SPAM on List...

jw schultz jw at
Tue Dec 10 10:38:00 EST 2002

First let me say that Martin (and any others list managers)
is doing pretty well.  Although there was a breif rise in
the volumen of spam leaking through during the transition
it has settled down quite nicely.  This is an arms war and
I don't expect perfection.  Cudos!

On Tue, Dec 10, 2002 at 10:08:19PM +1300, Christopher Sawtell wrote:
> Greetings list admins
> I'd just like to add that as almost all the SPAM I receive is HTML, a very 
> effective way to get rid of a very large fraction of spam would be to refuse 
> all HTML posts. I've not seen any genuine posts to this list which have been 
> web pages.

I can almost second that.  That seems to hold true for the
last couple of months.  Perhaps html is already blocked.
I do know that some valid mail may come in with
Content-Type: Multipart/Alternative where one is text/plain.
Although i don't like the waste of bandwidth i could see
accepting that.  It is the stuff that is only html that
should definitely be bounced.

The other clear indicator that comes up more often here
seems to be non-english messages.  Care has to be taken not
to block just because of a few words but if the message is
mostly non-english or is in a charset incompatible with
english it should be bounced.

At least with the bounce mechanism senders can know they
aren't getting through.  I assume the bounce refers to a URL
with guidelines.

Let me be emphatic about not using IP based blocking.
Unless you can guarantee that only spam will come from a
given address its false-positive history is overwhelming.
A few false negatives i can live with.  A false positive
that the sender cannot correct for is unacceptable.  Having
the wrong IP address or gateway is not a correctable

Like the poor, spam will be with us always.  It cannot be
stopped by legislation and social pressure will only go so
far.  Consider how much junk snailmail you get.

Anyways, Martin & co I thank you for your efforts.

	J.W. Schultz            Pegasystems Technologies
	email address:		jw at

		Remember Cernan and Schmitt

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