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RE: Why people can't unsubscribe

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Consider that there are more than 12,000 people subscribed to this list -
many through large servers. However, the number of those with problems
unsubscribe represent a much smaller percentage that I would think
represents a procedural failure.

"Unsubscribe" is a command used to trigger an action by the server. "Remove"
is an appropriate verb to be used in written English to the action in
conversation. Although I know that Unsubscribe is the standard for removal
from a list, however, I would never ask for help to be "unsubscribed":o)


-----Original Message-----
From: Edward Arrington [mailto:Earringt(--nospam--at)ENG.CI.LA.CA.US]
Sent: Saturday, May 06, 2000 11:24 AM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: Re: Why people can't unsubscribe

Perhaps we should ask a couple of people who asks to be removed the
following question

 "What kept you from reading the instructions at the end":
1) Didn't notice them
2) Forgot they were there
3) My server does not accept emails that begin with "admin" <that's my
case>, and I did not have access to the web at the time.
4) Got a little lazy and just hoped someone would automatically unsubscribe
me from the list.
5) I just wanted to frustrate a couple of people on my way out :).
6) Enjoy starting another thread about unsubscribing.

ed arrington
>>> ad026(--nospam--at) 05/06/00 09:09AM >>>
> From: "Polhemus, Bill" <wlpolhemus(--nospam--at)>

> Why is it that folks can figure out how to SUBCRIBE, no problem.
> But they are HELPLESS when it comes to unsubscribing!
> I've noticed this on every list I've been on including those I've owned.

I'm one of those people that believe that if a significant number of
people can't figure out the procedure then there is a procedural
problem. It's the interface issue that is broken, not the people. The
technology is our servant not the master.

One obvious issue is the fact that the unsubscribe instructions are
BURIED in the trailer. Secondly, have you noticed how many people refer
to being REMOVED rather than unsubscribed? Maybe the term is foreign to

Perhaps, a slight change would be useful (see below)

> *   Read list FAQ at:
> *   This email was sent to you via Structural Engineers
> *   Association of Southern California (SEAOSC) server. To
> *   subscribe (no fee) to the list, send email to
> *   admin(--nospam--at) and in the body of the message type
> *   "join seaint" (no quotes). For questions, send
> *   email to seaint-ad(--nospam--at) Remember, any email you
> *   send to the list is public domain and may be re-posted
> *   without your permission. Make sure you visit our web
> *   site at:

Paul Ransom, P. Eng.
Burlington, Ontario, Canada
<mailto:ad026(--nospam--at)> <>