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Spam Turkey Bastards

By Gerry Patterson

The previous two articles on spam have generated considerable interest.

In addressing this issue, I attempted to be objective. However it was very hard to get two sides in the spam story since the negative sentiments expressed towards spam and spammers is almost unanimous. In my first article on the topic I proposed that Internet users feel territorial about their inbox and that this was the reason for the deep-seated hostility felt towards spammers. But the antipathy expressed towards them seems out of proportion to the severity of the offence. Some angry Internet denizens would even deny these spamming wretches membership of the human race, or at least cast considerable doubt on their family tree. A recent sample of particularly audacious spam forwarded by poet/historian Dan Byrnes summed it up eloquently with the following invective:

Gerry, Get a Load of these Spam Turkey Bastards:

Presented with such an inventive and colourful use of our mother tongue what else could I do but write a follow-up article ...


Aunty Jack(?), SPEWS on Which/T3 (from a great height)

In the early seventies, television audiences in Australia were exposed to a new and insane comedy called The Aunty Jack Show. The show broadcast on the ABC (Australian Broadcasting Commission) network featured a woman who was in reality a tall man (Grahame Bond) dressed in a loud floral print frock and heavy-duty working boots, sporting a moustache and pair of boxing gloves. Aunty Jack would finish each show with a message to all the kiddies:

Remember to watch my show next week kiddies ...
Or I'll come round to yer house and Rip Yer Bloody Arms Off!
This spoken in a loud and gruff voice. Just in case any little kiddies might get too upset, his side-kick, Thin Arthur would reassure them ... He will too!

So why am I reminiscing about dear old Aunty Jack, who although she was ten feet tall (and obviously a man), didn't scare us at all? This may seem a non-sequiter in an article about spam, but I thought of Aunty Jack as I read about the sorry plight of Wayne Mansfield, who runs The Which Company Pty Ltd, in Western Australia.

So great are Wayne Mansfield's grievances that he mounted a case in the Perth District Court against Joseph McNicol, a local car enthusiast. McNicol it seems, protested about unsolicited commercial e-mail sent from Mansfield's company, also known as T3 Direct. When these protests were ignored, McNicol dobbed Mansfield in to SPEWS, a well-known anti-spam organisation. As a result T3 Direct's IP addresses were added to numerous blacklists and their accounts were, for a while, suspended. In his legal action, Mansfield claimed susbstantial loss of business (which he says was legitimate).

Mansfield explains that his business actually has two arms. One of them (the nice arm) is involved in web-design and databases. The other (the naughty arm) is involved in bulk unsolicited mail-outs. Now as a result of actions by McNicol, SPEWS and assorted anti-spam crusaders, both arms of his business have suffered considerably.

So this is the connection with Aunty Jack ... SPEWS, just like the legendary moustached Aunty, ten foot tall, wearing a floral print frock, big heavy boots and boxing gloves has barged into this little Aussie battler's business and unceremoniously ripped both his bloody arms off. Just because one of those arms was a little bit naughty. It all sounds frightfully unfair.

Things have not gone well for Mansfield in court. The Deputy Registrar has summarily dismissed the case and made some very scathing remarks about Mansfield and T3 Direct. After such harsh treatment from the court, Mansfield is considering an appeal. However, he would be well-advised to think again, since he is unlikely to get a sympathetic ear in any court in the Commonwealth of Australia.

The problem for Mansfield is that the Judiciary in this country all use e-mail. As a result, members of this fraternity are ill-disposed towards spammers. The case turned decisively against Mansfield when he admitted to the court that he was indeed a spammer. It was then that the Deputy Registrar's statements became most caustic.

If that is not bad enough. Internet users from all around the world have contributed to a fighting fund for McNicol to assist in his defence and anything left over will go into further anti-spam campaigns. It seems the Internet community is not too well disposed towards spammers either.

Mansfield has got a rather poor deal from his lawyers. They have happily taken his money and hung him out to dry. McNicol's lawyers on the other hand have built on the case to promote their own on-line legal service. Today's lawyers have to spend a lot of time on-line.

Lawyers hate spammers too.


They Just Don't Appreciate My Work ... (!?)

Wayne Mansfield, it seems does not get much sympathy from members of the legal profession. However it is his dealings with the media that probably illustrate his problems most clearly. The radio program The Law Report is broadcast weekly on the ABC national network (RN). This show is presented by a lawyer turned broadcaster, named Damien Carrick. In a recent program, broadcast on 22 October, 2002, Damien Carrick interviewed Wayne Mansfield, and the interview soon touched on the nature of T3 Direct and the two arms of his business. We pick up the conversation at this point:

Damien Carrick: [Struggling to contain his amusement] So your clients, who you do the web pages for, have been caught up, if you like as collateral damage in this dispute?

