Pinball survey email from L.E.K.


Hey @pinwizj ,

I understand the rationale for sharing the email lists with IFPA Sponsors, but please be aware that this particular sponsor is using old email addresses.

You may remember this conversation from when the topic first came up in October 2016. At the time, you changed my IFPA record to a different email address that I didn’t mind getting hit with spam.

Well, this L.E.K. survey was sent to the old email address IFPA had on file two years ago (before you changed it for me). Apparently, they did not comply with your request to remove the previous email address from their database (nor my repeated “Unsubscribe Me” clicks).

I’m not sure what can be done about it now. It seems once they get an email address, they hang on to it. But I thought I should at least let you know about the issue.


Appreciate it Eric. I’ll be sure to do a better job communicating the do’s and don’ts with respect to email marketing with our Premiere Sponsors.

We are changing up our sponsorship tiers for 2019 and access to the email list will now be at a higher tier. Also hoping to have enough funds to start a MailChimp or Constant Contact account ourselves to help execute this service on our sponsor’s behalf.


I don’t remember even signing up for an IFPA list, but apparently I did since I got the survey spam. How do I get off it? I don’t wish to ever see an email from any of the sponsors, and apparently that’s the function it serves.


I would think if you change the email on your profile that should do the trick.


See @ericwag 's post above, that won’t work.
The IFPA can remove your address from THEIR list. They can even ask outside parties they sold the list to to remove your address and it may or may not get done.
The bottom line is the list is out of their control now. Don’t count on being removed from every copy of it.


I’m not aware that I have a profile, there’s nothing in my 1Password, I don’t remember creating one, and I don’t compete or care about IFPA points. It’s honestly a mystery to me right now how my email is even in the database, though clearly it is, and maybe I even put it there and just forgot.

But I’m definitely 100% not cool with my email be given, traded, or sold to any of those companies. Is it a big deal that I got some survey spam? Not at all, not trying to be a drama queen, but now that I’m aware this is the practice I want out of it.


There’s no authentication on your IFPA profile. You can only submit requests for it to be updated at:


Your IFPA profile shows “Registered” with a green checkbox so you gave IFPA your email at some point. Just contact them and ask to have it removed:


You updated your profile on Thursday, August 21st, 2014 at 10:31am.

You included a photo to be added to your IFPA profile as well as your Location, Birthdate, email address and High Score Initials.

I’ll get all of that information removed today, no problem.


Oops, just sent a request with the form before I saw your reply, appreciate it. :slight_smile:


This has happened what… twice?

How often do you all get spam for everywhere in the world? I can’t believe people try to fight this as much as they are. I mean, I don’t give up on spam… but bothered by it coming from an entity I have a legitimate association with? No…

Random ‘buy raybans’ spam… yes. Because those people do operate like scum. Just because IFPA markets their member list… I don’t count them as scum.

Promotion is one of IFPA’s founding tenants… one or two emails over a few years is not even a bump in the road. I get more spam from my local CVS or whatever in exchange for a few bucks off.


Sorry, but you’re missing the point. The point is that those email addresses that the IFPA captured and have now distributed are effectively out of their control now. Already we see that one of the sponsors has further passed them on to another marketing company without any permission from the IFPA. If you’re ok with handing out your email address to complete strangers, then that’s cool I guess. Maybe you’d be ok writing it on the wall in the street too?

Many of us are not ok with that, and thankfully there have been laws passed that should prevent companies from distributing personal details with third parties without permission… But… oh hey look - it’s pinball spam!! :joy:


Ok folks, reality check here. You lose control of your email address the minute you give it out to ANYONE. That super-secret email addy that you only gave to closest family? What a shame your cousin just clicked a bad link and now has a virus rummaging through his address-book. Always fun sifting through a burst of spam trying to figure out which of your contacts screwed the pooch this time…

Not to mention the fact SMTP is not encrypted and anyone between you and your correspondent can sniff packets and harvest emails that way.


With that line of thinking, you lose control over all forms of information the moment you share it. Fortunately in at least some regions, legislators have recognized this isn’t acceptable, and require very specific handling of different types of information, be it PHI in the health industry, or PII in other industries. Laws have been passed that flat out disagree with what you’re claiming, and provide civil and sometimes even criminal penalties for violating the trust of those who provide you with information.

Just because you can take/do something doesn’t mean you’re legally entitled to.

