Worst pitch of the month: Roundup of truly absurd PR emails in 2013

Summary:It's December, so these just HAVE to be holiday-related, right? Not necessarily.


To close out the year, this month's entry would almost demand to be holiday-oriented -- because that's how news cycles will things to happen.

But following the bah humbug-like nature of this monthly column, I'm shunning the holidays in favor of highlighting a few of the most outlandish, inappropriate submissions sent to the inboxes of ZDNet writers this year.

To some extent, these emails sell themselves on how ridiculous they are, and I don't have to do much of an explanation of why they are appearing in this month's column.

Let's just start with this one from back in October, forwarded to me by the esteemed Ed Bott:

Subject: [NEW BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH STUDY]: Global Breast Appreciation Viewing Habits (Full Stats, Figures, & Charts Inside)
Date: Tue, 22 Oct 2013 19:41:59 +0000

Hi there,

How’s it going?

October’s here – which means it’s time to pay homage (and always important donations) to everyone’s favorite magical chest mountains this Breast Cancer Awareness month to find a cure for the deadly disease that robs us of so many lives.

The statisticians at Pornhub.com, the premier destination for online adult entertainment, have gone through the rigorous process of tracking breast appreciation all over the world for the past 5 months in honor of these momentous 31 days.

They’ve pulled out all the stops from bar charts to dynamic maps and word clouds to document global preference for “Small Tits” and “Big Tits”, natural vs. fake, and the common adjectives used to describe massive mammories and their itty bitty counterparts.

Check out some of the graphs and images below, but more importantly please visit Pornhub’s new research insights page (SFW) to view this data in a more comprehensive light.

Feel free to reach out to [REDACTED] if you have any additional questions.



Before anyone even thinks to do so, please don't send me angry emails saying I'm downplaying or making fun of breast cancer research or awareness. You wouldn't be more off base.

But this is entirely the wrong approach in getting such important messages across -- let alone the PR flack sending this email, once again, doesn't know the audience or writer's beat -- let alone the primary subject matter of the publication for which he writes.

And then there were the attached infographics. I'm not even going to go into how absurd they are. You can take a look for yourself.


There were more, but I simply don't want to display them. Let's move on.

Topics: Tech Industry, E-Commerce, Social Enterprise, Start-Ups


Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider, FastCompany.com, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for MainStreet.com, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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