SL for Nowt

Living a digital life with empty pockets

Hints & Tips: Removing yourself from unwanted notice lists

UPDATE: Click here to find out how to remove yourself from hippoGROUPS lists. The method listed below won’t work for those groups, so another tactic is required!

This week I have only had time to log into Second Life twice: once on Monday to pay my in-world rent, and once today. Because I am a member of quite a few groups and Subscribe-o-matics, when I don’t login for that long, my instant messages are usually ‘capped’. This means when I do eventually login, all I will see are the first 25 or so messages and inventory offers (because those are classed as IMs, too) that I have received, and anything sent to me or IM’d to me after that simply won’t get through in-world.

If you want to make sure you still get instant messages when you know you’ll be offline for a while, you can check ‘Send IM to email’ in the Communications tab of Preferences in your SL viewer (or you can log into your account on the SL website, go to the Contact Information section and check “I would like to receive offline IMs via email” button). This will ensure that any IMs you receive while offline (even when they are capped) and notices of inventory offers (although you won’t know what has been offered) will still reach you at the email address you registered your SL account with.

But there is a slowly-growing trend in SL lately, of some stores adding you to their subscriber lists when you buy something from them on XstreetSL, or when you receive a sample from them via DSN (the Designer Showcase Network)*, or even when you pick up their prize item in a gridwide hunt. The store owners in question seem to be looking through their transaction history and adding to their subscriber kiosks anyone that has either visited their store, picked up a hunt prize, etc etc. This isn’t like a Subscribe-o-matic, where you click the kiosk to opt in to receive notices from the store owner; this is done without your knowledge, and the first thing you know about it is when you start getting messages from them and wondering when on earth you clicked their sign, because you can’t remember!

*Please read the comments of this post, where Peter Stindberg of the DSN says that adding DSN subscribers to a random mailing list is NOT encouraged, and what to do if you think someone has done this to you.

Not every store does this, by any means, and you shouldn’t let it stop you from doing hunts, buying on XstreetSL, or joining the DSN. It’s a rare few stores that will do this to you, and they do it because it’s part of their promotion strategy. The trouble is, these sorts of strategy tend to backfire. I only want to be a part of lists of my own choosing, regardless of whether I have bought an item from a store, got it in a hunt, or whatever. If a store bugs me without my requesting it, I am very likely to make sure I never visit them, purely because they have annoyed me!

Of late, I was added without my knowledge or consent by one store that sent out a notice and a free giftcard every single day. That’s all very nice, and I’m sure that some people would appreciate the giftcard (although items in the store cost quite a bit more than the giftcard, so it’s not as though you would be able to buy one thing cheaply using it. And no, you can only use one giftcard per purchase, so you couldn’t add them all up and get something free, before you ask!). But in the five days that I was offline, this store’s two messages/giftcards per day added up to 10 ‘instant messages’. Since the average amount of messages you receive before they are capped is 25, that was almost half of my IM quota used up already, and on something I didn’t want and hadn’t asked to be part of!

I had also been added (again, without my knowledge or consent) by another store that sent out another couple of messages, so you can imagine that I was a bit peeved when I logged in today, only to find my IMs capped. I only knew that I had lost personal IMs from actual people because I had checked to receive them into my email inbox!

There is a solution, and a way to get out of these unwanted offers, but I have to admit that it bugs me no end that I am forced to visit these stores in order to do it. (And, on visiting the stores, I didn’t recognise them at all, so I knew immediately that I had never been there before, to click the boards and opt in, which made me even more angry!)

Hop behind the cut for the solution, if you are getting these unwanted messages, too.

First of all, you need to enable Offline IM to Email, as I detailed above. Either do it in your SL viewer or on the website. Then check the email account you registered with SL regularly. Eventually, you will receive an offer from one of the unwanted stores’ kiosks when you are offline, and it will look like this. Obviously, since I have no desire to upset anyone, I have blurred the store name, location, and the name of the store owner:

All you need to do is what that screenshot says: copy the link in the email to local chat, then open your Chat History and click on it. You’ll be teleported to the store, and you will either be standing right beside the kiosk, or you’ll see a red arrow leading to a red beam where the kiosk is located. Find the kiosk and, once it’s rezzed, click the red ‘Unsubscribe’ button on it. You will see a message in green text in open chat, along these lines:

[Object Name]: [Your Avatar Name] deleted from database.

Hopefully, you should no longer receive unwanted notices from these kiosks anymore.

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August 29, 2009 - Posted by | grrr!, hints and tips, second life

5 Comments »

  1. We do not encourage shop owners who participate in DSN to enter people without their consent to any subscriber lists. If you feel you have been added to a list simply because you received a DSN item, please let us know at dsnteam@cleverthings.info

    However please be aware that some shops deploy devices that add every visitor to a list. So make sure you did not get scanned by such a device.

    Comment by Peter Stindberg | August 29, 2009 | Reply

  2. Thanks, Peter. I’ve just started a blog (and a new avatar) solely for DSN, so I would be better able to judge whether that might be the case, and I would let you know accordingly. I’ll also edit my post to point people to this comment. :)

    I do know, though, that I had not visited either store mentioned in this post. Once I found their locations, I even checked my SL chat logs for mention of those locations (in the “teleport completed from…” lines, because I *always* TP home before logging out) and not once were those locations featured. So I have no idea where they got my name from, unless lists compiled by other places are being sold, as they are in RL. That’s a depressing thought.

    Comment by Mar | August 29, 2009 | Reply

  3. Mar,
    I’ve been muting some of these things I’ve received while online; will that work?

    Comment by Stephanie Constantine | October 4, 2009 | Reply

  4. Stephanie, muting them should do the trick, yes. But do be aware that, when you mute something you receive, you’re usually muting the owner of that thing. So, if you were to visit their store and buy something, you would not receive the items in question. If possible, try to visit the location and mute the object, rather than the owner.

    Comment by Mar | October 4, 2009 | Reply

  5. [...] & Tips: Removing yourself from hippoGROUPS lists In August 2009 I blogged about removing yourself from unwanted notice lists. This method worked mainly with stores that had added you to Subscribe-o-matics without your [...]

    Pingback by Hints & Tips: Removing yourself from hippoGROUPS lists « SL for Nowt | June 14, 2010 | Reply


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