[EM] Policy change: non-subscriber mails automatically rejected

Abd ul-Rahman Lomax abd at lomaxdesign.com
Wed Apr 5 12:59:13 PDT 2006

At 12:12 AM 4/5/2006, Rob Lanphier wrote:
>So, the long and short of it is this:  non-subscribers who send mail
>this list will automatically be rejected.  They will receive a bounce
>notification with list subscription information, but it will be
>unambiguous that their post will not get through.

Geez, you should have done this long ago! It is so simple for anyone 
to subscribe to a mailing list that it is appropriate to let the 
writer bear the burden; it is small, compared with burden of going 
through thousands of spams. I manage quite a few lists, and, for a 
long time now, I've used the automated mechanisms to prevent spam 
from getting through.

For my business email, I receive something on the order of 500 spams 
per day. I do not allow my domain host to automatically reject this 
mail, because I don't want even one innocent AOL user to fail to 
reach us because the particular server was used by a spammer before 
AOL booted him. I use Mailwasher, which uses IP blacklists plus 
Bayesian and other filters, with a very low false positive rate, but 
I don't automatically delete the tagged mail, rather I scan down the 
 From and Subject headers, quickly, looking for anything indicating 
legitimate mail. For a mailing list, I'd never put in this much work, 
even though it is only a few minutes per day. It is enough if the 
sender gets back a copy of the rejected mail; the rejection message 
should include information on how to join the list legitimately, and 
the content is there in case it was posted through some means that 
did not leave the sender with a copy.

>If someone wants to volunteer for queue duty, I could reverse this
>policy, but at this point, I recommend against it.  The problem is just
>too big.  It's easier just to reject all non-subscriber mail.

Indeed. There are better places to use your time and the time of 
those who would volunteer....

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