[thelist] The Spam Argument [long] (was: Hiveware emailaddressencoder)

bruce bedouglas at earthlink.net
Fri Jul 25 14:47:20 CDT 2003


you do realize that when i started this mess...it was basically tongue in

and yeah.. what i've proposed... is pretty much impossible without some
radical changes in the architecture...but it could happen...but i tend to
like the bounty aspect myself....


i've got work to do..

-----Original Message-----
From: thelist-bounces at lists.evolt.org
[mailto:thelist-bounces at lists.evolt.org]On Behalf Of Steve Lewis
Sent: Friday, July 25, 2003 12:26 PM
To: thelist at lists.evolt.org
Subject: Re: [thelist] The Spam Argument [long] (was: Hiveware

bruce wrote:

>your friend has arguments that are pretty much based on the fact that the
>costs of email are pretty much borne by someone else... when you or i or
>others send a moderate amoutn of email, it's not a big deal... you're
>willing to take the time to clean out your box, etc... there's a cost, but
>it's realtively small, so you don't complain....
>however, when someone starts to send massive (above some threshold) amounts
>of mail, the cost rises... and someone is still paying.. your friend is
>able to do what she does, because part of her cost of doing business is
>being paid by someone else..
You hit the nail on the head, spammers can spam because the true costs
are passed along to the public... in the US most advertising is
subsidised one way or another, but spammers in particular pay very
little of the cost of doing business and that is why it is cost
effective.  They can buy address lists inexpensively, they can get
access to an SMTP agent inexpensively, and the costs don't scale up
quickly as there is no per-piece cost, little effectuve bandwidth
limitation, and no target audience premium for every 5 seconds it takes
to read the email and reach for the delete key.

So quit yapping and do something about it Bruce!  Write a replacement
protocol for SMTP that requires senders to authenticate. It has to be a
lightweight protocol because even without the weight of spam, email is a
very important network service.  It has to allow authentication against
an administrator's prefered user base (LDAP, SQL, PAM, BDB, whatever)

Then write an easy to install and administer piece of software for
Windows and *nix that uses this protocol.  Make this software also
accept plug-ins:
- virus scanning
- accounting (so that ISPs can regulate the amount of email traffic
their users can generate, and potentially charge them per email)
- distributed black-listing service so that ISPs can identify and refuse
incoming mail from problematic hosts

We need a better protocol and MTA to do some of this, and you know you
cannot replace SMTP completely so build it with that in mind.

>allow you to "own" your email address... and allow you to sign up for a do
>not spam list. make it illegal for anyone to send "spam" to an address you
>"legally own"..make it leagal for companies to sue spammers based upon them
you are kidding right?  check some mail headers, most spam *I* receive
comes from Hungary, China, etc... international laws against spam would
be a joke even if you could get them.

>raise the cost of doing email....by some 10000%..however, have a mechanism
>in place that says if yousend less than x/month..you don't pay...
you can do that among reputable and major ISPs in some countries, but
getting China onboard will be difficult.  Better have a server-blacklist
to refuse connections from.


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