It has emerged that the New York Times almost cancelled home delivery of its newspaper to everyone across the nation. This was after it accidentally sent an email to millions, which should have been sent to a very small number of subscribers.
The paper even sent the email to people that don't subscribe to the paper - a total of 8.6 million readers, rather than the 300 it intended to message, the company said, Fox News reported.
The email read, "Dear home delivery subscriber, our records indicate that you recently requested to cancel your home delivery subscription. Please keep in mind when your delivery service ends, you will no longer have unlimited access to NYTimes.com and our NYTimes apps. We do hope you'll reconsider."
First the paper tweeted that users should simply ignore the email as the email came from someone else and also suggested that the company had been hacked.
It said, "If you received an email today about cancelling your NYT subscription, ignore it. It's not from us."
Then media watchdog Jim Romenesko uncovered an internal Times email that offered a different explanation.
It stated, "Dear colleague, please be aware that a spam message was sent broadly today with the subject line 'Important information regarding your subscription.' This e-mail was not sent from The New York Times. If you received it, please delete it. We will be alerting subscribers immediately,"
Romenskos story also suggested that the rogue email might even have come from a disgruntled employee.
But after an hour of confusion, misinformation and mistakes the Times' corporate communication department confirmed that that the email did come from them and it was, in fact, simply a mistake.
The paper clarified, "An email was sent earlier today from The New York Times in error. This email should have been sent to a very small number of subscribers, but instead was sent to a vast distribution list made up of people who had previously provided their email address to The New York Times."
"We regret this error and we regret our earlier communication", it added.