Re: [ietf-smtp] why I'm discussing the spam filtering problem

Laura Atkins <> Mon, 05 October 2020 09:29 UTC

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Date: Mon, 5 Oct 2020 10:29:44 +0100
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Subject: Re: [ietf-smtp] why I'm discussing the spam filtering problem
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> On 5 Oct 2020, at 05:06, Keith Moore <> wrote:
> On 10/4/20 11:48 PM, Scott Kitterman wrote:
>> On Sunday, October 4, 2020 10:18:08 PM EDT Keith Moore wrote:
>>> It's because I care about Internet email, and having it work well.  
>>> It's because I hate to see Internet email lose out to FacedOut and
>>> LockedBook and Tooter and Frop and most of the other profoundly
>>> dysfunctional toys that people use for interpersonal messaging these
>>> days.   It's because (and I'll probably regret saying this) RFC821,
>>> RFC822, and their descendants have actually held up fairly well in terms
>>> of functionality, especially in comparison to these toys, though there's
>>> clearly a need for improvement by now.
>>> I'd like to think that other people here also care about having Internet
>>> email work well, but so far the loudest people just seem to be screaming
>>> for their right to sabotage it.   Maybe there's some good intent and
>>> good faith buried in those arguments, but it's hard to see.
>> My advice would be stare harder.
>> In my view, email without spam filtering would be totally unusable.
> Well, in my experience, that depends.   I operate some accounts with no spam filtering, some with, using different accounts for different purposes.   That has worked fairly well for me.  I do get some spam on the unfiltered accounts, but not enough to be terribly bothersome, and it's certainly better to leave spam filtering off for those accounts than to risk losing a gig.
I operate all my accounts with no server side spam filtering. It’s actually quite bothersome. But given my client base (people who are falling afoul of filters) the other options for letting potential clients contact me are unappealing to me.
> (I have other accounts that get horrendous amounts of spam despite having spam filtering.   I'm phasing those out but it can take a long time to update everyone's idea of your email address.)
Have you never accidentally deleted a wanted message? I’ll be honest, I won’t believe you if you say no. 
>> Spam filtering email may cause problems, but it is still a net benefit.  
> I do find spam filtering useful in some instances, but don't see a general net benefit.  Sometimes it's a win, sometimes it's a huge lose.

Filtering is about more than blocking spam. It’s about blocking malware and viruses, it’s about blocking phishing. It’s about providing a safer environment for end users. 

>> It's necessary precisely because email is such a great messaging system.
> I don't follow that.   Certainly spam filter is sometimes necessary, though, because email is so accessible.
>> What's your solution?  Don't filter and deliver everything isn't a solution.  
>> It merely transfers the problem to someone else.
> Agree, but I wouldn't expect the optimum to be at such an extreme anyway.
I don’t think having a static IP with a consistent hostname and HELO/EHLO is an extreme requirement in the least. 
> I have some ideas, but I don't think I could work out the entire solution by myself.   And in an environment with as much hostility as this one, I don't think suggesting something that isn't both comprehensive and comprehensible is likely to produce any kind of constructive discussion.
That statement has gone past passive aggressive and is, itself, hostile. And likely a violation of the list code of conduct.


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