Wayne Mansfield: [Indignant, betrayed] Yes, I would say that it's similar to Third Party forcing, because our providers wouldn't act against us, they've sort of attacked us from behind.

Damien Carrick: [Almost losing it, but managing to choke off the laughter] Do you acknowledge though that sending out of unsolicited bulk emails is likely to cause some people to be angry and to seek to block companies such as yourselves from sending them out?

Wayne Mansfield: [Assertively] Damien, it's no different between any other form of direct marketing. There are people who put No Junk Mail stickers on their letterboxes, there are people who object to receiving unsolicited faxes.

Damien Carrick: [By now, tears of mirth are rolling down his cheeks, but true professional that he is, his voice is rock-steady] But do you acknowledge that the receivers of spam are the ones who bear the cost, and so they say that it's not like junk mail arriving in your letterbox, because you're actually having to pay the price of receiving the email.

Wayne Mansfield: [Defiant] I think that's a spurious argument because Damien, if you've got an email account or an ISP account, it will charge you a flat rate and allow you an amount of mail up to that flat rate. And so that within that, one piece of email that takes up 2K of traffic hardly costs you money. What the real issue is, is second tier ISPs are paying for the traffic, and that's why they support these quite abusive practices of damaging legitimate business.

Damien Carrick: [Now almost reduced to paroxysms, but in the most extraordinary display of professionalism I have heard on radio, he makes only the slightest chortling sound as he chokes off another bout of laughter] Certainly sending out spam under Australian law currently is definitely a clear-cut legal activity. Do you say that it's also a legitimate, appropriate, ethical business as well?

Wayne Mansfield: [Righteous and indignant] When it's done correctly. And what we do is we collect emails from the public domain, places such as the phone book, the yellow pages or the web itself. We maintain the list, we maintain opt out facilities. We comply with the Privacy Act, we comply with all law in regard to direct marketing, so it is a legitimate, effective way to do business.

Damien Carrick: [Now regained his composure, since it is post-production, but his voice drips with sarcasm] Proud spammer, Wayne Mansfield, who runs marketing company T3.

Of course, this is a radio interview, so we can't see each others' faces. I have added the comments myself. They may not accurately reflect the emotions experienced by the participants. But they were what I imagined when I listened to the subtle inflections in the voices of the interviewer and interviewee.

The print media has also paid attention to T3 Direct. Articles in The Age and The West Australian, both on the face of it seem balanced and fair. They print Wayne Mansfield's point of view and state his dilemma. However if you read the copy carefully you may notice that the articles tend to dwell on the inconvenience he has suffered and they go into too much detail about the fact that Wayne is puzzled and perhaps even a little bit hurt at the reaction to his spamming activities. Which really is central to his problem

Poor sad, lonely Wayne Mansfield is indeed puzzled by the attention journalists pay to him. They listen attentively, ask probing questions, absorb the answers. Surely they are sympathetic to his point of view? But, as it transpires, they are just feasting on his misfortune like vultures. They go back to their workstations, file their copy and laugh themselves sick about it. They throw back their heads and are rocked all over with big uncompassionate belly laughs.

Journalists hate spammers too. In fact journalists loathe spammers.


Prick Me! ... Do I not Bleed?

There have been other articles in The Age and other print-media about self-confessed Aussie spammers that have been equally as unsympathetic. To date, I believe Wayne Mansfield is the first Australian spammer to seek protection from the law. There have been other cases overseas (esp USA) of spammers resorting to litigation.

What on earth is Wayne's offence that he could attract such venomous and relentless acrimony? Although spammers often engage in a host of illegal activities, that I won't go into here, spamming in its own right is not illegal. The offence actually amounts to no more than making a nuisance of one's self.

In a previous article (see the bibliography), I proposed that Internet users are very territorial about their inbox because they regard it as part of their (virtual) personal space. However I have since formed the opinion that this does not explain the level of antipathy expressed towards spammers. In light of this incredible hostility, I feel I have to modify the views I expressed in that essay.

I now believe that this antipathy is due to the fact that spammers have allowed themselves to be de-humanised. Worst of all they have deliberately sought to further de-humanise themselves in the mistaken belief that this will protect them. In fact the opposite is true.

