Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Just Say “No” To mylife.com

* * * ATTENTION: I AM NOT MYLIFE.COM, IN ANY WAY AFFILIATED WITH MYLIFE.COM, AND CANNOT HELP YOU WITH YOU MYLIFE.COM. — SO I HAVE TURNED OFF COMMENTS. THEIR NUMBER IS 1-888-704-1900 * * *


Everyone in my address book received an e-mail from me asking them to join MyLife. To each and every one of you, I apologize. Please, just delete it as the spam it is.

How that happened was, I was asked to write a review of a “new” social networking site, and so I had to ‘enroll’ and become a member.. which involves building my “profile”.. which involves importing “who I know” (aka “contacts”).

The site/service in question is called mylife, which appears to me to be a mashup between the professional Linkedin social networking site, and PeopleFinders Reunion, the “locate long lost friends” site.

MyLife.com logo

MyLife.com Banner Logo

“Find Everyone & Stay Connected
across the web’s most popular sites”

Of course, you need to sign up, and of course, it’s “free to join”.

The first thing you’ll see is a full page ad for contact lenses (which you’ll need to find the teeny-tiny “no thanks” link). Then you’ll see another full-page ad.. and then you’ll be provided a form to fill in your personal details and build your MyLife “profile”. And you’ll be asked to import your contacts by providing your e-mail addresses and login passwords.

Please read that last sentence again.

Presuming you do so, and allow mylife to vacuum up your contact list (which is sent via unencrypted HTTP) it will then go through the Web and find any mention of them on the Web (such as, finding their Facebook page, Linkedin profile, etc.). It shows you some results, and
MyLife_sales_pitch

If you spend more than 20 seconds on MyLife, you’re going to see this page. If you want to click any of the links this service provides, you’re going to see this page. You’re going to see this page a lot.

Because this page is what MyLife is all about.

If you have ever used (or..tried to use) a free “people search” type website, you know how they work. You enter a person’s name, and they produce a list of results.. usually including the person you’re looking for. So you click on the “details”, or “contact”, or “more” button/link, and you’re told that access to this data requires “membership”. Same with mylife only worse.


* * * ATTENTION: I AM NOT MYLIFE.COM, IN ANY WAY AFFILIATED WITH MYLIFE.COM, AND CANNOT HELP YOU WITH YOU MYLIFE.COM. — SO I HAVE TURNED OFF COMMENTS. THEIR NUMBER IS 1-888-704-1900 * * *


I don’t think I’ve ever seen a site nag you to buy like MyLife does. Incredible.

Let’s say there was a case of “user error”, and it was my fault that all my contacts got spammed (with my name on it), I still could not find one thing to recommend MyLife.
Two big thumbs down.

[update: MyLife is the same folks who brought us Reunion. David Lazarus of the Los Angeles Times has accused social-networking site Reunion.com of abusing e-mail contacts. The company’s aggressive marketing tactics require you to surrender your address list to join up, in most cases. The site then sends out invitations in your name to all your contacts.]

[further update: for those of you with concerns about how your personal information is used (and sold), I strongly urge you to read, Mylife.com: A new tool for bargain-seeking stalkers. ]

LinkedIn is the only “social networking” thing I do. It is free and it is aimed at professionals (everyone I have ever talked to who has “looked ip old friends”, has done so on Facebook.). And if you really do a lot of looking up people (say, for genealogy), use Ancestry.com. You can get it free at your local library in most places.
And, oh yeah! Try Google. Put the person’s name inside quotes for exact matches.

… doubt I’ll be asked to do another review.. but I call ‘em as I see ‘em.

Addenda: I have received several e-mails asking how you remove mylife from a computer…

I don’t understand this. MyLife is a “service” you sign up for.. sort of like Facebook, or Twitter, or.. a webmail. It isn’t a program you install, or a malware infection like a virus. If you signed up, you have to log in to MyLife and unsubscribe. To stop receiving e-mails from them.. well, about all you can do is add a rule to your spam filter (sometimes called a “blacklist”) and block them. [for webmail, see Managing your email: eliminating the junk, and in a mail client see, Managing junk mail in Outlook/Thunderbird .]

* For those of you who want to learn about the proper way to un-entagle yourself from social networking sites: How To Remove Your Name From Search Engines and Social Networking Sites

* To see real life complaints (other than in the comments below), click here.

Copyright 2007-9 © Tech Paul. All rights reserved. post to jaanix

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* * * ATTENTION: I AM NOT MYLIFE.COM, IN ANY WAY AFFILIATED WITH MYLIFE.COM, AND CANNOT HELP YOU WITH YOU MYLIFE.COM. — SO I HAVE TURNED OFF COMMENTS. THEIR NUMBER IS 1-888-704-1900 * * *


March 6, 2009 - Posted by | advice, Internet, networking, social networking, tech, Web 2.0 | , , , , , , , , ,

117 Comments

  1. You’re quite right to make a “fuss” over this issue.

    We expect this type of crafty behavior from disreputable sites, and not from those that ostensibly hold themselves out as being legitimate.

    It appears that MyLife is just one more in a long line of those disreputable sites.

    Thanks for bringing this to my attention.

    Comment by Bill Mullins | March 6, 2009

    • It may very well have been something I did .. or should have checked more carefully. So I won’t go so far as to say MyLife is in any way disreputable. (And, I’m not about to recreate a sign up, and repeat the experiment, and chance it happening again!) (It is in my nature to give someone the benefit of the doubt.. however, if this was in fact programmed into the “Import contacts” feature, yeah, that would be pretty low.)

      But I will say that this site is very intent on getting paid, that it’s price seems high to me, and that what it provides is not much (IMHO). They need to use HTTPS if they want credentials.. and anyone who uses this social networking service (and has handed someone else the keys to their Inbox) needs to change their password.

      Comment by techpaul | March 6, 2009

      • Steve,
        Thank you for that.

        Comment by techpaul | October 14, 2009

    • this site is dirty! Dont even open the email invite!!

