NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Wednesday, February 1st, 2017

Tim Eyman acquires email list of Democratic activists, begins sending them his propaganda

Having decided he’s not enough of a public nuisance, disgraced initiative promoter Tim Eyman today sent a large list of Democratic activists a copy of his latest email appeal, which is for the most part a rehashed version of what he sent on Monday announcing his latest scheme to devastate public services, I-1550.

We know about this because NPI supporters have been contacting us all morning long telling us they got an email from Tim Eyman and wondering why, since they never signed up to receive any emails from Eyman or his associates.

We investigated and discovered that Eyman has created a list in his MailChimp account called “DEMOCRATS”. We don’t know where he acquired the list from (or whether he obtained it legally), but it appears to be of a substantial size, judging by the number of activists who have contacted us already.

It is against MailChimp’s Terms of Use to send people email without permission. Section 17 (General Rules) of the TOS states:

You promise to follow these rules:

  1. You won’t send Spam! By “spam,” we mean the definition on the Spamhaus website.
  2. You won’t use purchased, rented, or third-party lists of email addresses.
  3. You won’t violate our Acceptable Use Policy, which is part of this Agreement.
  4. If you use our API, you’ll comply with our API Use Policy.

If you violate any of these rules, then we may suspend or terminate your account.

MailChimp requires that people who import addresses in bulk tell MailChimp where they got their list, so Eyman would have been asked that at the time he uploaded all of the email addresses he acquired — but of course, he’s a compulsive liar, so it’s very possible he was less than truthful with MailChimp.

Eyman has relied on unsolicited email for years to spread his propaganda, and elected officials are fairly used to getting messages they didn’t ask for from him, but what exactly he thinks he’s accomplishing by blasting his missives into the inboxes of progressive activists and Democratic PCOs is unclear.

Eyman prefaced his email with the following:

Hello. We recently added a massive number of new emails to our list. Each week, we send out two informative email updates. If you want to keep getting them, you don’t need to do anything. If you don’t, the unsubscribe button appears at the bottom. Have a great day!

Sending unsolicited email isn’t illegal, but providers like MailChimp have fairly comprehensive terms of use policies, and Eyman is required to follow those.

We believe that Eyman may have violated MailChimp’s terms of service by importing and using a third party list of email addresses, and we’ve asked MailChimp to investigate and take appropriate action to enforce its TOS.

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One Comment

  1. Please do!

    # by Gretchen Anna Sand :: February 2nd, 2017 at 2:53 PM