We have all heard the jokes about telemarketers (see the bibliography). And sometimes we might imagine how we would like to play a trick on them. But few of us actually do. Telemarketers inevitably disarm us by engaging us in conversation. When the young girl, who is probably a student working her way through University, apologises profusely for disturbing you while you are eating your evening meal ... you can actually hear the apologetic tone in her voice! It's hard not to respond as if her apology was anything but genuine. After all you think, she is just trying to make a living. And it will only take five minutes to answer her questions ... You have been effectively disarmed. Later you might think to yourself "Why do I always treat these !@#$% telemarketers as if they are human?"

Need you ask? The answer is obvious. You treat them as human because they are human. It's all to do with interaction. When you interact with another human being, you experience empathy. Only a psychopath would fail to do so. This is especially true for speech and face to face communication, but it can work with written communication as well. And when you interact, you empathise. However, in certain circumstances, humans do not feel empathy with other humans. This usually comes about when a group has been de-humanised, often as a result of propaganda and/or during ritualised conflict (such as war).

Spammers, curiously enough, are the only group I know of that have chosen to de-humanise themselves. They have taken something that is already a cool medium, because it doesn't involve face to face or vocal interaction, and removed the human element from it. E-mail was supposed to be a two-way communication. Interaction, however minimal is the essential human component of the e-mail experience. Spammers have made it a one-way communication. Foolishly, they have gone out of their way to make sure that you cannot contact them! This means that the spammer can be objectified. You can think of a spammer as not human. As vermin. Which turns out to be rather unfortunate for the spammer. It means you can feel all right about treating the spammer in an inhumane manner. Not only are you devoid of compassion, you actually think it's quite amusing if you manage to inflict some inconvenience on the spammer!

When a group has been de-humanised, it is possible to subject them to all manner of cruelty. We feel no empathy for them because we perceive them as sub-human. I don't need to labour the point. The twentieth century has many examples of this all too human failing, and probably goes part of the way to explain why our species has been slow to recognise the importance of bio-diversity. And why we think that the only other (non-human) species with a right to exist are those that look "cute".

Furthermore for a spammer, it is difficult to regain his humanity, once labelled as a spammer. The mini tragedy/farce of the T3 Direct case is an illustration of this.

Given our propensity for collective cruelty towards de-humanised target groups, it is remarkable that spammers seem to have deliberately chosen to de-humanise themselves, by making it impossible to interact with the people they are annoying! It all seems very strange. Unless of course they want us to be cruel to them (?!).

Or perhaps they are just stupid.

Perhaps that is why Internet users hate spammers.


Turkeys Should Keep Their Heads Down During A Turkey Shoot

If you haven't guessed already, I come from a Land Down Under, where women glow and men thunder ... and spammers are proud!

I engaged in this series of articles a few months ago as part of setting up my website. In order to do research for these articles, I deliberately encouraged spam. At first, I just observed the spam as it came in. After I decided I'd had enough I started to take counter-measures. It soon became apparent that most spammers were what I would term amateurs. They were easy to find and terminate.

Please note that when I say terminate, I am not for one moment suggesting that you should don a pair of wrap-around sunglasses, arm yourself with a pump-action shotgun, barge into their domicile and blow them away whilst quipping "Hasta La Vista Baby!" from the side of your mouth. Although the court probably would be lenient when they discovered that the victim was a spammer. But no, the type of termination I am referring to is more benign (and much more satisfying). I am referring to the composition of a properly worded formal complaint, and the determination of the correct contact point. When the complaint is lodged the spammer's account will be terminated by his ISP, in accordance with the Terms of Service on his Agreement.

Of course, a really dedicated spammer will be prepared for this contingency. He will have a list of potential ISPs where he can get a replacement account. He might even have several aliases, false identities and false addresses (in numerous countries -- the Internet is global after all). Nevertheless terminating his account does cause him some inconvenience.

In the first article on spam I stated quite emphatically that the last thing we need is a law against spamming. Nevertheless there continues to be calls for laws against spamming. I see these almost every week in the mainstream media. And surprisingly, I still see such statements online.

Such a cri de coeur could only come from a person who has little or no understanding of the Internet. Either that or it is scuttlebut from a mischievous spammer, who is deliberately trying to confuse the issue. So let me say it again ...