      Comment by Renee | October 1, 2009

    • This site posts information about people who NEVER have signed up such as name, family members, home city- this should be illegal, even if the info is public info! They obviously data mine on people who have consented to nothing… these guys are scammers- legal or not. We need to have some way to attack these kind of sites- along with other attack sites, spam, phishing etc and bring down their servers if the IP’s and regulators are not able to. Use the power of the internet against these jerks that take advantage of it!!

      Comment by Concerned MN | January 5, 2010

      • Concerned MN,
        While I believe that I can understand, empathize, and maybe even sympathize (a bit) with the ideas you express here, I absolutely cannot condone them. That is not how you deal with things you don’t like.. And, believe it or not, there are people who think MyLife.com is wonderful.

        If there is something in this life that you don’t like/approve of – and you don’t like it/disapprove of it so much that it is offensive to you, you boycott it/protest it/vote it out of office/advertise against it.. You don’t drop a nuke on it.

        Comment by techpaul | January 5, 2010

  2. mylife is a complete ripoff1 they used to be reunion.com, which google shows to have countless negative reviews.
    i thought they charge only $5, entered cr card info clicked “next” thinking i havent yet agree to charges. legitimate inernet vendors have you click a final “yes” before charging you. “next” brought me to terms which i did not agree to so i closed the page. while checking ym bank statment they had dinged me $1, $59, $1 in seconds. numerous calls to their reps 888-704-1900 resulted in them being argumentative, hostile. i reported it my bank. then recontacted mylife to get my name removed from their listings. this dept 877-820-9006 actually said they removed it and will fully refund my money. hope its true.
    do a google search on “888-714-1900 jeffrey tinsley” (ceo and founder of mylife)and you will see all the complaints. changing their name to mylife wont get them far for long.

    Comment by shannon | March 14, 2009

    • shannon–
      Thank you for sharing this with me and my readers.

      MyLife has also sent a second round of spam “confirm your..” to my Contact list, and this time I most definitely did not accidentally click the wrong something, or leave the wrong option checked. I haven’t logged back in to my account at all.
      I suppose I deserve it, for letting them see my list…

      Comment by techpaul | March 14, 2009

  3. MyLife.Com is a RIP-OFF. They lured me in by implying that they had information about a person I wanted to make contact with. They had less than you can get in “White Pages.” The service offered is laughable and their claim of a vast data base is hog wash. Dealing with MyLife.Com is annoying…and their claims are laughable.

    Comment by Brian Drew | March 29, 2009

    • Brian,
      I would say that you summed things up quite nicely. Thank you for sharing this with my readers.

      Comment by techpaul | March 29, 2009

  4. I got sucked in because I got an email from a freind I hadn’t seen in years asking me to join, so I did. What a mistake. As soon as I realized what this site was all about (10 minutes because I got an email at work from me) I deleted my account. I suggest everybody everyone do the same, or every week or so send an apology to everyone in your address book.

    Comment by Sean | April 5, 2009

    • Sean,
      I couldn’t have said it better myself.

      After the second round of spam-in-my-name, I was certain that that was their SOP, and I deleted the account. Fortunately, that ended (for now, anyway) my “contacts” getting hassled.

      Comment by techpaul | April 5, 2009

  5. Many thanks for this post I found while googleing for “mylife spam” (just without quotes ;D )

    I was just curious about their mails (from mylife@relay05.reunion.com) for some weeks now, as I definitely knew I had not registered with them, although its a common behaviour for me to check out all those social-media sites as well ;D

    Checking today for all the mylife mails I got already ( and didnt delete yet), I found the first “Confirm Your MyLife Account, Thorus!‏” mail, and now I do really know that I didnt register with them because it says :

    “Your Account Info: Username: thorus5327v”

    I would never ever choose such a user name ( even my thorus01-wordpress account is a very unusual exception )

    Now from what you wrote I can only guess that someone else put me up on their list and they just sent that fake registration confirmation mail.

    Unexperienced users might not really know how to handle this, but even experienced users can fall into those traps.

    I will just add mylife to my spam filter now.

    Many thanks again for solving this case ;D

    Comment by thorus01 | April 28, 2009

    • Thorus,
      I agree.

      All I could do was mass-mail everyone an (of my Contacts) an apology.

      Comment by techpaul | April 28, 2009

  6. i want my name deleted from mylife(at)mail.mylife.com and all my contacts.

    Comment by shirley jacobs | April 30, 2009

    • Ms Jacobs,
      Um… you are telling the wrong person.

      You need to contact MyLife, not a Tech Tips author.

      Comment by techpaul | April 30, 2009

  7. Lucy,
    I feel that your comment was too much of a personal attack against the CEO, and so – with some reluctance – I pulled it.

    I will ‘count’ you as one more who feels that mylife.com is a scam, however.

    Comment by techpaul | May 2, 2009

  8. Good luck to anyone seeking to “unsubscribe” from MyLife or from any of its perseverant spam! My brother absentmindedly granted ML access to his mailbox contacts and they have been pounding me daily at my office and personal addresses to click “yes” or “no” as to whether I “know this person.” (naturally, this has done wonders for relations with his own business clients.)

    If you click on either “yes” or “no” you are directed to their site; if you click the “unsubscribe” button you are directed to the site — in fact, any action whatsoever will simply connect you to the site. Once there, if you check FAQ to find out how to unsubscribe, you are told to “click “unsubscribe” in the contact message” which of course leads you back into the circular infinity of the site marketing page. THERE IS NO ACTUAL “UNSUBSCRIBE” OPTION!
    So, essentially, short of dumping your email address (which, being my standardized employer-issued work address, is not an option) it appears that once ML has you in their sites the only option is a site-specific spam block.

    Comment by umikiku | May 12, 2009

    • For recipients of the e-mails, yes, that’s pretty much what you have to do. I have provided links to the how-to steps at the bottom of the article.

      For people who signed up with MyLife, they can go in and change their “Options” and stop sending “updates” and “notices”, and reduce their annoying-my-contacts factor.. or they can completely unsubscribe from MyLife altogether (from inside their account).

      These guys aren’t stupid, they’re just ethically bankrupt.

