How to Stop Unauthorised Unsubcribes

Hi,

If someone (Person Z)  forwards a newsletter they received, to others manually,
(by using their mail client's forward button) - and the new recipient clicks
on the unsubscribe link, does it unsubscribe the "Person Z" ?

I "think" its happened to 2 people on our newsletters. Is there a solution?

Many thanks in advance.

Kind Regards
Sahar

MERCY MANKIND INTERNATIONAL 
http://www.MercyMankind.org
A British Organisation working for the poor.

Stig Stig, 8 years ago

Hi sahar, welcome to the forums!
You are right about this problem, and it is quite a dillemma. You do, of course want, to keep your subscribers, but you'll also want a single opt-out.

The only "solution" I can think of, is to make it clear which address you're unsubscribing. Both by showing the address near the unsubscribe link, and by forwarding to a page after the unsubscribe, which tells you which address was removed, and a single-click link to resubscribe it if it was a mistake.

Stig


The Campaign Monitor Blog – HTML email smarts to go with your good looks.
sahar, 8 years ago

Thanks Stig. My suggestion to campaign monitor folk is maybe they can place a cookie or a special email X header on the actual recipents machine (I don't know if the former is possible via email). An unsubscribe from a PC (to which the email is forwarded to) without that cookie or line of code can then be dishonoured. 

Apologies if I'm talking nonsense.

Dave Dave, 8 years ago

Sahar, unfortunately it isn't possible to set a cookie with an email (actually, maybe that's a good thing) because scripting is disabled in most email clients. Stigs 2 suggestions sound spot on to me. Provided you make it clear which email address is being unsubscribed in your email content and give them the opportunity to resubscribe, this shouldn't really be a problem.

sahar, 8 years ago

Thanks Dave. A silly question, how do I "give them the opportunity to re-subscribe"? Suppose, for example,  you unsubscribe me because I forwarded you my copy of the newsletter, I wouldn't know I was no longer subscribed (unless of course the system emails me notifying me of this (if this feature exists - I am unaware of it - I'm new!) . I'm not trying to be difficult , trust me, just trying to figure out how to do it , many thanks :)

Stig Stig, 8 years ago

Not silly at all, Sahar :)

Ideally, you should have this done with a server script, but here's a quick javascript that should work.

First, make a confirmation page, and add this code somewhere between <body> and </body>:

<h1>You successfully unsubscribed</h1>
<p id="unsubMsg">Did you unsubscribe by a mistake? <a href="subscribe.html">Click here to sign up again.</a></p>
<script type="text/javascript">
<!--
function getUnsubscribed(){
  var regex = new RegExp( "[\\?&]unsubscribe=([^&#]*)" );
  var results = regex.exec( window.location.href );
  var printMessage;
  if( results == null )
    return "";
  else
    return results[1];
}
window.onload = function () {
  var unsubscribed;
  if (unsubscribed = getUnsubscribed())
    document.getElementById("unsubMsg").innerHTML = "Did you unsubscribe " + unsubscribed + " by a mistake? <a href=\"http://clientname.cmail1.com/s/123456/?cm-1234-5678=" + unsubscribed + "\">Click here to sign " + unsubscribed + " up again.</a>";
}
-->
</script>

Note that you'll have to change the following parts:
Line 2: subscribe.html -> url to a page with subscribe form
Line 17: http://clientname.cmail1.com/s/123456/ -> this should be the url in the action-parameter from the subscribe form for your list.
Line 17: cm-1234-5678 -> the email address field name from the subscribe form (cm-something-something..)

Now, under Unsubscribe Options, enter the url to your confirmation page, and add "?unsubscribe=[email]" at the end.
Example: www&#46;mypage&#46;com/unsubscribe_confirmation.html?unsubscribe=&#91;email] 

I believe that should do it.

Stig


The Campaign Monitor Blog – HTML email smarts to go with your good looks.
JetSetStephen JetSetStephen, 8 years ago

I know I've mentioned this before, but surely the easiest and safest method would simply be to provide double opt-out? This would prevent all accidental (and malicious) unsubscribes without worrying about cookies, javascript, re-subscription or anything else :)


"Stop getting Bond wrong!"
sahar, 8 years ago

Thank you very much Stig for taking the trouble to insert the coding. I will
try and implement it today - really apprciate your help.

And Jet set, a double opt out sounds like a great idea.

Kind Regards
Sahar

MERCY MANKIND INTERNATIONAL   
http://www.MercyMankind.org
A British Organisation working for the poor.

vince, 8 years ago

IMHO, a double opt-out is best for same reasons as a double opt-in

- Vince

Stig Stig, 8 years ago

Single vs. double opt-out is a neverending discussion - both have pros and cons.

At the moment, Campaign Monitor only supports single opt-out, so for their customers, the decision has been made for now.

So the way I see it, the best thing you can do, aside from requesting double opt-out to be added, is to make the best possible single opt-out solution you can.

Personally, I can't see myself using double opt-out any time soon - my subscribers should only have to tell me once that I no longer have the permission to email them.

Stig


The Campaign Monitor Blog – HTML email smarts to go with your good looks.
vince, 8 years ago

Indeed, but depends on how you design the opt-out process.
For myself, I would simply say:

'Sorry to see you have opted-out of our newsletters.
This message is just to confirm that you will no longer receive any further communication from us, but also to allow you to opt-in again in case this was done in error."

Or something along those lines :-)

Stig Stig, 8 years ago

Sure, and until we have access to mind reading technology, there's no perfect solution. We'll just have to make the best of it :)


The Campaign Monitor Blog – HTML email smarts to go with your good looks.
kurtraschko, 8 years ago
stig :

Not silly at all, Sahar :)

Ideally, you should have this done with a server script, but here's a quick javascript that should work.

First, make a confirmation page, and add this code somewhere between <body> and </body>:

<h1>You successfully unsubscribed</h1>
<p id="unsubMsg">Did you unsubscribe by a mistake? <a href="subscribe.html">Click here to sign up again.</a></p>
<script type="text/javascript">
<!--
function getUnsubscribed(){
  var regex = new RegExp( "[\\?&]unsubscribe=([^&#]*)" );
  var results = regex.exec( window.location.href );
  var printMessage;
  if( results == null )
    return "";
  else
    return results[1];
}
window.onload = function () {
  var unsubscribed;
  if (unsubscribed = getUnsubscribed())
    document.getElementById("unsubMsg").innerHTML = "Did you unsubscribe " + unsubscribed + " by a mistake? <a href=\"http://clientname.cmail1.com/s/123456/?cm-1234-5678=" + unsubscribed + "\">Click here to sign " + unsubscribed + " up again.</a>";
}
-->
</script>

Note that you'll have to change the following parts:
Line 2: subscribe.html -> url to a page with subscribe form
Line 17: http://clientname.cmail1.com/s/123456/ -> this should be the url in the action-parameter from the subscribe form for your list.
Line 17: cm-1234-5678 -> the email address field name from the subscribe form (cm-something-something..)

Now, under Unsubscribe Options, enter the url to your confirmation page, and add "?unsubscribe=[email]" at the end.
Example: www.mypage.com/unsubscribe_confirmation.html?unsubscribe=[email]I believe that should do it.

Stig

I tried this JavaScript and it works great!  Thanks Stig. 

The only thing is that the @ symbol shows up as %40.  Do you know if there is additional JavaScript that converts that symbol?  Thanks!

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