Cell Journalist gets into spam game

Hijacks rival customer list...

Yesterday we revealed that Spy Media had accidentally exposed all its customers' email addresses by sending a welcome message with all addresses visible in the To: field.

Cell Journalist, a rival site to Spy Media, got into the spam thing by pinching all Spy Media's customer addresses and sending them all an email.

The cheeky message suggested punters would be better off with Cell Journalist because: "unlike Spy Media, we respect your privacy and will not share your personal information with other members." Except of course Cell Journalist isn't really respecting anyone's privacy by pinching their addresses and sending them unsolicited emails. The mail purports to be from company president Parker Polidor.

So hats off to British, alright Scottish, site Scoopt.com which decided not to engage in such shenanigans - even though they too had the complete list of Spy Media customers.

Kyle Macrae, founder and managing director of Scoopt.com told el Reg: "I was signed up to the Spy Media list under a pseudonym and to be honest my first thought when I saw the email was "that's 1,500 potential customers, we should get in touch". But after ten seconds I thought that would be spam and would just annoy people."

MacRae said it was a risky strategy by Cell Journalist and their claims of "respecting privacy" were like the pot calling the kettle dirty. MacRae also said he had been contacted by a Russian company keen to sell him the Spy Media list of addresses.

Scoopt.com was first to launch the peer-to-photodesk service. It collects members' newsworthy photos and sells them onto media organisations. It has 4,000 members and is already making sales.®

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