      Comment by techpaul | May 12, 2009

  9. A google search of my name brings my MyLife listing at the top. The problem? I have never signed up with the company. It also states my age as 10 years older and my town of residence is outdated by several years (problematic somewhat in that I am applying for jobs and my experience does not reflect someone that age). I have asked the company to remove the listing and they do not respond. What they do is tell you to join Mylife as a member and then you can take charge of the listing. But then they ask for a membership fee. So, in other words, they post incorrect information about you without your consent and then charge you to fix it.

    Comment by M.E. | May 29, 2009

    • M.E.,
      First off, I want to express to you my gratitude for sharing this with me and my readers. It is an absolute fact of life that a potential employer will Google an applicant’s name, and no, they will probably not take the time to consider that the information presented may be corrupted or outright false.

      This kind of borders on the insane, doesn’t it? Wow. (Why do the words “George Orwell” keep leaping into my thoughts?)

      I’m rather irate, and the advice I’m about to give you really burns me, but… (And please keep in mind I am not a consumer advocate, or lawyer, but a computer repair tech.)
      You can gain some control by “playing the game”..
      * Use a disposable e-mail account and sign up for the free MyLife account.
      * Do not “import” any contacts, or agree to anything other than the “terms of service”.
      * Edit your profile.
      * After a few days, check Google and your profile again and see if the changes have been reflected. Then “unsubscribe”.
      (Man, I have a sour taste in my mouth!)

      Most of us don’t have a lot of spare time, but if you can make some, you might want to describe your situation to some consumer watchdog/activist/advocate type people/orgs.

      Comment by techpaul | May 29, 2009

  10. I was unfortunately sucked in to MyLife in a similar manner. I responded no to the import of my contacts and yet I am constantly answering the question “What is this MyLife thing” from friends and family. I have tried to delete my account twice with no luck and will now send email to everyone I know apologizing for imposing this on them and to warn them to stay away from MyLife. I’ll try the phone number listed above but I don’t hold out much hope.

    Comment by KP | June 1, 2009

    • KP,
      You answered “No” but got hoovered.. and you cannot delete your account using the Settings feature in your Profile???

      Outrageous!

      Please let us know what happens with your phone call.

      Comment by techpaul | June 1, 2009

  11. Just went through the same experience.
    this is the email I had to send everyone in my contact list.

    To everyone in my contact list.
    If you received an email from mylife.com inviting you to join me under the name of “M Mergui”, just ignore it. in just a few click they got my entire address book and sent an email to everyone with an invitation. after checking online I realized I wasn’t the only one been scammed.
    if you care to know how they scammed me and other, read this article. http://techpaul.wordpress.com/2009/03/06/just-say-no-to-mylifecom/
    I pretty much went through the same scenario, so don’t do it or else you will find yourself sending a similar email to everyone in your contact list to apologize.

    Best,
    M

    Comment by mm | June 15, 2009

    • mm,
      Based on the number of search referrals to this article, I am convinced of two things — you and I are not alone; and, the “public” is NOT HAPPY with mylife.com.

      Comment by techpaul | June 15, 2009

  12. PLEASE DELETE ME FROM MY LIFE..IM NO-LONGER AM INTERESTED IN MY LIFE.I WAS JUST PLAYIMG AROUND TO SEE WHAT YOU OFFER.THANK BYOU FOR YOUR INFORMATION,ILL PASS IT ALONG.DO NOT CONTACT ME AGAIN.IF I NEED YOU I KNOW WHERE TO FIND YOU..THANK YOU,BRENDA

    Comment by Brenda Todd | June 16, 2009

    • Ms Todd,
      You need to tell MyLife this, not me.

      Comment by techpaul | June 16, 2009

  13. I do not do any “social networking”; my husband and I are very private people. BUT, here’s how we almost got sucked in:
    Last year our 16 year old son was on myspace. There was an obsessed 37 year old woman cyber stalking him so, he set his profile to private, trying to keep her out. So, she set up an imposter profile posing as a 16 year old girl (fake photo & all), sent him a request to make her a “friend” and he fell for it. She proceeded to contact his friends and download the pics he had posted. We had no idea he had our family vacations, inside of our home, etc… Once he came to us to tell us the whole ugly story and we did some detective work (my husband’s a communications expert for the government), we were able to track down the phony profile. We complained to myspace and they reluctantly removed both of this child-stalker’s profiles.
    We deleted our son’s myspace and thought the whole thing was behind us. This is where we king of have to thank mylife.com, in a way. A couple of weeks ago, we received an invitation from “the stalker” to join “mylfe”. I guess she still had an email address somehow attached to the myspace account in her address book. This alerted us to her new email address. From there, we found out that she’s at it again. She had (has) our family (wedding, children, trips, pets) posted on at least 3 different sites. MOST have cooperated in removing our private family photos but, not mylife/ reunion. They won’t even acknowledge our complaint until, you guessed it, we become a “premium member”. What a scam! Our next move? We’ll have to take this to the Feds. Yep, this site is definitely a big scam. Not only that, I guess they welcome child predators! Sure hope they get shut down soon!

    Comment by MJS | June 21, 2009

    • MJS,
      Thank you for sharing your story.

      Comment by techpaul | June 21, 2009

  14. Thank you so much for this explanation, and also for giving the opportunity to people express their comments which is also a kind of warning about the scam.

    I’ve found your site googling the words “mylife.com”, and that is wonderful for whoever needs the explanation like me.

    I want to cooperate, by telling everyone here that also FACEBOOK has the same policy! My daughter who lives abroad sent me an invitation, I accepted, but kept very private, letting only her, as a friend, view my “profile” which I never updated (my husband and I are also very private like someone wrote above). Well, one of these days my daughter asked me to login and see some pictures she had published, and to my great astonishement, I say a list of persons that I know, with their pictures, under the title: “people you might like to contact” or something of the sort. I had never granted the site the right to access my email!!! And those people, now I know, are in my address book. It’s amazing, also Facebook doing that. A shame.

    Comment by S.Y. | June 23, 2009

    • S.Y.,
      Thank you for sharing your observations with my readers.

