A while back I agreed to beta test Reuters new Powerscreener tool for screening publicly-traded stocks. As part of doing that I had to give Reuters an email address that I check regularly. But clueless nitwits that Reuters apparently is, on Friday the company sent out a major email to all the beta-testers without using bcc — in other words, we could all see each others’ email addresses, and we could respond to one another. It was a dumb thing for Reuters to do, not to mention a gross violation of privacy.
And, of course, it has had precisely the effect I would expect. Having implicitly identified myself as being interested in trading technology I have been hit by a barrage of offers and enticements in the last twenty-four hours from a**-holes who were on the list and have decided that they’d like to flog their wares. Granted, I have many email addresses and this is just one, albeit one that I do use now and then, but I think Reuters owes me — and everyone they’ve just managed to wildly inconvenience — a very big apology.