Shouldn’t I Be More Suspicious?

Blog comment spam is one thing, but when you get an email like:

Hello Alan,

I’ve been reading Cogdogblog and I love the work you are putting out.

My name is Xxxxx xxxxxx. I work with Xxxx XXXXX Xxxx in Xxxxxx, Xxxxx.

I would love the opportunity to chat with you about potential partnership opportunities. We are always looking for new ways to raise awareness and engage new audiences. This could be a great way for us to come together to spread the word about issues we both care about.


It ought to seem genuine. Wow, this person is a long time blog reader? Wow, they are with some cool company in Xxxxxx. Might be my big breal!

Hold the bus!

The writer’s job title is something like “Viral Media Outreach”. Makes me a bit suspicious… Hmm… And yeah, I del.icio.us tagged something from the same outfit just 4 days ago. Is that how long they’ve been CDB readers?

I could be totally wrong and eat crow, but you gott squint at the stuff between and under the lines.

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An early 90s builder of the web and blogging Alan Levine barks at CogDogBlog.com on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person.


  1. I got the same exact “form-mail” email myself Alan. I don’t think that it’s suspicious so far as it’s legitimacy is concerned; I got that impression that they were legitimately trying to disguise a press release/information awareness e-mail as a “hey, how’s it going” e-mail. Pretty shameless when the thing reads like an activist pamphlet and is several paragraphs long.

    It is suspicious on whether or not they’ve been reading my blog. I mean, the easiest way to suck up to anyone writing in the public realm is to say I’ve been reading and love your magazine/blog/articles. Without actually praising anything specific that I’ve written, I feel that this “Viral Media Outlet” person seems like nothing more than an “Old, Tired, Last Century Media Outlet” person that doesn’t really understand the connections that make blogging so popular and viral. OR, it’s such an intern that’s been told to send out as many e-mails as possible, rather than seek out appropriate avenues for their news/wares.

  2. Thanks for confirming Beth, exactly what I was fishing to find. After I clicked “publish” I thought, “Wow, you are acting like such a prima donna hot head, what if the email was a one off legit reach out?”

    It’s not quite as shameful as other things I have seen, at the same time, there is a taste of slime I cannot shake. Which is too bad, as I liked the efforts of the company Mr Viral Media was pushing.

    I’ve been reading about people who will Digg for Dollars; I am not ready to Blog for Flattery (that might be a lie!)

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