      I don’t Twitter or Facebook, and I would never have signed up for MyLife had I not been asked to do a review. “Social networking”, as this phenomenon is known, is not my bag (to say it politely).

      Comment by techpaul | June 23, 2009

    • S.Y. –

      I believe you have a bit of a wrong idea about Facebook and how it generates that list of recommended friends. Facebook has no rights to your email contacts.

      Though I don’t know the exact methodology behind the scenes, I imagine the site searches for commonalities among your info (“public” stuff you may have in your fb profile, like city, high school you graduated from and year, any groups or networks you’re in, etc) and those in the giant cloud of others already on the site too. Chances are good you may know these people. Chances are some of those folks are in your email contact list, and there are probably a lot of people Facebook recommends to you that are not.

      This MyLife thing, though…this is kind of scary, actually. It’s not a social media site, as it claims to be and as most folks seem to believe. It’s simply there to capture your info – taking your money in the process – and then selling it to others. And they make it nearly impossible to scrub yourself clean of it.

      Comment by Russ Maloney | September 2, 2009

      • Russ Maloney is right regarding FB. There is an option to search out your email contacts on FB but I’ve never done so and still get a long list of recommended contacts (many I do not know and who are not in my email address book). I get a lot of suggested contacts from my high school, college, and friends of friends.

        Regarding mylife.com, I think they’re luring people in with a slightly different tack now. That website showed up under my advertisement banner in FB. Their caption read, “See Who Has Been Googling You.” Now, I’m overly protective of my presence online and pride myself in being almost unGoogleable, so I checked out the website. I clicked through the site until they asked for my credit card and I declined. As far as I know, I provided my email address but didn’t share my contacts or my password. To be sure, though, I did change my email password immediately after reading this review and comments. This is very scary.

        Comment by MM | December 9, 2009

  15. To everyone in my address book that has received an e-mail from this site I apologize. The mistake was mine, I was looking for an old friend not knowing that by doing so my findings would incorperate all those listed in my address book. Consider it as spam and delete.

    Sorry for any inconvenience this may have caused you.

    Comment by Patricia Redmon | June 23, 2009

    • Ms. Redmon,
      I am NOT mylife.com, nor I am affiliated in any way.

      This is a rather scathing review of mylife.com, actually.

      Comment by techpaul | June 23, 2009

  16. I don’t think you guys are perfectly correct…
    Which website doesn’t have technical issues.. this website provided me great opportunity to find out some of my best old friends :)

    I had a good luck with this company..so i am happy.

    Comment by rajnish | June 25, 2009

    • Rajnish,
      It was not a “technical difficulty”, but a marketing strategy. That strategy is offensive and morally suspect.

      I am very glad that you were able to benefit from its service, and I will chalk you in the “supporter” column… the sole occupant there (so far).

      Comment by techpaul | June 26, 2009

  17. **WHAT MYLIFE.COM IS, REALLY**

    Many of you have come here to find out what mylife.com actually is, not to hear people bitch about their experiences with it. MyLife is one of those shady sites that sell other people’s private information–credit reports, criminal histories, health records–like Intelius and US Search. What MyLife has done is to assume the mantle of a social networking site in order to gain some undeserved credibility or mainstream appeal–the dead giveaway is that they charge for their services. Facebook and MySpace do not charge for membership, nor do they abuse the private information you have entrusted to them. MyLife actually goes further than Intelius and US Search; part of their M.O. is to build a database of correlated names, addresses, birthdates and email addresses as part of its signup process. Not only do you pay for any information you receive from them, you also surrender an enormous amount of private data for the privilege. If you want to reconnect with old friends, try Facebook. If you want to be an amateur Dog the Bounty Hunter, try Intelius. There is absolutely nothing whatsoever to commend MyLife to anyone.

    Comment by Dubya | June 26, 2009

    • Dubya,
      Thank you for taking the time and sharing this with my readers. I agree with your suggested alternatives and I am 100% in concord with your closing sentence.

      Comment by techpaul | June 26, 2009

  18. PLEASE–PLEASE–TAKE ME OFF YOUR LIST. I HAVE HIT THE UNSCRIBE BUTTON MORE THAN ONCE. I DO NOT CARE TO BE ON A LOOK-UP LIST…..MY DAUGHTER ENTERED ME THINKING IT WOULD BE FUN—WELL, IT’S NOT…

    Comment by Melody | July 2, 2009

    • Melody,
      The title of this website is Tech – for Everyone. It is a tech Tips & Tricks site.

      This is an article advising people not to get involved with MyLife.

      If you actually read it, you would learn what you can do to stop the e-mails. (Clicking “unsubscribe” is not the correct method.)

      Comment by techpaul | July 2, 2009

  19. I have been a member of mylife.com and my biggest problem is trying to login. NO matter what email address I use or what password I try, I CANT get in. I cant see any reason to stay a member of mylife.com. I noticed I was charged $11.00 once. So now I dont want to be a member anymore since I cant login. I want to delete all connections with mylife.com. This is not a comment but a desire to break all connections with mylife. Please stop sending me emails too. Thank you very much from Dennis Miller.

    Comment by Dennis E Miller | July 4, 2009

    • Mr. Miller,
      Um… you are telling the wrong person. You need to contact MyLife, not a Tech Tips author.

      You might find #2 and #6 on the MyLife.com Help page useful…

      Comment by techpaul | July 4, 2009

  20. Amazingly, this has not been submitted to Digg. I fixed that.

    Those of you burned by this scheme, please consider Digging this article up so other people are warned about MyLife.
    http://digg.com/software/Just_Say_No_to_MyLife_com

    I also put these clowns in my server’s SpamAssassin configuration, as the URI spam blacklists have not caught on to these clowns, yet.

    Comment by anon2 | July 9, 2009

    • anon2,
      I appreciate the “digg”. I believe this topic is worthy of people’s attention and I value your support.

      Comment by techpaul | July 9, 2009

  21. I find it rather silly that you all get so worked up about this one company that used the emails you provided to them. You really should read the terms of service it is pretty explicit.

    And why this one company? They are not the only company that sells personal information. They aren’t even close to being the first. Welcome to the 21st century, people are buying and selling personal info on you all day long.

