how to have a one-sided conversation, or how not to ask for a favour

A reader - or at least someone who stumbled on my blog at some point - emailed me with a request. When I replied, I received this auto-reply:
Your message to xxxxx was not delivered because this mailbox does not accept mail from the Gmail system. Gmail not only invades the privacy of its users, but of their correspondents. Please re-send using another service, or call or write.
This is an interesting approach to Google privacy issues. It assumes that other email systems don't glean information from users the way Google does. I'm not sure we know that to be true.

Unlike those old anti-spam systems that asked the sender to type a confirmation, this is just a block. Unless it's a simple auto-reply, written to appear to be a block, as a kind of protest against Google, while the email is actually received, and possibly kill-filed into trash.

Either way, this person isn't too concerned with receiving email. All my email accounts are through Gmail. I have email at both my workplaces, but I don't use them for personal matters. And I'm certainly not opening an email account from some other company to correspond with this person I don't even know.

The reader gave no phone number. Not that I would call, but her auto-reply suggests that option.

And she's asking me for a favour.



M@ said...

"Can you do me a favour and help me move some furniture? Oh, wait, your van is made by GM. I oppose their business practices. You'll have to rent another van for the day, and then help me move the furniture."

This is a real-world equivalent to what she is asking for, as far as I can tell.

laura k said...

Yeah, that's about it. Plus:

"Also, I'd rather not hear from you. I'll contact you about the furniture if and when I choose."

impudent strumpet said...

But...they sent the email to your gmail account in the first place, no?

laura k said...

Yes. One-way communication only, apparently.