Peepmail Finds Email Addresses Not Publicly Available

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Q: I've haven't been able to find one specific person's email address online. Searching Google didn't work and the address wasn't available on her business website. Do I have any other options or should I just give up?

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A: Instead of filling out one of those cold, impersonal contact forms found on many websites, you're much more likely to get a response if you can track down the email address of, you know, a real person. This is especially true for people in my own industry, those looking to pitch specific editors or reach out to other writers. I'm sure there are a host of reasons why you, too, might want to contact somebody but not have their email address on hand.

That's where Peepmail comes in. A new project from Samy Kamkar, Peepmail is a simple "tool that allows you to discover business email addresses for users, even if their email address may not be publicly available." You just enter the full name of the person you're looking to get in touch with and the company they work for. For some, Peepmail hasn't found a way in; The Atlantic, for some reason, is unsearchable -- most of us have our email addresses available on every post we write anyway. But other companies that I tried in a test run worked just fine. It certainly beats guessing, over and over again, what an individual's address might be. (Oh, how many times I've tried that only to have my inbox fill up with return to sender messages.)

When the New York Times Magazine relaunched under the editorship of Hugo Lindgren, the decision was made to include a note on who edited each feature story. The note includes an email address (l.kern-MagGroup@nytimes.com, for example), but it's clearly a second address built for the public-facing site. MagGroup? Come on. Peepmail, as you can see in the screenshot included above, gets you around that barrier and into the regular inbox of any editor you'd like to reach.

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Nicholas Jackson is a former associate editor at The Atlantic.

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