    Comment by burnski | July 10, 2009

    • burnski,
      Most of those other instances don’t directly spam my contact list with e-mails that say “Paul wants you to join ______”.

      And.. I am not getting “all worked up”. I was asked to write this review, and I am simply informing people of what I discovered.

      At first I wondered why you bothered to write these, but I let it go as you help me make points I have been saying since I started this blog.

      Comment by techpaul | July 10, 2009

    • Hey Burnski,

      You see that insurance commercial where the guy promises the boy a toy truck, then gives him a cardboard cutout… or gives the girl a bike, but the terms only allow her to ride it in a 2×3 foot square box?

      Did you author that commercial?

      The norm is what FaceBook and LinkedIn do. IF you provided your email login, they still let you PICK AND CHOOSE who gets an invite. These scumbags just blindly email everyone with “so and so tried to leave you a message… login to get it”. This is a chain reaction… the messages go to everyone you ever emailed (auto-contacts…). Try explaining to your employer when he fell for the trick, and you caused him to do the same to everyone he knows. Just tell him “You’re so silly for not reading the fine print”.

      I got these emails from people who did NOT send them to me and did not know they were sending them. No matter how you try to deflect their behaviour (are you a shill or just intentionally smug?), they’re obviously causing a lot of harm.

      Comment by anon2 | July 10, 2009

  22. and all the comments about “well at least facebook is free” well I hate to break this to you, they have tons more information on you than this MyLife does. They are selling it now, they will sell it tomorrow and you will never be able to get it back. Welcome to transparent land – watch what you say

    Comment by burnski | July 10, 2009

    • see reply immediately above

      Comment by techpaul | July 10, 2009

    • Facebook is not in the business of double-talk and tricking people regarding their terms. Facebook is responsive to user complaints about privacy. I don’t think you are for real for even a second.

      Comment by anon2 | July 10, 2009

  23. While I enjoyed your review of the “mylife.com” website and wholeheartedly agree, I have to admit the “stop sending me e-mails” from irate users are my favorite part. :)

    I don’t know whether to feel sorry for them or just laugh… sometimes society scares me. :(

    TNSTAAFL

    Comment by Humored and Frightened | July 13, 2009

    • Humored and Frightened,
      Ah, yes, I thinks me and you’s is muy sympatico.

      And Heinlein was right, there is no such thing as a free lunch.

      Comment by techpaul | July 13, 2009

  24. I clicked on a link from Facebook saying “Find out who’s Googling you for free”. I completed the free registration and it came back and told me 29 people had searched for me. Then when I clicked to find out who they were it said I needed to buy a premium membership. So they downright lied to me. I make a point not to do any business with anyone who lies to me or deceives me in any way in an attempt to get my business so I immediately cancelled my free membership. I can’t understand why anyone would want to do business with someone after finding out they were lied to.

    Comment by gr8white | July 20, 2009

    • gr8white,
      I’m afraid you used the wrong word there.. it isn’t “lying”, it’s “marketing”, and I have concluded that they teach that in Business School now.

      It is up to us “common Folk” to display our displeasure and boycott such entrepreneurs, and spread the word to the others.

      Comment by techpaul | July 20, 2009

  25. I just signed up because I was looking for a friend I havent seen in 10 years and mylife was the only seemingly genuine result that came up under a google search…

    Anyways I just noticed that when I signed in again to delete my account (since the “Free” membership doesnt get you squat), I was greeted by my MySpace Profile Default Picture on the mylife user page! I had never uploaded ANY image to this site, it just felt it was ok to go grab the image by looking up the email address I supplied…

    Thank god it was a cartoon and not my real picture because from what I’ve read above I’m sure they would keep it up, to sucker in anyone who might happen to search for me….

    Comment by Chris | July 26, 2009

  26. I fell into this trap, How can I discontinue my membership. They do not give me what I expected, and a dollar here and there after paying for membership to try and cantact only two people I am interested in finding, actually was not worth the money for membership. How can I discontiue without using my phone? my hearing is not what it used be. thank you.

    Comment by Robert Press | July 28, 2009

    • Mr. Press,
      You must log in to your MyLife account, and under Options select “Delete my account”.

      If you need help.. you might find #2 and #6 on the MyLife.com Help page useful…

      Comment by techpaul | July 28, 2009

  27. Only a moron would give his email username and password out! Geez, how stupid are you?

    Comment by Bob Bogus | July 28, 2009

    • Mr. “Bob Bogus”,
      As clearly stated in the article, I was asked to write a review of MyLife.com and the “service they provide”.

      I agree that one should not reveal passwords; and if for some reason you do, you should change it to something different — and do so immediately!

      Comment by techpaul | July 28, 2009

  28. I have my own problem with Mylife.com. (whoever they are) I reveived a charge on an old credit that I hav not used in almost 2 years with a $36 charge from Mylife.com!!!

    I called the credit card company and they told me to call Mylife.com – yea, right! I have called and called and called – I never can get to tale to a representative to discuss this.

    I am definilty not paying this charge and I assume it will be handed over to the better business bureau. Unbelieveable!

    Comment by Joy Doran | July 28, 2009

    • Ms Doran,
      Thank you for sharing that with my readers. I would like to urge you to think about the possible ways someone acquired that cc#.

      One such way might be spyware on your machine. Please see, this article for some tools to detect and remove any infections.

      Comment by techpaul | July 28, 2009

  29. PLEASE DELETE ME AND ALL MY CONTACTS FROM THIS WEBSITE.

    Comment by NANCY | July 30, 2009

  30. GET ME AND MY CONTACTS OFF THIS WEBSITE NOW.

    Comment by NANCY | July 30, 2009

  31. CONSIDER THIS A NOTIFICATION TO UNSUBSCRIBE.

    Comment by NANCY | July 30, 2009

  32. Thanks for this article and the review! I always try to research websites that offer “free” services/products to make sure they’re legit and your review was here to help out.

    PS. It’s really amazing how many people are using your comment thread to unsubscribe to Mylife.com …

    And now we know how people get suckered in…

    Comment by Sharlene | August 2, 2009

    • Sharlene,
      You’re very welcome. Everyone should (IMHO) do what you do before they click.