This was true a decade ago, but if you’re still on a mail host that passes mail in plain-text under normal operation, you should be running as hard and as fast as you can in the opposite direction. SMTP with TLS is well supported and on by default for most mail providers. Many SMTP hosts will even reject the connection at MAIL FROM if the connection hasn’t been secured either via STARTTLS or a full SMTPS connection.


Let me know when you find a law that prevents virus infections :slight_smile:

As for Aurich, he voluntarily signed up for IFPA and voluntarily provided his email address and photo. IFPA made it clear several years ago they intended to provide members’ emails to sponsors. Aurich could and should have removed his information at that time, but it’s obvious he wasn’t paying any attention (not IFPA’s fault) and apparently flat out forgot he’d even shared his information in the first place (not IFPA’s fault).

I bring up virus issues to remind people that email is inherently insecure and not to be surprised when your address is compromised.

I work with PII/PHI every day and there’s a world of difference between that and pinball “spam” from a pinball organization :slight_smile:


Uhh… what? If you are referring to this survey… you’ve made another huge leap here. Contracting a firm to do work for you isn’t ‘passing them along’. It’s someone being contracted to do the work… just as you’d contract some admin to feed the mailer. Josh didn’t say the company didn’t have the data without permission. It was a sponsor using the mailing list they have rights to use.

And as for the ‘old’ emails… sorry, lists are usually accumlated and added together. Another simple, but common practice when you’re dealing with bulk data.

Welcome to 1996?? This is a concern… but an inherent one we’ve all been living with for decades as contact lists and customer lists are almost always handled this way. They don’t self-destruct… and sharing vs ‘doing it for them’ is the norm… not the exception.

Sure… because it’s everywhere and not hidden at all. You’re trying to cling onto privacy that simply doesn’t exist. You can’t ‘hide’ - all you can do is require businesses act ethically or within bounds with the information they have.

You’ll note I have the same handle virtually everywhere… I also put my real name here. Why? Because I’m not trying to fool myself that I’m anonymous or that I haven’t left any breadcrumbs anywhere. So just embrace it.

Yup… the new laws are here, that make you feel good, but really aren’t going to stop the spam, nor does it make it more efficient to go after companies who aren’t compliant… but hey, keep acting like that email address is some secret. Now go delete those 10 junk emails from your inbox that came in overnight.


Again, just being able to do something doesn’t mean it’s legal.


TL:DR - Laws act as deterrents - they are not prevention. They only work as well as their ability to be enforced. And reality is in digital data… there is effectively zero followup and enforcement. They go after a few ‘example’ cases and that’s it.

It’s called reality. You can legislate it… but that won’t stop it. Spam and opt-out stuff has been on the books for YEARS… yet, does the illegal spam stop? No. It only creates structures someone COULD be prosecuted over… but reality is you can’t do anything about it.

We create laws and guidance so busineses know how they SHOULD operate, but since we have moved to using email addresses as identifies virtually everywhere, it’s fools gold to think you will control who has access to it. From data leaks, to data theft, to simply sloppy practices… it’s everywhere and its impossible to go back to where it’s not.

I get the people that are pushing IFPA to stick to the new European laws… and I agree. But to think these laws are somehow magically reversing decades of reality on the internet and in the justice system… is just fantasy.

The reality in this situation is…

  • we all gave our emails to a marketing/promotion entity (IFPA)
  • IFPA came clean awhile back and told everyone here that they sell their member list for marketing

No one should be suprised when they get an email from sharing their mail with the IFPA.

Like I said, at least it was subject relevant.


So if I provide my email to the IFPA, I can receive important emails about state championships and other competitions but I also get marketing emails from sponsors. There is no way to unsubscribe from just the marketing emails. I feel like since there is no way to unsubscribe without unsubscribing from everything IFPA related, we should at least be able to see which sponsors the marketing emails are actually coming from. I think it’s kind of lame that they are able to pass it off to a marketing firm that can anonymize themselves.


It wasn’t anonymous… the dude stated his name, the company he worked for and why he was sending the email. If you needed more information you could have always emailed him back to ask. Or you could simply delete the email. And you can unsubscribe from IFPA if the sponsorship bothers you.

IFPA provides services to you in tracking your competitive pinball career. Something has to pay for those services. Would you prefer paying a yearly administration fee or receiving a few messages in your email box?