The five most annoying promotional emails you'll get today

INBOX constantly stuffed to bursting with irritating promotional emails? You’ll be familiar with these:

The anxiety-inducing one

The subject line says ‘We owe you a big apology!’, leading you to believe you’ve been a victim of identity fraud. However it turns out it’s actually Wowcher apologising for having too many great voucher offers for you and they’ve found a highly manipulative way of making you opening their emails.

The guilt-tripping one

Did you once thoughtfully sign a petition about saving panda habitats? Well, now you’re going to receive so many emails telling you you’re a heartless bastard if you don’t donate money to the cause that you’ll end up wishing the pandas would die out just so you can be left alone.

The one that wasn’t supposed to get sent 

Clearly sent out in the middle of the night by a tired intern with an awful boss, this email bears the title ‘TEST’ and then says, ‘Dear [insert first name]’. You wearily delete it while knowing that somewhere out there someone’s getting an absolute bollocking.

The highly personalised one

There’s an email from Keir Starmer addressing you personally. Has he realised that your idea to ban woke avocados is the only way to revitalise the Labour Party in the north and wants to talk? You click on it and realise that, no, it’s just a generic email with your name auto-populated in the subject line. Piss off, Keir.

The one you can’t unsubscribe from

Clicking on the ‘unsubscribe’ button leads you to the Preferences Centre, a labyrinthine hellscape that requires you to change your email address, enter your grandma’s maiden name and remember a password you invented in 2009. You are stuck with their crappy daily lifestyle brand offers for the next fifty years. Ooh, actually, that Le Creuset pan looks quite cheap.

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'Wokery' and other terms: Where is your vocabulary on the twatometer?

EXPERTS agree that your use of language says a great deal about whether you are a twat or not. Rate your vocabulary on our entirely scientific ‘twatometer’.


An even more tiresome way of saying ‘woke’, which is a fairly tedious subject by now anyway. Apart from sounding silly, it also marks you out as a regular reader of the Daily Telegraph.

Twatometer rating: 8


Why say this instead of ‘relatives’? It’s just an extra syllable. The amount of time you’re saving is negligible, and you’ll sound as if you’re speaking inauthentic dialogue from a bad play about loveable working class Liverpudlians.

Twatometer rating: 6


Like ‘bonking’, a term that has suffered a welcome decline in popularity. If you do use this term instead of the perfectly acceptable ‘money’ you are probably some knob who loves talking endlessly about your buy-to-let activities. 

Twatometer rating: 9


You are not three. You are talking to adults. Spare us your teeth-grating whimsy. The word is ‘piss’, a fine Anglo-Saxon term which has served us well since the days of King Egbert.

Twatometer rating: 7


For the millionth time, he’s not ‘Boris’, he’s Boris Johnson, or, more correctly, Alexander Johnson. He is not a big cuddly teddy bear, he is a ruthlessly ambitious human with some odd ideas about what constitutes ethical behaviour.

Twatometer rating: 10