One of the joys of being freelance is that I get to do all that information-gathering and web-surfing that's normally efficiently handled by the Agency's Information department...or whatever the current name for these good people might be.
This is brilliant in some ways, mainly because I never really know what I'm looking for until I find it and because I've always loved stashing interesting snippets away for later use.
These days, subscribing to various newsletters about what's going on in business or branding or strange new media makes life a lot easier, too. Well, as long as I'm sitting at my desk, that is. I'm shortly going to be disappearing for two weeks for the first time in 13 years and I have vowed not to look at any e-mails during this time. And now, having coped with all those spammy people who want to sell me something for non-existent parts of my anatomy or offer me their entire wealth as a sixty-first cousin twelve-removed, I am wondering if I really need to wade through out-of-date updates on a new radio ad for the Fun 'n' Friends Mobile phone tariff on my jet-lagged return.
So I am going through a process of unsubscribing and weeding out. I'm keeping all those that I've paid for or may possibly look at, like Brand Channel or Contagious. But the rest can go, especially all those from Social Networking Sites telling me who's poked a sausage at me or that my "friend" Santa Claus is a 88.395% match with me on My Favourite Tiddlywink colours.
But, for anyone else doing this, be warned. A lot of these e-mails cling like barnacles. So far, McAfee seems to be the worst offender. Trying to unsubscribe from their pointless reminders is a task as difficult as finding out, definitively, How Advertising Works.
Advertising only ever works by consent
2 weeks ago