Those Sneaky Opt-Ins

Ever wonder how it happens that you fill out a form, opt out, and then suddenly you’re getting e-mails anyway? Perhaps Brach’s can show you how it’s done.

We have a sweepstakes entry form. We knock out the checkmark in the opt-in checkbox:

I have opted out
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But look out, I’ve not filled out the form correctly. I’m missing some fields. Fortunately, the application catches it and lets me know:

Validation message!  Woo!
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Good. So I click OK, and then the page reloads. It repopulates the information I entered, and it opts me back in:

Just when I thought I was out... they pull me back in.
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Surprise! You’ll be opted in when you successfully fill out the form even though you’ve explicitly opted out. That’s annoying, and I think less of Brach’s and its interactive minions for making me opt out twice.

Of course, this is only one reason you might inadvertently opt in. The other is that you fill out the form and actually opt out on the form, but the back-end doesn’t recognize it. Which is why I’m getting most of the junk mail I get.

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