Wednesday, 18 April 2007

I hate SPAM but ...

I hate spam as much as anyone else (in fact probably more than most). Since we switched over to using the new Gmail Apps service for all our email it has been such a treat with only the isolated case of spam email slipping past the Gmail spam filter.

On the flip side of the coin, spammers cause serious problems for us who legitimately send bulk email to opt in users. bidorbuy only sends emails to those who have opted in and in every newsletter we include a clear unsubscribe link (which when clicked on automatically populates the field with the email address the email was sent to). See an example. One problem we had in the past was some times users have a number of aliases and so if you leave it up to them to enter the email address they may not know which alias they originally subscribed with - the system above, whereby we automatically populate the field, besides making it easier for the user fixes that problem. Nevertheless last night I received the following email from spamcop:

From: Donn Edwards [mailto:xxxxxxx (at)] Sent: 17 April 2007 09:57 PMTo: hello (at) andy.higgins (at) FW: BIDorBUY keeps sending me SPAM

Dear Mr Higgins

I strongly suggest you comply with the request by Andrew Edwards to have his name removed from your mailing database. Failure to do so will result in you being prosecuted in terms of the ECT Act, which carries a 1 year jail term.

Also, your site does not comply with the Access to Information act, so further legal sanctions could be forthcoming.

Best wishes
Donn Edwards

-----Original Message-----From: Andrew Edwards [mailto: xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] Sent: 17 April 2007 18:43 pmTo: xxxxxxx (at) ''; Donn EdwardsSubject: BIDorBUY keeps sending me SPAM

The user also complained that he had tried to make contact with us 3 times. We operate a helpdesk system so that each time some one emails us they get sent an auto response with a ticket number for easy future reference. I checked in our helpdesk system and there was only one email from this user and that was sent last night (he could have sent an email using a different email address but I asked him to send us ticket numbers so we could follow up on why his query was not dealt with and so far I have not had a response).

I appreciate that people like spamcop are trying to help the situation but it would be great if there was some kind of system whereby reputable companies such as ourselves could be put on some kind of a white list and if there are problems then these problems are escalated to us in some organised manner rather than me being annoyed at receiving emails such as the one above.


Seychelles Digital said...

Hi Andy,

I checked out your blog. Great work you're doing there. Keep it up. I will get back to you shortly regarding your request.

Cheers, Jose.

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Donn Edwards said...

The email I sent you has nothing to do with the company, but was sent by me in my personal capacity as the brother of the person complaining. just happens to filter my mail.

I have no idea why your help desk didn't have a record of Andrew's pervious complaints, but perhaps if there was a record then he wouldn't have needed to complain several times.

Thanks for resolving the problem, although I see that the site still doesn't comply with PAIA