Tuesday, July 31, 2007

"Privacy Compromise"

The Dean wrote an interesting sumamry of my message yesterday about Cincinnati Bell's apparent goofing up of their own email headers.

Well, I don't know if it's a "privacy compromise", per se (many people have the same "house IP #" for their routers and I think Yahoo and AOL thought that many people on Fuse with the same model of router were actually the same computer), but I DO happen to know what brand of wireless router the Dean uses based solely upon the headers of his emails from his Fuse account.

This spam business, by it's very nature, is COMPLICATED, and, unfortunately, the people you end up talking to about it are very often Level 1 or even "Level 0" Help Desk people who, whether they work for Cincinnati Bell, Pomeroy, or the Devil, are making quite often significantly less than people working for WHITE CASTLE and VASTLY less than people waiting tables for someplace that's tipped, like Olive Garden or Applebee's.

That being said, there are three outfits that are "pretty good" at email. They are GMail, Yahoo and, believe it or not, AOL.

They are pretty darn good at communicating with one another, and, in the case of AOL, you can even get your own domain and use IMAP access through Outlook or something of the sort, but that's another topic.

Why are these three so good at email? Becasue their survival depends on luring MILLIONS of people to try to sell them cars and credit cards, and if you want to lure millions of people consistently every day, you better provide a "good email experience".

Minimal spam.

And your emails BETTER get through.

To that end they have come up with tools such as "DomainKeys" and various other things to help in the war against the zombie computers spewing out billions of messages selling penny stocks, but, pretty much, if a "small time player" such as Cincinnati Bell, Time Warner or AT&T want to play in this arena they had BETTER start paying attention to the big players because, after all, your puny $45/mo. or whatthehellever is no match for the HORRENDOUS amounts of money the credit card and auto companies will pay Yahoo, Google, and AOL for a few microseconds of your attention ...

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