Tuesday, March 09, 2010

An Open Letter to the Disney Corporation

Dear Disney,

Thank you for the 57 mailings we received yesterday advertising your $500 per night resort rooms. Unfortunately, the various names on the mailings, presumably made up by one of my daughter's school friends as a prank (as they share a lot of their last names), do not live here. Additionally, we live in a single family home which could not comfortably support 57 people as a main residence.

I can only assume that you have a computer database with which you extract the addresses from. If it is a modern relational database that supports the SQL language, you may be able to leverage such functionality as the "group by" and "having" clauses to prevent obviously fraudulent database items, perhaps substituting a single "Seymour Butts or Current Resident" mailing.

Here is an example SQL statement to illustrate my point. My main assumption here is that it is unlikely for a single address to have more than 4 families living in it that are likely to vacation at Disney resorts, therefore you can safely cull out addresses that occur 5 or more times in the database with a statement such as:

select address,count(*) from address_tbl group by address having count(*) < 5

Please run that by your DBAs and get their take on it, and, more importantly, stop enabling mail fraud. It's a felony, after all.

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