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  1. #1
    SitePoint Wizard aaron.martone's Avatar
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    Spam™...wait, no ™

    I find it funny, and somewhat hilarious that Spam (unsolicited commercial email) is not regulated.

    Postal mail is regulated. If it doesn't not have return addresses on it, proper postage and markings, it doesn't get delivered.

    Email can bounce off servers, have it's headers changed, and come from addresses that don't exist (or are setup in a manner to prevent replies)

    The reason why postal mail is regulated is to protect the consumer. Otherwise I could send you 10 pieces of mail a day, filled with any content that you may see not fit for members of your household, and the government couldn't do a thing about it.

    Instead, there are rules in place for postal mail (contact person, give request for removal, they have 2 weeks to remove you from the list, and if you get any further correspondence, you can take them to small claims court (maximum $1500 fine) and win quite easily.

    In fact, a friend of mine has done this 3 times to the same company. It's called harassment after you've been given a warning and time to stop; same deal with the phone. Tell a telemarketer "What company is this again? And who are you? (write it down)" Then say "I am taping this conversation (really, tape it!) I'm hereby giving legal notice to remove me from any form of contact. You've been given your legal warning." and hang up.

    After 2 weeks, they call, boom, take em to court.

    So the question is, why aren't steps put in place to protect us from spam? Spam is directly proportional to disrespect. Bots scanning websites for email addresses, confirming on replies that addresses exist, selling what should be considered personal information (email address is a methof of contact, just like a postal address is)

    How come each time new steps of technology come out, they do nothing to prevent the fraudulent use of it's tools on the end user?

    How do I handle spam? Like this

    Step 1. Get Spam.

    Step 2. Curse vehemently.

    Step 3. Find a valid email address via website link, email or DNS record checks, and send an email that is similar to.

    "Sir or Maddam.

    You have wrongfully solicited commercial email to my address; an address, might I add, that is not now nor has it ever been agreed upon by myself inclusive to receive such material.

    Your act of disrespect deserves one in return. I know I can't force you to stop spamming people. There's only an Unsolicited Commercial Mail ACT (Acts are not enforcable, as are laws), so I will do the next best thing.

    I have programs that will allow me to send you many (thousands) of massive emails (5MB worth) at set intervals all day long (if I'm by the computer or not) This is called Mail Bombing. My current ISP does not have any Acceptable Usage Policies that prohibits the sending of email, so this is fine. Your mail server will have to download each one or you'll have to purge all the emails from your server and lose everything (no loss to me, I'll just mail bomb you again the next day and so on)

    I think that you'll agree with me that email needs to be regulated. Maybe one day you'll develop business models and tactics that respect future clients rather than abuse them.

    However, like all businesses, I'll make a proposition. Remove me from your mail list, and hell, inform me as to how you obtained my email address (buy from a list, took from a spider, eh?) so that I may press legal issues upon those responsible.

    You can ignore this email for only 2 weeks (that's the legal amount of time I have to give you to remove my email from your list) At that time I will start bombing your mail server on a daily basis. Have a great day.

    Step 4. Smile.

    Out of the 50 emails I've written like this, only 3 ignored me. Most come back with something along "Our apologies, we've removed you" to "You have no right to threaten us like that..."

    Of the 3 that ignored me, I bombed all of the, the ISP of 2 of them added me to their mail filter (I do likewise to all spammers) and the 3rd one said "Uncle" after 3 days. (834 - 5MB emails were sent all saying "Hi! I like Spam! Spam is Spamtastic" or some garbage to that effect.

    Disrespect deserves more disrespect. I'm suprised my ISP hasn't talked to me, but I've read their AUP. The only thing close is "don't abuse the network" Well if other networks let people email thousands of people a day, I'm well within my rights.

    So what are your thoughts on spam? GOOD GOD DID I JUST WRITE ALL THAT!?!? I'm goin to bed....

  2. #2
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy TheOriginalH's Avatar
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    Hehe - I like it a lot.

    I too hate spam. I think governments worlwide are waking to the fact that there is a tangible cost (ergo business case) for sending spam - bandwidth costs money! The network is constantly full of spam, slowing it down, affecting "proper" business - things will happen, but it's never quick enough.

    One issue though:
    Your act of disrespect deserves one in return. I know I can't force you to stop spamming people. There's only an Unsolicited Commercial Mail ACT (Acts are not enforcable, as are laws), so I will do the next best thing.
    Acts are laws. They are the written intention, interpretation and application of which is undertaken by judges. I believe this is just as true in the states as in the UK.
    For example (here) the law relating to "theft" is the "Theft Act" (1968 I believe). It lays out what constitutes the crime of theft, ergo formulating the law.
    ~The Artist Latterly Known as Crazy Hamster~
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    Currently delving into Django, GIT & CentOS

  3. #3
    SitePoint Enthusiast Traduim's Avatar
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    Nice idea, I should try :-D
    Josep Tarrés,
    traducción
    traductor

  4. #4
    SitePoint Zealot Blunderboy's Avatar
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    Good idea.
    I think spammers should be forced to eat spam until they die in public.

  5. #5
    SitePoint Member alan1's Avatar
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    hi, thanks for the idea, I think I should try this, i have just had the nigerian fortune sellers in my inbox again so they may well be worth taking on, only prob. is, where can i get an efficient spam prog.

    Alan
    www.towntwinning.org.uk

  6. #6
    SitePoint Wizard aaron.martone's Avatar
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    Acts are laws?!

    I spoke with a lawyer who told me that "Acts cannot be enforced" He said that they are "guidelines for proper business or ethics"....

    If they ARE enforcable, I'm suprised why most ISPs don't take "your customers are spamming me" cases seriously....

  7. #7
    SitePoint Wizard silver trophy TheOriginalH's Avatar
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    Well, I am no US law expert, but I suspect he's talking pooh.
    Fwiw - recent UK "acts (of parliament)" that formulate our law: http://www.legislation.hmso.gov.uk/acts.htm

    He may be speaking of some other type of "act" I wasn't previously aware of, but in general application they are most certainly NOT limited to business (and the ethics issue is arguable)...
    ~The Artist Latterly Known as Crazy Hamster~
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    Currently delving into Django, GIT & CentOS


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