Spoke.com attempts to shed it's evil image

While one business networking tool attempts to rid itself of a reputation for spam, another tries to make us think that they are not going to collect or sell our private information. Last year, we alerted the unwary (also below) of Spoke's practice of using your Outlook Contacts to create a database of people they could then sell to others. Spoke cried foul! Now, one year later, they have sent out a follow up email saying that they no longer require the use of their data collecting toolbar. Does that mean that they are no longer evil? We don't know about that, but we do rather hope that our warnings to people were not without effect. In this updated email, we couldn't help noticing that one year later, they are still selling the same 36 million contacts in 900,000 companies that they had for sale last year at this time.

Phil, give Spoke another try!

We noticed it’s been a while since you registered for Spoke’s business network, and you haven’t been using it. We wanted to let you know that Spoke membership is still free, and you no longer need to install our Microsoft Outlook toolbar to discover and access people in Spoke’s open network of 36 million people.

We know that some people were unable to take advantage of our free level of service in the past because it required Microsoft Outlook for Windows. If you were one of the people in that situation, we hope this change in our service will encourage you to give Spoke another try.

To make revisiting Spoke simple and easy for you, we’ve automatically enabled your membership using your existing username (xxx) and the password you chose during registration. Click here [link deleted] to come back and give us a look!

Best Regards,

Frank Vaculin
President & CEO
Spoke Software

Has anyone had any luck getting their information removed from Spoke.com? We've had a number of people say that they tried, but not one has mentioned that they succeeded.

About Phil Yanov

Phil Yanov is a Technologist, Columnist and Public Radio Commentator.

He is the founder of Tech After Five as well as the founder and President of the GSA Technology Council and the IT Leadership Council.

His personal technology column appears in Greenville Business Magazine and the Columbia Business Journal.

He co-hosts the Your Day technology shows heard on NPR radio stations across South Carolina and is a frequent contributor to technology stories appearing on radio and television.