[thelist] Why Does SpamAssassin Hate America? (Or at least just me?)

Ben Dyer radicalbender at gmail.com
Tue Apr 1 12:09:05 CDT 2008

Admittedly, I'm being a little facetious, but I'm very irked with
SpamAssassin right now.

I'm writing an application that, among many other things, does some
simple file sharing.  The idea is a user uploads a series of documents
(architectural documents, in this case) and can share them with other
users.  The user gets the e-mail notification, logs into the site, and
there are the documents that were shared with them.

The problem we're experiencing now is that our e-mail is constantly
being flagged as spam by SpamAssassin.  It doesn't have anything to do
with the server: none of the SpamAssassin flags have anything to do
with having an open relay, not matching a domain, being on one of the
e-mail blacklists, etc.  The only major flag that we get every single
time is:

 5.0 BAYES_99 BODY: Bayesian spam probability is 99 to 100%
        *      [score: 1.0000]

Now, I know what this means (already looked it up:
http://channel9.msdn.com/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=330643 ), but no matter
what content I send in my tests: short e-mails, long e-mails, text
e-mails, HTML e-mails, multipart e-mails, the Wikipedia article on the
Missouri River (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Missouri_River), that
Bayesian spam flag is tripped every single time and it gets flagged as

So, what can I do?  I took care to avoid "spammy" words, but
SpamAssassin doesn't like the e-mail anyway.  I'm doing HTML e-mail
now, but it didn't like the content when I did text e-mails either.
Here's the contents I've been trying (with the pertinent bits and most
of the gnarly HTML removed):

<h2>You have documents!</h2>

<p>Hello, {RECIPIENTNAME}!</p>

<p>{SENDERNAME} of {SENDERCOMPANY} has forwarded you some
architectural documents using {NAMEOFSITE}, a service where you can
preview these architectural drawings and then have them printed out
for your use. You can see these files that have been shared with you
by <a>viewing the "{PROJECTNAME}" project</a>.</p>

<h2><a>Preview the "{PROJECTNAME}" Files</a></h2>

<p><em>{NAMEOFSITE} is a service where architects, owners, general
contractors, subcontractors and vendors can share architectural
documents quickly and efficiently. You are receiving this e-mail only
because someone you know or have worked with has given you access to
these documents. If you believe this to be in error, please contact
the original sender, {SENDERNAME}, at <a

Please help! I'm not ready to spend the next three years of my life
teaching people how to check their junk mail folders.


Radical Bender

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