Tracking the E-mail You Sent

Ever wonder whether your friend have read the email you send? Send email already but your customer denies about received it? Perhaps DidTheyReadIt can help you.

Technology News writes:

Subscribers to DidTheyReadIt receive an e-mail message notifying them of the time, rough location and duration of the recipient’s viewing of each message the subscriber sent. The service is available in quarterly, semiannual or annual subscriptions and ranges in price from $25 for three months to $50 a year.

How does it work?

  1. Register an account at http://www.DidTheyReadIt.com. (Free trial account available now)
  2. At email you want to track, add .didtheyreadit.com at the end of receiver’s email address.

    Example:
    me@receiver.com becomes me@receiver.com.didtheyreadit.com

  3. send it out.
  4. The email will be send to DidTheyReadIt.com and an invisible image(1pixel x 1pixel) code will be append to the email body. The code will be used to track the email.

    Sample code:
    <img src="http://didtheyreadit.com/index.php/worker?code=38dd0e7349f63df33d1fsadf52344825d" width="1" height="1" />

  5. When the receiver open the email, the DidTheyReadIt can track the receiver by using the invisible image. Sender will be notified then.

    Note: forwarded email still can be tracked. As long as the invisible code still in the email body.

Sender will get a report of the tracked email. The information collected included number of opened, number of reader, date and time opened, read duration, location, ISP, IP address, etc. Here is sample of email tracking report.

How to avoid being tracked?

DidTheyReadIt will failed to track email if…

  1. Receiver reads the email offline.
  2. Receiver’s email reader does not support HTML mail. Example: plain text mail reader. Webmail which does not display email image automatically(example: Gmail) will not be tracked too.

ABNORMAL use of DidTheyReadIt(by LcF)

  • track your “private photo” :twisted: that send to your boyfriend. See if he forward(read: share) it with others.
  • Chain mail senders can know their chain mail has reached which corner of the globe.
  • Put the invisible on your WEBSITE and track your site visitors.
  • Can you think of other way to use it? ;)

Privacy concern
Unlike current email return-receipt, the receiver of DidTheyReadIt email may not aware of it. It raises some privacy and security issues.

Thought:
I don’t think it will get popular because it does not work 100%(anti track is possible, as mentioned) and there are privacy issues.

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