Re: Today's Last Loser: Another Spammer

Spammer strikes again...

> ---------- Forwarded message ---------- > From: < > > Date: Apr 6, 2006 8:47 AM > Subject: XXXX XXXXX, please call > Mike, > Please call us at 1-866-677-4100. We previously tried to contact you > at 1-248-XXX-XXXX, but were unable to reach you. This is reference to > an entry form you filled out, either on-line or at a major mall or > movie theater. > We actually have some decent news in regards to the Grand Getaways and > Ford Explorer contest. We have an address, claim number, and further > details for you. Since all prizes are well over $500, we will need a > few moments of your time to cover all related lottery-type information > from procuring your prizes due to any tax issues on them. > Sincere congratulations! > Verification Center > P.S. For your convenience, we are available 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM Central > Standard Time, Monday to Friday > Jan 30 2006 12:45PM > Please follow url below to stop further emails >
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> Sender: > Verification Center > 105 South River Rd > North Aurora, IL, 60542 > [TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: I can only presume that Mr. Bonomi (the > author of the note before this last one) places _me_ and this Digest > in the same category as the 'Verification Center' above since _these_ > are the sort of things which AOL would require to pay their own way. > PAT]

Ah, but the real question is: *WHO*decides* whether you are, or are not, in the same category? And what the 'definition' of that category is.

I'm quite sure that if that 'verification center' was making the determinations, that they *would* put themselves in the "wouldn't have to pay" class, while it is unpredictable how they would classify Telecom Digest.

It is also an undeniable fact that some of the mailings originating from the Digest moderator are *indistinguishable* from what the 'evil spammers' send out. If AOL, for example, looked at one or more of those instances where the esteemed moderator decided to 'share the wealth' of his incoming spam, by sending it on to *all* the Digest subscriber mailboxes, it _would_ be very reasonable to classify the sender as a 'spammer'. *NOBODY* signed up to the Digest with the expectation that the moderator would _deliberately_ _and_intentionally_ send them 'lotto', 'Nigeria 419', bank/ebay 'phishing', and other scam messages -- but he =does=.

Note, given that neither the original line-item ("E-mail, should the sender pay?"), nor our esteemed moderator's impassionedly affirmative 'answer' to that question made any reference to AOL or its policies --

*nor* did my query regarding his answer -- it is hard to imagine how any rational person would/ could conclude that I was using AOL's categorization rules as the basis for my query.

BTW, I *DO* have issues with the concept of "sender pays the receiving ISP to bypass all spam-filtering, regardless of the user's wishes". Some are of a practical nature, some are philosophical.

[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: The answer to your question is that the the present-day 'authorities' (who intend to make the decision on pay to send mail or not) are the AOL people; they have said that when _taken in context_ over a long period of time (_NOT_ message by message but the entire contents of a Digest -- several individual 'messages') this Digest and other established Usenet-style publications do not qualify as and will not be counted as 'spam'. Context is the all-important factor; not any one single message out of the thousands which go out. If YOU honestly believe that taken in context over the quarter-century this Digest has been published that it amounts to 'spam' and is no different than the tons of crap which come out daily on no set publishing schedule, etc, then God Bless You. I guess I will qualify as spam in your estimation. Yes, there could be a change in the authorities; yes, the new authorities could take a different approach to what is what; we will have to deal with it when that time comes, if it ever does. Furthermore, you read this Digest in one of two ways only: Either you subscribe and ask to read it (and I can document your 'asking' to receive it if you are a subscriber) or you read it via a public mailbox (Usenet) in the same way. You do _not_ recieve this Digest in some sort of shady way, where it just shows up in your mailbox each day with no documentation.

That (documentation of your desire to receive it) and/or the overall context of the publication demonstrates it is not spam/scam. For everyone that is, except very possibly you, and what I can do for you if you wish, (and I may anyway for the hell of it) is dummy up my Usenet headers to always say 'seen-by' so Usenet will never give it to you again (!smile) and purge my mailing lists of any reference to your name and domain. That should resolve any issues you may have, or might possibly arise in your decision-making processes about how to detirmine spam/scam (or not). PAT]

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Robert Bonomi
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