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

Scott Kitterman <sklist@kitterman.com> Mon, 05 October 2020 04:22 UTC

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From: Scott Kitterman <sklist@kitterman.com>
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Date: Mon, 05 Oct 2020 00:22:20 -0400
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Subject: Re: [ietf-smtp] why I'm discussing the spam filtering problem
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On Monday, October 5, 2020 12:06:25 AM EDT 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 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.)
> 
> > 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.

And anyone who want to receive email without filtering is quite free to do so.

> > 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 you said is the same thing I said, just said differently.

> > 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 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.

I will confess that I haven't been following the recent threads exhaustively, 
but I haven't seen it.  I think the most hostile email I've seen recently is 
yours that I originally replied to where you accused people who disagree with 
you of actively wanting to sabotage email.  I agree that sort of discussion is 
unlikely to be productive.

Scott K