My family was recently involved in a brief taping of a Dateline episode. The producers were unsure of when the episode would run so I went to Dateline's Web site to try and find out. I figured that signing up for their email newsletter would yield the intended results. Boy, was I wrong.
I found the sign-up box, entered my email address and clicked submit. I was then told I needed to log-in to my .Net Passport account to sign-up for the Dateline newsletter. Huh? I'm trying to keep abreast of an NBC show to make sure I don't miss a particular episode and I need to register with Microsoft? No thanks, not interested.
It's stunning that a supposedly savvy Web property like MSNBC.com could be so out-of-touch with basic marketing, best practices on the net and their customers' experience.
Come on, MSNBC. Liberate your newsletters from the shackles of Passport now!