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Listwashing is the process through which individual entries in mailing lists are removed. These mailing lists typically contain email addresses or phone numbers of those that have not voluntarily subscribed. An entry is removed from the list after a complaint is received. Only complainers are removed via this process. It is widely believed that only a small fraction[citation needed] of those inconvenienced with unsolicited email end up sending a proper complaint. Because most of those that have not voluntarily subscribed stay on the list, and only the complainers stop complaining because they are removed, this helps spammers to maintain a "complaint-free" list of spammable email addresses. Internet service providers who forward complaints to the spamming party are often seen as assisting the spammer in list washing, or, in short, helping spammers. Most legitimate list holders provide their customers with listwashing and data deduplication service regularly for free or a small fee.
Email marketing has evolved rapidly alongside the technological growth of the 21st century. Prior to this growth, when emails were novelties to the majority of customers, email marketing was not as effective. In 1978, Gary Thuerk of Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) sent out the first mass email[1] to approximately 400 potential clients via the Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (ARPANET). He claims that this resulted in $13 million worth of sales in DEC products,[2] and highlighted the potential of marketing through mass emails.

Email design matters in any successful email marketing campaign. If your emails look terrible, that reflects badly on you, and can make people stop reading. With more people than ever reading emails on mobile devices, it’s important to use a responsive email template so your email resizes automatically whether people are reading it on a phone, tablet, or desktop.
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