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Got two emails from AlphaWorks this morning... the second containing the following (emphasis mine):

Dear alphaWorks Community Member,

This email is being sent to you because we have determined that in a recent email sent to you with the subject line: "An Invitation from IBM alphaWorks", a scripting error resulted in your email address being included in the "To:" field rather than the "BCC:" field of the email. Once the error was noted, immediate action was taken to correct this error.

I'm surprised by the number of IBM-based addresses in the recipient list. Also, I'm expecting a small viral backlash as a result of what was more-than-likely totally innocent mal-configured mass-mailer gone awry. Although I wouldn't call this a true mass-mailing - it was simply mass-distribution of a single email message. In my mind, a mass-mailing (enter shameless plug-zone) would be what one of Clearframe's customers performed, when they sent over 81,000 unique-to-the-user HTML-based email messages. See, each message contained a unique-per-user coupon along with various unique contact-specific information within the body of the message - IMHO a true mass-mailing.

But despite the backlash, despite the possibility that some dastardly person could grab my email address from the mess in the To field... my feelings are that it was sent early Monday morning, the first in-show day of Lotusphere 2006, and nobody's perfect.

Nobody except maybe Chuck Norris!

About the author: Chris Toohey

Thought Leadership, Web & Mobile Application Development, Solutions Integration, Technical Writing & Mentoring

A published developer and webmaster of, Chris Toohey specializes in platform application development, solutions integration, and evangelism of platform capabilities and best practices.

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