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Help! My email failed with "Not delivering to a user who marked your messages as spam"

Have you ever received a ton of email from someone?  Sure, we all have!  In such scenarios, we may grow tired of the sheer volume of emails and seek to unsubscribe.  But what if the unsubscribe isn't honored, there isn't even a way to unsubscribe, or you're really frustrated?  You've likely resorted to marking the message as spam so that you never have to deal with these emails again. Unbeknown to you, that's exactly what your customer Jesse did.  Jesse received a ton of Black Friday emails from you this year and decided enough is enough: spam button pressed!  However, during your yearly Black Friday sale, you notice that Jesse is no longer purchasing anything.  Being a certified email-beast, you look inside your Mailgun Logs or check your Bounced and Dropped webhooks - and maybe even your Mailgun Suppressions tab - and you notice Jesse's email failed with the message "Not delivering to a user who marked your messages as spam". 

So, what does this error mean, and can Jesse still receive emails from you?  Don't worry: we'll explain everything you need to know below! 

TL;DR Overview
If the recipient marks your message as spam, the rule is that you need to honor their decision of strongly rejecting your emails.  The exception, however, is either if the recipient specifically reaches out to you stating the complaint was made in error or if the recipient later opts-in to receive emails once again; in such exceptional cases, the recipient should opt-in once again to your emails and you may then remove their address from the Suppressions tab.  Removing the email address from the Suppressions tab of the Mailgun Control Panel will allow delivery of new messages to said address.


The Cause
This error indicates that the email address is currently suppressed by our system from further delivery attempts. Why?  Because sometime after receiving one of your emails, the recipient decided that she or he no longer wished to receive any further emails from you, and as such, marked the message as spam or junk in their email application.  When the recipient takes this action, her or his email provider generates a complaint and sends it to the sender's email provider (in this case, Mailgun).  As such, we suppress the address to protect both your and our sending reputation as well as to comply with international laws and regulations. Sending to recipients who no longer wish to receive emails possibly violates numerous laws and regulations and negatively impacts sending reputation, which in turn lessens your chances of optimal deliverability.

The Solution
The solution depends upon the reason behind the cause: did the recipient intentionally or unintentionally complain about your messages by marking them as spam/junk?  In the overwhelming majority of cases (i.e. virtually always), the recipient's complaint is intentional; as such, you cannot remove their address from the Suppressions, and you must desist from emailing them any further. (An important point: if the recipient opts-in to receive your emails once again at a later date, their address can be removed from the Suppressions list).  In the overwhelming minority of cases (i.e. virtually never), the recipient's complaint is unintentional; as such, if they reach out to you explicitly stating the complaint was unintentional, the recipient should opt-in once again to your emails while you remove that recipient from the Suppressions.

In the case that removing the address is warranted, you can remove the address from the Suppressions tab (or via the Complaints API using an HTTP DELETE request).  Simply mark the checkbox next to the recipient and use the delete button to remove the suppression.  Once removed, new messages that you send to the recipient will attempt delivery rather than being suppressed.

Finally, to read more about Suppressions, please see this related help article!  If you have any questions, please open a support ticket (cool tutorial .gif below) within your Control Panel, and our team will be happy to assist!  


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