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Hear, hear. If you're worried about legit customers getting unsubscribed against their will (because that is TOTALLY a significant occurrence...), you can have a dual approach. Unsubscribing without authentication sends one final message which has an undo link; unsubscribing while authenticated shows a confirmation on the site instead of the inbox.

I know, the "Here's an email to confirm that you hate our emails" message isn't anyone's favorite... but if it helps companies improve their unsubscription mechanisms, I can let it slide.

If your unsubscribe links are something impossible to guess (e.g., "https://example.com/spam/unsubscribe?d=<long, randomly generated string, which is a key into your DB>"), how could someone possibly get unsubscribed against their will?

You (subscriber who wants the mail) forwards it to a friend who wants to /dev/null it; friend clicks unsub link and original subscriber stops getting the messages.

What if I forward you a newsletter that I thought was interesting and you click the unsubscribe link?

Do you have an example in mind of what makes that a significant occurrence?

I subscribe to patio11's newsletter. Then I send a particularly good article from the newsletter to you via forwarding email. You say "Screw this" and hit the unsubscribe link.

Happens all the time, and now you've unsubscribed someone who is a high value member of the list.

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