Years ago when Google launched Gmail it was an invite only thing. I received an invite and set up my email, my first name @gmail.com. That's pretty cool, but for one thing, there are a lot of other people in the world with my first name who can't seem to remember their email addresses.
My email address gets signed up for everything, gaming sites, dating sites, Ashleymadison, Paypal, NZ Oil workers, somebody just signed me up for Instagram like ten minutes ago, and then requested the confirmation email be sent again. And that's what this post is about.
Some companies, like Instagram, let a person remove their email address from association with the account, "Didn't sign up? Click here to remove your email address." Many, many other companies do not.
So I end up on the phone with Paypal, "I get it I'm not the account owner and not authorized to make changes to the account, but so long as my email address is on there, I have access to their money, so you probably want to remove my email."
This also becomes a problem if I ever want to sign up for something myself, like I tried to do recently at Epic Games. A lost password request will sometimes work, but someone had tried to play Fortnite on an Xbox with my email, so apparently I can't play on a PC. I don't even own an Xbox!
That's when I find myself emailing something to the effect of: "I am trying to give your company money, but four years ago someone tried to register using my email address, and though I did not click the confirmation link, you stored my address with that account and I am now barred from paying for your service."
Is it so hard to schedule a cron job to clear out unconfirmed accounts, or at least unconfirmed email addresses?
So that's it, my little rant. If you ask for an email address, and it's not confirmed in a timely manner, scrubbing it from the DB might save someone a headache.