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I do not like spammers

Some material is very old and may be incorrect today

© July 2004 Tony Lawrence
Fri Jul 23 09:25:33 2004 I do not like

Referencing: /consultants.html

Recently, someone "spammed" the Consultants list.

This happened not to be really objectionable - it was a pitch for a Linux management company - but it is a matter of principle: you shouldn't be sending unsolicited email even if it is possibly of interest to the recipient.

There's not a lot I can do about it. You can leave your email address out of your listing, but then potential clients can't reach you. I can implement a system where they have to request your address, but that's annoying and could slow down an emergency contact.

I suggest that those who were spammed do all let the spammer know what we think about it.

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"There's not a lot I can do about it."

Nor do you need to. I'm sure any of us spammees (is that a word?) will be more than happy to rebuke the spammer and then hit the Del key.


---July 23, 2004

Well, actually there are things I do to decrease this:
First, there is a static (semi-static) page at http://aplawrence.com/Links/consultants.html that lists everybody, but deliberately leaves out email addresses - it's purpose is just to give search engines a link to your sites.

All other access is through cgi-scripts, and there is nothing obvious that will give you the whole list at once - you have to follow cgi links, drilling inward. It's not the kind of thing anyone would do unless they seriously want your email.

So the question is - should I add some minor challenge/response there to make it even harder for automatic harvesting? Right now, any reasonably intelligent harvester could write a script that could just come get everything - I can certainly force the involvement of a person. Should I?


---July 23, 2004

I asked that question on the c.o.l.m newsgroup and got this:


Personally, I wouldn't worry about it.

People who post their e-mail address on your site are smart enough to know that there's a risk of somebody spamming that address. I'd suspect that any address posted there is probably posted elsewhere---on the individual's own site, for instance---so I'd suspect the majority of
people are getting spam at that address through other avenues, too.

Because of that (and because they're consultants rather than newbies), the people posting addresses are likely to be using some sort of spam filter on their accounts, too.

So don't worry about it too much: these people know the risk they're taking, they're likely to have that address spammed no matter what you do, and they know how to handle the problem on their end.


I thnk that's probably good advice


As I said above, nothing's broken, so no repairs are needed. Between Delete and access.db, I'm sure I can keep a lid on this kind of nonsense. I've noticed that the Viagra ads have tapered off quite a bit. This could be the result of my vigilant spam policing, or perhaps just a signal that the Viagra sellers think I don't need the product. <Grin>


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