bandwagon!

  • dianrez

    Finally got unsubscribed, too. Let’s see how long it sticks this time.

  • browneyedgirl65

    Unsubscribing is relatively easy. It’s staying unsubscribed that has been much more difficult.

  • InsaneMisha

    I emailed to Robert this afternoon and finally got his reply just now that I’m officially off of the list! I hope! That better stays! I guess this email to Robert works than others.

  • A Deaf Pundit

    Well, from a comment here, and what the evidence is bearing out, Robert is the one who really runs DeafDigest. So it’s not surprising.

    He better not add us back on… or I’ll blog with a link to the FTC for everyone to contact. I hope you all have also contacted his advertisers to complain about DeafDigest. Because hitting his wallet will ensure that we DO stay off!

  • InsaneMisha

    Yup! I suspected all along. I’m going to hit on his advertisers as well to prevent him from tacking us back on subscription list.

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