Monthly Archives: November 2011

Gordon v. Virtumundo, the sequel

I was slightly surprised that Gordon was still pressing on with his case against Virtumundo. It seems that Mr. Gordon appealed, again, to the 9th circuit. James Samuel Gordon, Jr., appeals pro se from the district court’s summary judgment in his action alleging that defendant’s transmission of unsolicited commercial email or spam violated federal and […]

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About that Junk Folder

I use a pretty standard mail filtering setup – a fairly vanilla SpamAssassin setup on the front end, combined with naive bayesian content filters in my mail client. So I don’t reject any mail, it just ends up in one of my inboxes or a junk folder. And I have a mix of normal consumer […]

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Opt-in vs. opt-out

Jeanne has a great post up at ClickZ comparing the performance of mail to an opt-in list to performance of mail to an opt-out list. The article looks at opens, clicks and click through rates over 7 quarters (Q1 – Q4 2010; Q1 – Q3 2011) covering 330 million emails. I strongly suggest anyone interested […]

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Listen to me talk about filtering, blocklists and delivery

I did an interview with Practical eCommerce a few weeks ago. The podcast and transcript are now available. I want to thank Kerry and the rest of the staff there for the opportunity to talk email and filtering with their readers. Happy Thanksgiving everyone in the US.

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We lie more in email than in person

People are more prone to lie over email than face to face.

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Having the same conversation

This morning I was reading a blog post about the failure of the congressional super committee. The author commented parties can’t reach an agreement if they’re not even having the same conversation. I realized this is just as true in email as it is in politics. All too often we’re not having the same conversation. […]


More legal problems for Boris

Boris Mizhen is once again on the wrong side of legal action. This time it’s not as simple as Microsoft suing him for creating hundreds of thousands of accounts to try and game the spam scoring system. Instead, he seems to have run afoul of the FTC. This case isn’t obviously about email, but the […]

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Email lost a mighty advocate

Last night J.D. Falk passed away from stomach cancer. For those of us who were privileged to know him, it was not unexpected but it is still a sad day. CircleID has a memorial post up. I’ve known of JD since I started in email in the late ’90s. I had the privilege of meeting […]


IP reputation and the bulk folder

I’ve spent much of today talking to various people about IP reputation and bulk foldering. It’s an interesting topic, and one that has changed quite a bit in the past few months. Here are a few of the things I said on the topic. Generally IPs that the ISP has not seen traffic from before […]


Vetting customers

MAAWG has published a BCP for vetting new customers. This is the culmination of much work by a lot of people. One of the best things about the document is the discussion of how spammers attempt to hide their identity. All too often I’ve been called in by ESPs to help them identify how a […]

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  • Lost in the mists of time

    Over on the Farsight Security blog Joe St. Sauver talks about some of the early days of online abuse, on usenet. Laura and I were on the periphery of early usenet abuse, mostly as users, but Usenet (and IRC) around then were the places we both started with email abuse.No Comments

  • Ongoing Yahoo delays

    I've been hearing from folks over the last few days that they're seeing an uptick in deferrals from Yahoo! The deferrals are not uniform. ESPs report they're seeing some, but not all, customers affected. Other ESPs aren't seeing any changes. It's not just you. But it would be very worthwhile to dig into engagement and other stats. It's possible this is a new normal at Yahoo! and they're tightening filters to catch mail that doesn't fit their standards but was previously difficult to filter.No Comments

  • AOL starts using Sender Score Certification

    Good news for Sender Score Certified IPs. Return Path recently announced that AOL has joined the list of ISPs offering preferential treatment to certified IPs.  1 Comment