The DMA: Spamming Job Services to a Purchased List

The United States’ Direct Marketing Association (or DMA) spammed what appears to have been a purchased list yesterday morning. The email claims that the recipients of the email had expressed interest in the DMA, but it was sent to email addresses that never existed and were not likely typos. The ESP is Yesmail, a division of information broker Infogroup.

Other organizations would probably learn from this mistake and not repeat it. The U.S. DMA, however, is a special case. The U.S. DMA — unlike every other Direct Marketing Association in the world that I know about — openly defends the practice of unsolicited bulk email. We at the Mainsleaze blog consider unsolicited bulk email to be spam. So do almost all ISPs and companies whose mailservers are targeted by spammers. I suppose it is no surprise that the DMA practiced what it preaches.

I’d have previously thought that the DMA would at least have the sense not to spam the personal email addresses of such antispam luminaries as CAUCE Director Neil Schwartzman and Spamhaus CEO Steve Linford, however, to say nothing of many other antispam activists. This spam run has already resulted in Schwartzman posting a scathing blog on the CAUCE web site, and Spamhaus listing the IPs used to send it. (,, and From the grumbles that I am hearing or reading in antispam fora, I expect the volume of protest to go up considerably.

Sending IPs:

Spam Sample:

Actual Headers:

Received: from ( [])
        by <xxx> (Postfix) with ESMTP id <xxx>
        for <xxx>; Sat, 26 Oct 2013 16:xx:xx -0000 (UTC)
DKIM-Signature: <xxx>
DomainKey-Signature: <xxx>
Date: Sat, 26 Oct 2013 09:xx:xx PDT
From: "DMA Career Center" <>
Subject: Kick It Up A Notch With The DMA Career Center
To: <xxx>
X-Header-Versions: DMACareerCenter.<xxx>
X-Header-CompanyDBUserName: dmamarketing
List-Unsubscribe: <mailto:dmamarketing<xxx>>
Message-ID: <DMACareerCenter.<xxx>>
X-Vitals: <xxx>
Reply-To: DMACareerCenter.<xxx>
X-Header-MasterId: <xxx>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: multipart/alternative;

Readable Email:

From: DMA Career Center <>
To: <spamtrap>
Subject: Kick It Up A Notch With The DMA Career Center
Reply-To: <DMACareerCenter.<xxx>

NOTE: You are reading this note because your email program does not support messages in multi-part “MIME” format (you can see the plain text version of the message, but the HTML version is garbled). The best solution to this problem is to upgrade to an email program that supports MIME. If you can’t do that, then just ignore the part of this message that is improperly displayed by your current email program.

Click Here to learn about the lates DMA Webinar @HTML_PREVEIW_LINK

DMA does not sell or rent your email address to any third parties.
You received this email message at <xxx> due to your membership, participation, or interest in DMA.
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