We do not need laws against spamming because:

  1. Spamming is already banned by the Terms of Service in the agreement that most users sign to get connected to the Internet. If it wasn't in their agreement or they didn't actually sign one, then there will be such an agreement somewhere upstream.
  2. Let's pretend for one awful moment that spamming wasn't explicitly banned in the Terms of Service. In this frightful scenario we would be defenceless. Because at present, no law against spamming could be enforceable. Laws governing these types of commercial activity tend to have regional jurisdiction whereas the Internet is international. Any attempt to legislate against spamming would be ineffectual and would only make a laughing stock out of legislators.
  3. Even if it were possible to establish such legislation, the cost would be staggering. It would require a launch of lawyers and cost a fortune to get a spammer in another country disconnected even if you could find his true identity, which in the case of the more devious spammer could be difficult. And for the semi-legitimate spammer with a registered company name it might take years (allowing for half a dozen appeals and numerous delaying tactics which could encompass many courts and many continents).
  4. The truth of the matter is: No legal system can match the current system, where proven spammers, in most countries are disconnected almost immediately with no right of appeal at zero cost (except to the spammer - some ISPs will charge the spammer a disconnection fee).

In fact, it is mainly spammers who want legislation on spamming. Spammers would be the principal beneficiaries. And to date, spammers have proven more likely to resort to the legal system to try and resolve disputes. The people who own and run the Internet (all of us) already know how to treat spammers.

We treat them with the contempt they deserve.

And as an Australian let me say that I am proud that our spammers are proud. When you go on a turkey shoot, it makes it so much easier when the turkeys hold their heads high.

I'll let you in on a little secret ... Aussies actually hate spammers.


The Mortgage Brothers.

In the land of the free and the home of the brave, and the original home of spam it would seem, the turkeys have learned how important it is to keep their heads down. In the process of gathering material for this series of articles, I personally encountered only one professional spammer. This was Mr. Mortgage (see the bibliography for earlier samples of spam from Mr. Mortgage).

After studying three examples of Mr. Mortgage's work I decided it might be difficult to get him in my sights. Every batch seemed to come from an entirely unrelated IP address. I think Mr. Mortgage has some way of faking addresses or of taking over existing addresses. If anyone is interested in the headers, I still have them on file.

Here I am going to launch into speculation. But most of it is based on evidence. I am guessing that Mr. Mortgage is a composite of two distinct organisations. One of them is the loan shark who pays for the spam session. The other is the operator, who maintains systems for sending spam batches out. So as well as referring to them as the Mortgage Brothers, I will refer to the client (the one who pays for it) as Shark Mortgage, and I will refer to the spam operator (sort of like the IT division) as Hormel Mortgage. Here is how I think the operation works.

Shark Mortgage runs a very shady Financing Outfit. He operates a website with a temporary address. The website does not give information about Shark Mortgage's true identity. It just serves up forms which ask people to fill in their name, contact number and the amount they wish to borrow. If you live in the USA and are stupid enough (and desperate enough) to want to borrow money from them, you can fill in one of their web-forms, and presumably Shark Mortgage or one of his operatives will ring you and organise something.

They'd probably organise a lot of things for their victims ... oops, I mean customers.

Unfortunately I did not pay too much attention to Shark's identity. I did not even bother checking his site with a GUI browser (lynx is bullet-proof and a much safer vehicle for checking potentialy hostile sites). Still, I should have, because if I had been able to find out anything about his true identity, I would have posted it. You can view the full text of the last e-mail, I received from the Mortgage Brothers. (See the bibliography). If you know his true identity let me know and I will include it in this report.

I am sure he had a good reason for being so coy about his real identity.

Anyway, Shark Mortgage (as I have called him) has a list of e-mail addresses which have been mined by SpamBots. He may have actually purchased the list from Hormel Mortgage. The list and the details of the website are uploaded to Hormel's system and Hormel gets paid for every successful delivery.

Why do I think it works like this? Well after I decided to start blocking spam. I checked the material which had been sent by Hormel's spamming system. And I have to admit it looked fairly sophisticated. One potential flaw was that the To: tag always had <Undisclosed Recipients> in it. This is the standard tag which many MTAs often add to un-named mailing lists. Since nobody copies me on un-named mailing lists, I decided to block anything with this To: tag.

Within 28 days Hormel Mortgage had cracked my blocking criteria. He had started varying the To: tag. I felt flattered that he devoted so much attention to little old me. Just so he could deliver his important message about low-interest mortgage rates in the USA. And I reciprocated by paying special attention to his mate Shark, whose URL was advertised in each e-mail. With the aid of scripts I was able to reduce the time it took me to compose a formal complaint down to 5 minutes. I made sure that I got these off immediately after seeing any correspondence from the Mortgage Brothers.

It seems that the special care and attention I lavished on Shark Mortgage has started to pay off. They have since stopped sending me spam. This is why I suspect that there is a division of labour as I have outlined with the fictional names (above). And I would love to give you their real names, but they were careful not to reveal that information.

