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The W-Group Strikes Again

Got home tonight, had a lovely ham dinner, and settled down to the PC with a pint of beer in my hand.  I just about spit my beer out my nose at what I read next.  Remember that fellow Thomas Scriven? The W-Group spammer I wrote about yesterday, who sent me a pitch letter marked confidential?  Well, here’s what he wrote back next:

From: Thomas Scriven
Sent: Wednesday, December 27, 2006 8:09 PM
To: alecs@exmsft.com
Subject: Hey Alec

Alec, In accordance with my confidentiality agreement between our companies, please remove all reference to my personal information off your blog ( www.saudersblog.com ) immediately. Regards   
Thomas Scriven

The W-Group
1119 Colorado Ave, Suite 103
Santa Monica, CA 90401

This message and any attachments are confidential and intended solely for the addressee. If you have received this message in error, please notify the sender immediately. Any unauthorized use, alteration or dissemination is prohibited.

This is Darwin at his finest, ain’t it?

Time for a little education, kiddies.  Just ’cause you mark it confidential doesn’t mean anyone else is obliged to treat it that way, unless you have a confidentiality agreement with that company or individual.

I don’t want to be a jerk here.  I actually find the services he offers, in the Iowa 712 area code, interesting.  Moreover, his pitch — that he is using USF subsidized services to provide long distance for disadvantaged families — is even compelling.  And by focusing on the Hispanic market, who are historically the heaviest users of calling card services in order to be able to phone home to family in South and Central America, he may actually have hit on a great market to sell these services too.

Just find another way to reach the blogging community, Tommy.  Spam isn’t the answer.

{ 4 comments… add one }

  • Howard H. Thaw December 29, 2006, 9:27 am

    I am amused that despite the facts that the original e-mail was directed to “alecs@exmsft.com” [which organization or company is that ?] and that your blog header clearly states that this is “Alec Saunders’ personal soapbox on World Events, Canadian Politics, and the Technology Business. Ingredients include a little wine, and a lot of VoIP, you are apparently violating a confidentiality agrement between your companies? – which companies?

    All of this based on an unsolicited e-mail from someone that knows you by your first name, right?

    Isn’t your First name, Alec? or is it Alecs?
    Doesn’t the ‘s’ in Alecs (as in “Hey Alecs”) actually stand for Saunders – and the alecs@exmsft.com exists a forwarding address for ex-employees of the big “M” machine.

    Correct me if I am worng, but as anyone who was an early employee of Microsoft recognizes Alec”s” is simply “convention’ for first name and first letter of your last name ..

    Further ..

    Doesn’t a confidentiality agreement require the consent of both parties?

    If something is confidential, shouldn’t the notice be placed at the start of the letter/e-mail – and require that the reader accept the terms before reading it’s contents?

    As I read through the pruported Cease and Desist Notice, I wondered if perhaps you had received this notice in error, because the section of the note you quoted referred to a site called – “saundersblog.com”.

    Do you have any relationship to saundersblog.com?

    Years ago, I recall reading a great analysis of an e-mail disclaimer that can be found here:


    Vast collections of these footers can be found elsewhere – http://www.spudart.org/blogs/randomthoughts_comments/1902_0_3_0_C/

    Longest e-mail disclaimer: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2001/05/18/the_2001_daftas_longest_email/

    Most incomprehensible:

    Blog on …

  • Ted December 29, 2006, 4:49 pm

    he didn’t even spell your URL right. and it appears he’s using babelfish to construct his english, to boot.

  • Zachary Houle December 31, 2006, 5:26 pm

    But he got Alec’s name right this time. At least now he’s paying attention. (Heh.)

  • Jim Courtney January 1, 2007, 9:01 pm

    Ah, but Google “Thomas Scriven” and he’s only the fourth link that comes up (linking back to this post already). SEO almost at its best!!

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