If you and I were at a pub and this topic came up I'm sure we would both howl at the contrast between your situation and mine. You are receiving unsolicited emails from dealers who read your posts. I, on the other hand, emailed every dealer of a particular product line in the Pacific Northwest inquiring about upcoming puchases I planned to make. I received only one reply. Guess which one of these dealers eventuall got my business?
In my case I had already decided what I wanted. I just needed a retailer to buy the stuff from. These weren't small purchases either. Within a two month period I purchased a preamp, CD player, four amplifiers, eight pairs of interconnects and a pair of speakers.
I sympathize with you receiving junk email but am envious that dealers were making an effort to get your business.
Happy buying, uh, er, listening,
It depends, but members should have an opt out option (IMO).
Sometimes, a seller may have a special deal that he/she can put together for someone based on what was said in the forums. That could be good. Sometimes, a seller may have hard won knowledge about a situation that a potential buyer may not know (e.g., Thiel speakers may sound better with MIT cables and there is a 30 day trial) even if it has been said in the forums before. That could be good.
More often, I suspect, a seller is just trying to push their product. That may be annoying, but it is the American way. However, privacy regulations can be pretty strict and I believe that you may ask someone not to contact you again and they need to comply with that request (true for phone and mail -- not as certain if this is true for e-mail). This is a reactive technique that won't stop new companies from going after you.
The proactive way to cut down on these e-mails is for Audiogon to allow each member to opt out of seller communications. I suspect that a notice could be added to the e-mail screen for those who choose to opt out. That would allow each member to decide whether they are willing to pass up the potentially good seller communications in order to avoid the "bad" seller communications. Plus, it would make the folks at Audiogon our heroes. Great question. Sorry for the long-winded response.
I suppose virtually everyone who spends any time using the Internet has gotten fed up with "spam", so I certainly understand why you might find it irritating for dealers to contact you directly. Having said that, we need to bear in mind that Audiogon is a public forum, and only dealers have to pay to participate.
If a dealer has taken the time to research the posts and see who might be interested in his/her products, that shows some business initiative, and from my perspective is an acceptable practice. It is certainly preferable to the snobby high-end dealers who won't give you the time of day until you have given them a large down-payment.
As others have suggested, maybe an "opt-out" for A-gon members might be an option. I'd only be interested in using that option for myself if I were regularly receiving unsolicited sales pitches from dealers, which I don't. The only time I got a dealer response was after I put a "want to buy" ad in A-gon and got an E-mail from John Rutan of Audio Connections in New Jersey. John is a real audio pro, and he treated me so well that I bought some speakers from him, and subsequently went back to him with repeat business.
I agree with Sdcampbell. Anyone that builds an e-mail list from A-gon members (not easy since the actual e-mail is hidden until you get a reply from someone) and then uses that e-mail to send "this month's specials", or other spam, in my opinion is completely wrong. However, if a dealer reads comments in the forums and believes they have some pertinent information, that would otherwise come off as advertising in the forums, then I agree with SD that this is more showing initiative than being annoying. I also agree that if a user requested not to be contacted, or simply didn't reply to the e-mail, the dealer should take the hint and not e-mail that person again. I've only had one person e-mail me to tell me about a particular product. I wound up trying it, it didn't work for me, and was very easily returned for a full refund minus the shipping. Although I didn't care for this particular product, this person's business practice was such that I would do business with them again.
It is very simple anyway:
Weather you or someone else accept the offer or not before it's being advertised on the web. Sometimes it happens to find it reasonable and go for it and that's for you do decide. The main thing is not to think that you're saving him/her $2 ad fee:)
You're right being not the only one. I get it from time to time as well and deside myself seing nothing wrong in this situation.
I would prefer not to recieve email unless I solicit it. I don't care for the medium,though I recognize it has it's place.
If one dealer has sent more than one email, just block the address using your email application.
Would there be any way to block comercial users from emailing private users(of course this would be optional, sort of like having an unlisted phone number)? I do enjoy some dealers comments and input but there are a few who will remain nameless(they know who they are) whom find it required to tell me every week that my system doesn't sound good because I am not using there cables, speakers, etc.. The kicker is they don't even know what I have!! but they know there stuff is better. Keep the comments coming. ~Tim
IMO yes: dealers should be able to email Audiogon members. I receive them regularly & find them to run the full range from very worthwhile to useless. Overall these communications have provided some good information that I'd much rather be with, than without. The mails that I don't find useful - well that's what the delete key is for.
If you find yourself on a monthly newsletter mailing list that you'd rather not receive, simply reply back you want off the list. They are required to delist at your direction.
Tim: rethinking this --- I believe you're referring to the "Tek" situation, which I can certainly understand you not wishing to receive mail from this 'dealer'. Per S7 suggestion above, there may be a way to block reception from specific email addresses although I don't know specifically how this is done? Your application will of course determine the specifics required.
As a dealer, I would very much like to know if an Audiogon member does not want me to e-mail them. I hate spam as much as any of you. I do e-mail people sometimes, but only when I've read the post and think I have something to offer the person, or want to make a comment that I feel I can't on a forum (for example, I may know that a certain product the person is considering has a bad reputation with repair technicians, but since it's a "rival" product I can't badmouth it in a public forum). Frankly very few of my e-mails result in a sale, but many have resulted in friendly correspondance with a fellow audio geek.
Having learned in this thread that Tireguy and Unsound do not wish to receive e-mail from dealers, I'll try to remember not to e-mail them. But, it would be easier if AudiogoN provided some kind of "opt out" option as described by Sdcampbell. That would be ideal.
Duke your not the problem, of all the dealers who frequent the forums I enjoy your posts the most(I may have mentioned that before), you always share your vast knowledge with out trying to force any particular product- and if it is a product that you sell you make it VERY appearant that you sell it. I am refering to one dealer in particular(whom will remain unnamed- those who have experienced what I am talking about KNOW why I am complaining) who sends a never ending stream on nonsense to members who ask a very paricular question, and upone growing tired of his "game" you tell him to leave you alone and he starts to insult you and your system and makes the oddest analogies. All of that being said I recall talking to you(duke) about certain problems with my system and you ALWAYS help me on the forums and have never even come close to crossing the line- I wish other dealers would follow your lead, I hold you in the highest regards. ~Tim
Thanks, Tireguy and Unsound, for taking the time to reply.
Tim, you really made my day! Yes I have also enjoyed our interaction here, and I'm glad to hear I haven't crossed the line. I value this forum a great deal (likewise the Asylum), and come here whenever I have time to. Like any other audiophile I sometimes get excited about this or that product or concept, and run the risk of crossing that line when it happens to involve something I sell.
I appreciate your both posting your comments here.