Article Thumbnail

I Hate Email Spam — Can I Give a Fake Email When Signing Up for Something?

You can, weirdly enough, do pretty much whatever you want with your emails

Every day, my personal email is about to burst its banks with political emails that you’d have to pay me $50 a piece to read. Sleepy Joe, Kamala, some staffer named Jaime, politicians running for office in states I’m not even sure I’ve driven through — they’re all asking for my support and also a portion of my paycheck. The weirdest part about it all is that they don’t even address me by my name. Instead, they call me “Donna” or “Monica,” also known to me personally as “mom” and “my beeyotch of an older sister.” Basically, I’m pretty sure that at some point, both my mom and my sister put my email down on some political campaign sign-up. 

Rude, but it gave me an idea: Can I just make some knockoff email address to put down for shit like this? 

Look, I’m gonna vote for Biden. I’ll do what needs to be done. Maybe it’s important by some measure I don’t understand for these campaigns to have X amount of email sign-ups, but some of you border on harassment with how often you contact me. Perhaps a secondary email address could present the best solution. 

For starters, nobody is gonna stop you from putting down a completely fake address. As long as it looks like an email address, most online forms won’t know the difference, and it’s not like the people who stop you on the street asking you to fill out a form are somehow equipped with fake-email detection. I mean, make it seem more believable than “[email protected]” but nobody is gonna know whether you’re actually “[email protected]” or not. 

A better idea, though, might be to set up a designated email account for shit like this. Maybe you don’t want it clogging up your more-important inbox, but you might like to peruse a newsletter every now and then. All this requires is making a new email address like you would any other. There’s no limit on how many email addresses you can make through Gmail, and you can have them all linked for easy access, as well. 

Alternatively, there are browser extensions that will auto-generate a fake email for you when you’re signing up for things online. These fake emails will still forward to your real email address, giving you access to what’s sent, but you can turn them off whenever you want. This way, if your email is shared or sold or maybe you just want to stop receiving emails from them in your main inbox, you have the option to stop them from coming. 

Bottom line, you should honestly make a burner email. No one’s gonna stop you, and you can still throw those street canvassers a bone by putting your name and faux-contact information down on their forms. Plus, if you’re into less-than-savory internet shit that requires an email address, it’s a good way to avoid missing an email from your grandma or student loan issuer because your inbox was too disorganized. Unless, of course, you want to miss those emails. Your call.