      And yes. But I’m not sure “amazing” is the word I’d use… Frankly, I find it appalling.
      Different URL. Different color scheme. Different logo…

      Thank you for your comment.

      Comment by techpaul | August 2, 2009

  33. pay close attn. they ask for your e-mail address and the password to that address, get it they hack your e-mail but only becouse you gave them your password.

    Comment by jeff | August 3, 2009

    • Jeff,
      I have to disagree with you just a bit — MyLife does not “hack” anything (that I am aware of).

      They simply ask you, “What list of Contacts would you like us to search for?” (their “service”), and then ‘helpfully’ provide a Contact List Import tool.

      The “members” of MyLife have in fact voluntarily allowed MyLife to vacuum up their Contact lists, and provided their login credentials to do so. (As you point out.)

      I shudder to think what percentage of these “members” were savvy enough to then change those credentials afterwards… or even gave it any thought.
      We’re sort of being conditioned by these “social networking” things, you know? Like Pavlov’s dogs?

      Comment by techpaul | August 3, 2009

  34. I’ve read most of the comments on “MyLife” and agree with all those that say SCAM/SPAM. I was ‘tricked’ into signing on in an attempt to find a long lost cousin. Never did I realize that abolutely every contact in my address book would receive an invitation to join- in my name!
    I spent over an hour sending “I’m sorry, don’t reply” messages to my contacts! How awful. I have done the Unsubcribe thing- hope it works. I am thinking of turning them over to our state Attorney General’s office.
    Thanks for your site and it’s comments.

    Comment by Doris | August 10, 2009

    • Doris,
      Thank you for sharing that with us.

      Comment by techpaul | August 11, 2009

  35. How do I unsubscribe to MyLife. I can’t seem to get any response, except they want another e-mail address!!!!

    Comment by Leah | August 12, 2009

    • Leah,
      Please see the Addenda: section at the bottom of the article.

      You log in to your account > go into Settings > and click “delete my account”.
      There are instructions in their FAQ

      Comment by techpaul | August 12, 2009

  36. Please would someone kindly remove me from your email list. This is called UNSUBSCRIBE, I am not happy about all the emails you send me so let’s just stop it all together, thank you

    Comment by Craig Adler | August 19, 2009

  37. please send me the phone number to mylife,im getting no help by using your help button,so now its time to talk to a human………………..jami

    Comment by jami | August 20, 2009

  38. need phone number to mylife.com

    Comment by jami | August 20, 2009

    • jami,
      This is from their website:
      For questions regarding MyLife.com, contact customer care at 1-888-704-1900 between the hours of 6am – 9pm Monday – Friday, Pacific Time; 6am – 6pm Saturday and Sunday, PT.

      Also, you might find #2 and #6 on the MyLife.com Help page useful.

      To stop getting e-mails from them, you have to add them to your spam filter. See the addenda: at the bottom of the article for the How To’s on that.

      Comment by techpaul | August 20, 2009

  39. Techpaul,
    kudos to you for hosting and answering this blog. I find your responses throughout the history above to be cogent, correct and helpful, with so-far only one exception.

    On 7/20/09, you responded to a comment by “gr8white”, indicating that MYLIFE’s advertising “is not lying, it’s marketing”.

    Have you been to their homepage recently? Their headline indicates, “Join now to access [Joe Schmoe’s] full profile”. Directly below, and after you enter your personal information, is the the button “Join for FREE”. Directly below that is the line, “Join now & view the full [Joe Schmoe]profile”. The operative words in the presentational context here are “join” and “free”. This is indeed “lying” no matter how you choose to slice it from your own perspective.

    Comment by zonnynito | September 2, 2009

    • zonnynito,
      You are indeed correct that no matter how you slice it, it comes out to lying.
      The point I was trying to make is that it seems to me to be an increasingly persuasive “philosophy” and I wonder if they aren’t in fact teaching lying in Business School — under the name “marketing”.

      Comment by techpaul | September 2, 2009

  40. That is why I have a dummy account with one contact–another dummy account–to sign up on these types of services. Remember, these services are all started and run by immoral marketing types who think they are hot *stuff*. Note, they are the ones who were too dishonest to pass law school, so they became marketing sos’s. They will sell a turd to their own, and your, grandmother if it would make them a buck so they can buy a Land Blower or a Dummer H2 POS.

    “It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of the needle than for a rich man to gain access to Heaven”

    Comment by hate lying sos's | September 5, 2009

    • Sir or Ms.,
      I agree with your solution, and your general “opinion of” these types of people, so I have allowed your comment; but I changed a word or two, as this site is “for everyone”.. and not everyone likes foul words.

      Comment by techpaul | September 5, 2009

  41. I too was stupid and lured into My Life. I have reported them to: IC3.com, the internet web crime site affiliated with the FBI. I did not intentionally let them into my e-mail contact list to lure my unsuspecting friends and family to join their company. I felt victimized and therefore am reporting them to the government. I hope everyone does the same.

    Comment by Pat | September 8, 2009

    • Pat,
      Firstly, I don’t think it is “stupid” to want to look up old friends and classmates (though, that isn’t my cup of tea) but, not doing your homework before trying something, and ignoring the EULA can bite you.

      Secondly, I agree with your anger and desire to report things like this to someone.. but what they’re doing is not to my knowledge a crime um, er.. is not illegal..

      Comment by techpaul | September 8, 2009

  42. This is a rip off. You send me an email that 9 people have searched for me and if I click on you’ll show me one of the people. Well all I get is rerouted to another site to pay you. What a rip off.

    Comment by Phil | September 8, 2009

    • Phil,
      I have another shocker for you. Nobody searched for you.
      It is explained in all those words (above) that you skipped right over.

      Comment by techpaul | September 8, 2009

  43. I found no one search for me, I did try one person all I got was an address, of a person I did not know. I do not wish to be associated with my life,so please do not bill me for continueation with MY LIFE. I under stand I will not get my original payment back. when I try to unsubscribe via internet I was directed to varify by calling a 800 number I cannot use a phone because of hearing problems, what m I do do to stop any more billings from my life.

