From a kind, but annoyed subscriber, we received the following: "I love the magazine. I subscribe myself and send an annual subscription to friends." (That’s the good part.)
The complaint: "Imagine my confusion, therefore, when I received your impressive mail solicitation for new subscribers. Why send me a new member promo?"
The explanation: Paul Q. Kane, Commonweal’s ever-vigilant business manager (and a pretty kind guy himself) replied: "You received the recent promotion mailing because we are working to build a base of new subscribers. This means we have to purchase lists from other publications. Although we try to eliminate duplicates and the names of subscribers, they sometimes slip through the cracks because they are listed differently (for example, a subscription may be under a spouse’s name, or it may use initials rather than the actual first name). I am sorry that you received the promotion mailing unnecessarily."
From the editors: We are sorry, too. Readers so plagued could recycle Commonweal’s promotion mailing, or better, give it to a friend (or enemy). Maybe he or she would like to subscribe.