Just do the thing.

Thursday, July 2nd, 2020

We gave some money to a public radio station because we listen to them from time to time. When we sent it in, we enclosed a note that said:

Please configure our account to receive NO email solicitations or notifications or, well, anything. Solicitations make it LESS likely we’ll send more.

Keep paying your fine on-air staff. Thanks for all you do.

and we got a nice note back that said in part:

Thank you. I have set the preferences so that you do not receive email or mail solicitations.

This afternoon, I got three identical copies at the same moment (1:09 PM) of the same marketing email from them. Now this is a small station and I know they probably have a limited staff and are trying to cope with working remotely and so on, but this is still annoying. Annoying in part because (as I later confirmed) they outsourced their bulk email marketing services to some other company and are probably paying them with our money to screw up. What can they do? Complain to their vendor.

As I wrote,

It seems like so much of my contribution goes to MORE marketing and MORE solicitation—not to the very real costs of broadcasting, like paying your on-air and news staffs and paying the transmitter(s) power bill. I sure wish our small contribution could be earmarked in that way. It also seems like the simple act of saying “please don’t keep us on any list where you will solicit us” is just about impossible.

It sure shouldn’t be.

This is true of major national organizations we’re very happy to support—not just public radio and television, but nonprofits involved in supplying food and health services and making sure that the bad guys get taken to court. I’d love to have a checkbox labeled “send no marketing emails and don’t spend a penny of this on marketing or development or promotion.”

Just do the thing you said you were here to do.