    Comment by Robert Press | September 18, 2009

    • Mr. Press,
      I am not MyLife.com, but you may be able ask this question on the MyLife.com Help page, which has a “Ask A Question” section with a form.
      (The direct link is here.)

      Comment by techpaul | September 18, 2009

  44. Thanks for the warning- I was trying to look someone up and the only hit I could find for the same name & location was on MyLife.com. I’m very glad I did not sign up. There are so many sites like that nowadays that try to acquire your & your contacts info and try hooking you in with free trial memberships- I’ll be more careful now!

    Comment by caelesti | September 20, 2009

    • caelesti,
      Thank you for taking the time to share this.

      It is the prevailing public perception that the Internet is a clean, safe, well-lighted place — like Disneyland or your public library — when in fact it is completely un-policed, and the playground for “cyber” criminals.

      I frequently advise, “the best attitude when online is one of ‘paranoid common sense’.”

      Comment by techpaul | September 20, 2009

  45. One possible solution might be to create a free email account just for this purpose, not one that has contacts or anything.

    Comment by Anonymous | September 21, 2009

    • Sir or Ms,
      If you were bound and determined to pay for and use this “service”, yes; that would be the smart (and polite) way to do it.

      But there are better alternatives for looking people up.

      Comment by techpaul | September 21, 2009

  46. Hi Paul!
    Well I must say I’m a little stunned and a lot amused at the posts from people who have placed unsubscribe messages on your site mistaking it for mylife. Alas if only they had taken the time to READ your site I think they’d be pleased to find all the good information that you have provided.
    First I just want to thank you for your post. I was thinking about moving to the premium subscription as the current subscription offer was small enough that I began to consider it. I decided to search on any reviews for mylife and thankfully found your site before I signed up. I set up a free account w/ mylife some time ago and have been getting their marketing email frequently. I passed on the “import your contacts” part in the setup as I generally feel that there aren’t any sites out there that I’m willing to give that kind of information to. Looking at your blog I’m glad I kept that info to myself. Needless to say, I’ll not be subscribing to mylife.
    On another note I’ve bookmarked your page & look forward to looking around a bit.
    Thanks!

    Comment by Mark | September 24, 2009

    • Mark,
      I actually started deleting them, as there was enough up there already.. And they’re still coming. (They didn’t actually have to read anything.. except maybe the banner.. )

      I would like to commend you for your good “paranoid common sense”, and to thank you for the kind words of support.

      Comment by techpaul | September 24, 2009

  47. I have never been able to get on the mylife site ,and there is no #PHONE TO CANCEL MY SUBCRIPTION,SO PLEASE CANCEL AS OF RIGHT NOW

    thank you very much

    Comment by sharon k keen | October 9, 2009

  48. What I want to know is, how do they know when someone does a search for you? I created an account years ago on Reunion.com which is still active in MyLife. I logged in a couple weeks ago to see that a “45-year old woman from Smalltown, IN” has searched for me through Google. This happens to be where my high school girlfriend lives and she was 45 a year ago. I did a search on MyLife and found that she has an account but I can’t see her info because I don’t pay for this stuff.

    Will she see that a “47-year old man from Suburbia, IL” has searched for her?

    Comment by Perplexed | October 9, 2009

    • Perplexed,
      I have no idea.

      My guess would be, no. They don’t care about you making connections, they care about harvesting your data and collecting fees, is my conclusion.

      I suggest other – more direct and reliable – ways of looking up your ex. Like.. the phone book.

      Comment by techpaul | October 9, 2009

  49. People, you need to read everything on the website before entering any information. I used to work for them. More on that in a bit, but the page requesting your email and password (in order to upload all of your contacts) CAN BE SKIPPED. Look at the webpage. All of the customers calling in o complain were very ignorant. A common response from customers was, “I just did what they told me.” or “It asked for my credit card, so I gave it.” Although the company does prey on ignorant users, YOU, the consumer, must read what you are getting into. Having said that, I quit because I was fighting too often to retain as much of the customer’s money as possible. That’s the game. You, the ignorant consumer, and even more so when it comes to computers, buys the service, the phone reps attempt to persuade you to stay with the service or downgrade to a lesser cost program. Here is a little secret: if you threaten a lawsuit or to contact the BBB, they will immediately give you your money back. Most people just fall for the sales pitch. DEMAND your money back, DEMAND that all of your info be removed, and, READ what you are signing up for. They prey on the fact that virtually no one ever reads a contract or fine print.

    Comment by Steve | October 14, 2009

  50. I don’t recall ever signing up for this and just got my bank statement and was charged $60.00 This is not right and I protest and want no more charges to my accounts. I am directing my bank to not pay any such expenses from now on.

    Comment by Joyce C Murphy | October 24, 2009

  51. Thanks for the information. I appreciate that you shared it and saved me from a problem. I also appreciate your balanced approach to this.

    Comment by Dave | October 31, 2009

    • Dave,
      Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment.

      Comment by techpaul | October 31, 2009

  52. yes i paid a year advance, they suck, when you do find someone, then they push you through to people search so you can keep throwing your money away wit still no answers! no adresses or anything unless you join people search too; im sure the list of cons continues on from there!

    Comment by tina | November 24, 2009

  53. When I go into my Privacy Setting to block the emails, what do I look for? How do I identify which one it is on the list provided?

    Comment by Cindy Townsend | November 28, 2009

    • Ms Townsend,
      It will vary slightly from individual webmail providers and whether you’re using Outlook or Thunderbird or Mail..
      But the rule you want to add (sometimes called a “filter”) should look something like “*@*.mylife.com” [no quotes]. Some only allow the domain, such as “@mylife.com”.

      (The “*” are wildcards and mean “any”. Refer to the links at the bottom of the article for more specific e-mail How To.)

