Will the Spam Ever Stop??

november 20, 2002

Spam is awful. I'm not talking about the pink meat substance (which, in its low-fat concoction is actually pretty tasty and good), I'm talking about that junk email that clogs up everyone's email boxes. When will this stuff stop? Probably never, since it is predicted that it will ever increase over the next few years. I don't know about you, but logically thinking, the idea of Spam just doesn't seem to work. I mean, sure in the early days of email it probably got people to click and even maybe got people to buy.

But come on, truthfully, how many of you have had that urge when you opened that email with the Subject "Hot Girls XXX!!!" or "You've Been Approved!!" to just click and buy something from that asshole who just sent you the piece of junk mail?

I know I haven't. I don't even bother to open junk mail anymore, it goes straight into the trashcan -- as I think it does for most of us. So what really drives the Spammers to keep on Spamming? I have no idea. But I wish they'd stop.

If your ISP doesn't already filter for Spam, I'd suggest that you suggest to them to start doing it. I know Yahoo! Mail does do some Spam filtering (with their Bulk Mail feature) and it does work rather well. But, for those of us who have actual POP3 or IMAP accounts it would be nice to have our mail filtered. Yes, there are mail readers that do this after the fact (like Apple's Mail.app and Microsofts Entourage -- on the Mac), but it is very satisfying to know that the Spam never even got a chance to hit your Inbox at the serverside, right?

For me, I run my own mailserver so I get to use all the filters I want. After I don't use filters on the serverside, I use RBLs (Realtime BlackHoles). When a server contacts me and wants to send my server email, its IP address is checked against a bunch of RBL servers (bl.spamcop.net, sbl.spamhaus.org to name two). If it's on their list, the server is not allowed to even try to send email to my server.

Well, what about collateral damage? You may ask. I'm not too worried about collateral since most of the RBLs that I use are not too aggressive -- except for bl.spamcop.net, but that's another story. The RBLs that I use check and double-check before adding to their lists. bl.spamcop.net actually depends on the Spam reports of the users at SpamCop.net to generate a very dynamic list. It works really well and is fast at catching current Spam servers.

If more mailservers start to use tools like RBL servesr, maybe it'll really start to make a dent in the Spammers quest to flood everyone's email box. Complaining to the government only got us a small quote that gets added to most Spammers emails. Bah. :) Anyhoo, if you hate Spam and get a piece, report it at [url=http://www.spamcop.net" target="__spamcop]SpamCop[/url]. And if you want to hit the Spammers back, have your ISP start using an RBL to block off rogue mailservers that either are open relays for Spam or are just serving for Spammers.

One day we'll all think "Spam" and not think about junk mail, rather a nice nutritious meal that consists of a pink meat substance. Yum.