December 02, 2002

A small dispatch from the spam-wars

Today I wrote a 'reply' to a message cross-posted to a half-dozen mailing lists, most of which I'm not a member. I expected some bounces from that, but one of the bounces was:

5.3.0 Rejected your system is a spam source see

My system? Whaa? C'mon, give a person a fighting chance. What is "my system"? Sigh. Time to go check the blacklist form. Now, which of the possible IP addresses involved didn't it like? Granted, statistically, I'm running on the extreme edge of mail sophistication, with my own custom configuration. But against that, were I an ordinary person, I'd be stopped cold at this obscure message.

So, I go to and try the IP's which might be problematic. Note, at least I know the IP's - another thing most people would have a hard time doing. Finally, I get to the source of the problem:

I generally list cable modem, dsl and adsl networks where the provider does not publish the customer contact information for the sub-allocations via either ARIN or rwhois. Examples of such providers include but are not limited to AT&T and GTE.

Blech. I suppose if I were a journalist, I could kick and scream and cry bloody murder, and get away with forwarding legal threats. But I have absolutely no desire to do that, and it wouldn't work for me anyway. And it wasn't a very important message in the first place. Loyalty oath: The blacklister has a complete legal right, the mailing-list has a complete legal right, blah, blah, blah ...

Sigh. There's perhaps a few thousands scammers and thieves who are ruining email for everyone, literally the entire Internet.

I hate the spam-wars.

By Seth Finkelstein | posted in spam | on December 02, 2002 11:34 AM (Infothought permalink) | Followups

Seth Finkelstein's Infothought blog (Wikipedia, Google, censorware, and an inside view of net-politics) - Syndicate site (subscribe, RSS)

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