      Comment by techpaul | November 28, 2009

  54. Cancel subscription

    Comment by Donna Debenedictis | November 29, 2009

  55. I had an account on Reunion.com, and my 20 year high reunion is coming up, so I figured I would use my inactive account, but I decided to do some checking first since the company has gone through a name change. I’m glad I did. It looks like I would be better off sticking with Facebook. Even though I think I have enough info now to not be snookered by the company, I don’t think I want to be affiliated with a company that does business in this way.

    And what’s with all these people sending cancel messages to your blog? The first one was funny, but then there was another, and another. I know its ugly, but I started to think, no wonder these people lost their money…

    Comment by John | December 11, 2009

    • John,
      I agree: use Facebook (or other means) to look up people on the Web. Please note that Facebook has made changes to User Profiles and privacy settings you may be unaware of. Please read, Facebook’s New Privacy Settings: 5 Things You Should Know.

      As for your observation.. I have deleted dozens .. and dozens..
      I’ll let you draw your own conclusions.

      Comment by techpaul | December 11, 2009

  56. So glad I read your Tech page about mylife.com.I was searching for family and got my answer from you RIGHT AWAY! Like go to Facebook or ancestery.com
    I ALMOST got stuck with going ahead and giving mylife money since they are so presistent!!
    Thanks for having the site to help me save my time for something more important than wasting precious time with time suckers!! Have a Happy New Year!
    (1st time I have seen the Tech site and am happy to see alot of useful info!!) Lots to learn!!

    Comment by Roberta Youmans | December 27, 2009

    • Ms Youmans,
      Thank you for taking the time and posting this nice comment. I am very glad you found the information useful.. and found it before signing up.

      I hope you will visit again.

      Comment by techpaul | December 27, 2009

  57. I also accidentally signed up for this crap. Luckily I saw the fine print, denied contact import and no contacts were harassed in the process. Thanks for posting the truth when asked to review their site; it is GREATLY appreciated. I wish there was a favor I could do in return. I think this is the best I can do though…

    THIS IS NOT MYLIFE.COM!!!!!! QUIT POSTING YOUR UNSUBSCRIBE REQUESTS HERE!!!!!! LEAVE THIS MAN IN PEACE, AS HE IS DOING YOU ALL A FAVOR TO BEGIN WITH!!!!!!!

    I doubt it’ll help since it appears a large number of internet users can’t/won’t read, but good luck with it anyways. And thanks again

    Comment by katie | January 12, 2010

  58. I think I’ve also found a problem other people have referred to…
    !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!DO NOT DOWNLOAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I found this while looking up some freeware programs. I think people have been downloading it and getting super suckered in by Mylife. I didn’t open it or save it, so I don’t know exactly what kind of program it is. Although, I’d guess it’s why people have been asking you how to remove MyLife from their computers. Which like you said, should be unnecessary since it’s just an online service. Hope it helps some people, (who take the time to actually read).

    Comment by katie | January 12, 2010

  59. Oh, well it didn’t show the html. I didn’t realize you could not post them on here. I’ll try a different way, no http. Let’s see if this’ll work…

    //gcapi.mylife.com/install/Reunion/RUSetup.exe

    DO NOT DOWNLOAD!!!!

    Comment by katie | January 12, 2010

    • Katie,
      Thank you.

      I will look into the setup.exe..

      Comment by techpaul | January 12, 2010

  60. please cancel my account with mylife

    Comment by BEKIR YILMAZ | January 26, 2010

  61. Hi,

    I came across your page about mylife.com after getting scammed by them yesterday. Here’s what happened…

    A friend on facebook listed a link to mylife.com and like an idiot I clicked on it. I thought cool, I can find out who is searching for me. I put in my name and a previous zip code where I used to live along with my age and email address (but not the password to my email). I never paid them any money, nor did I agree to “create an account” at mylife.com with a password. I just entered the above-mentioned info, nothing more.

    In return, for free, I found that one female (no name, but it provided her age and hometown) was looking for me and it also stated the city where I live now (even though I never entered that zip code) as well as my current PRIVATE (locked) TWITTER ACCOUNT!!!

    Okay here’s where it gets more strange: I do not, nor have I ever, had my real name associated my Twitter account. (My Twitter names (both the supposed “real name” and the Twitter nickname are the same silly word.) The only connection is that I use the same email address on Twitter that I provided to mylife.com. SO TWITTER PROVIDED MY TWITTER NAME TO MYLIFE.COM! WTF!!!

    So I have written Twitter about it but have not heard back yet. I also immediately called mylife.com by phone and they supposedly have deleted the account info (my email address and Twitter name), but said it would take up to 7 days to remove the publicly-available information they have from public sources from their site. (They said they had my current street address up on their site that anyone who is willing to pay can get. I couldn’t see that for myself because I never paid them any money.)

    Obviously mylife.com is bad news. I thought Twitter was much better than Facebook about protecting our info, but i guess I was wrong. I’m really chapped at Twitter too and plan to close my account shortly.

    One other thing: what’s strange is that I linked to mylife.com through facebook, but my facebook name (that name is not my real name either) didn’t show up, only my Twitter account did. Strange.

    Mary

    Comment by Mary | July 30, 2010

    • Mary,
      A Search should show you some recent legal troubles Twitter is in if you use the keywords “Twitter+privacy”.

      The second link in this article, How To Remove Your Name From Search Engines and Social Networking Sites, will help you with Twitter.

      Also, it was probably your web browser that told MyLife your location, though not your exact street location… All they are doing is cross-referencing available info. The third link in the article (above) will teach about safer (and more private) web surfing.

      Comment by techpaul | July 30, 2010

  62. * * * ATTENTION: I AM NOT MYLIFE.COM, IN ANY WAY AFFILIATED WITH MYLIFE.COM, AND CANNOT HELP YOU WITH YOU MYLIFE.COM. — SO I HAVE TURNED OFF COMMENTS. THEIR NUMBER IS 1-888-704-1900 * * *

    Comment by techpaul | January 9, 2011

  63. […] me: I was contacted and asked to review a new website, and the rest, as they say, is history: Just Say “No” To mylife.com Everyone in my address book received an e-mail from me asking them to join MyLife. To each and […]

    Pingback by 7 Links Challenge « Tech – for Everyone | February 1, 2012


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