My reasoning is that only a professional who is getting paid on a per delivery basis would guard his deliveries so jealously. In actual fact he is ripping his client off, because he is no doubt aware that delivering spam to the .au domain is a waste of that particular client's money. Shark has specifically setup his operation for the US market. But his buddy (Hormel) doesn't care about that. He gets paid (by Shark) for each successful delivery. He couldn't care less what happens to the mail after that.

So much for honour amongst thieves. It seems even spammers hate spammers. Probably the only one who would give a spammer a good reference is his own mother. Since mothers went online, however, they may not be able to count on maternal affection for much longer ...


Protecting Your Computer From Spam

One of the other things that I see often in the mainstream media and on the Internet is advertisements for software that claims to "protect" your computer from spam. There seems to be increasing number of these, usually aimed at (Microsoft) client machines.

So I should take this opportunity to not endorse any of them. In the first article that I wrote on spam I stated:

The mailhub is the place to block spam.
So let me re-state this. The mailhub is the place to block spam! If spam has passed your mailhub, and entered your network, it is already taking up space on your mail server. The storage, administration and communication costs of the mail will be borne by the end-user (you) directly and/or indirectly. Furthermore the spammer has not been sent a 550 (reject) code from the mailhub's MTA. If he is a professional, he can count it as a successful delivery, and he can collect money from his intellectually impaired client as payment for the delivery. If on the other hand, the spammer is an amateur, he can feel a false sense of satisfaction at a job well done.

If the protection software running on your machine then downloads the e-mail from the mail server (further adding to the cost) and deletes it, you don't even know you have been spammed! Often the promotional copy for such anti-spam software will claim that they can "protect" your computer from spam using sophisticated analysis of keywords in the body of the text. (i.e. additional processing which adds to the cost).

If you don't even know that you have been spammed, and worse still you cannot see the full text of the original message, you will be unable to take action against the spammer. Such a cosmetic approach to spam merely attempts to conceal it by sweeping it under the carpet, and may even encourage further spamming. The spammer neither knows (nor cares) if you actually read his spam. If you feel you must use such software, it would be best to check the option that keeps the spam and allows you to view it.

In summary, only anti-spam software that runs with the MTA on your mailhub can be effective and discourage spamming. Such software should deliver a 550 (reject) code back to the spammer. With today's servers being permanently on-line, this means the delivery notification hits him while he is processing his spam batch. The entire e-mail is refused entry at your mail gateway before it even gets into your network. If any spam does get through, you need the full text of the message, so that the spammer can be pursued and terminated. Failing that his spammer client can be pursued and terminated.

If you are fortunate enough to have one, you could let your Mail Administrator have a crack at the spammer.

Mail Administrators detest spammers.


Conclusion.

In conclusion, let me say that these Spam Diaries have been, at times, entertaining. Now that the spam coming to my site has all but dried up, I am almost tempted to go out and look for some more.

Well maybe not just yet ...

The single most effective counter-measure was the removal of mailto: tags. Termination may not immediately stop a dedicated spammer ... but it will slow him down, and may eventually discourage him.

After reading so many horror stories about spam hubs on the Web, I was expecting some battles with spammer-friendly ISPs. In all the incidents I investigated, I didn't find one. Although some ISPs were very tardy to respond, and some had delegated management downstream without really making it clear that they had done so. Eventually I would manage to find a contact that would co-operate. I did find the convoluted trail of NICs, DNS delegation, and sub-leasing of various subnets to be a big ugly tin of worms. Each country, in fact each network seems to have a unique way of recording entries. Some use whois servers, some only support HTML queries, etc. In the small sample of spam that I experimented with the spammers seem to show a preference for ISPs in Korea, China, Spain and South America. This doesn't mean that the spammers who used them originated from these countries. Although there are a number of spammers who seem to be Korean and/or Chinese in origin (they spammed me in Chinese - a dead give away), many of these were very amateurish. In my sample the really die-hard spammers seemed to be of US origin. Including the one professional outfit, The Mortgage Bros.

So, I am not saying that spam-friendly ISPs do not exist, just that I didn't find any. Still they get listed in various places (likes MAPS) so they must be out there. My experience was that the majority of ISPs have anti-spam clauses in their usage agreements, and most will apply this policy (although some of them need a little prodding).

I did not encounter any Aussie spammers ... but I have it on good authority that they are out there.

In the first article that I wrote on the topic, I outlined several assumptions about spam and its' place on the web. I think that those assumptions still hold. However I have had to add the following modifications:

  1. I used to think that spamming was just mischief. The level of hostility towards spammers was far greater than I had anticipated. Hence the current article, in which I propose that there is a de-humanisation factor.
  2. There is more spam about than I had anticipated. Nevertheless I think that it is less than some commentators would have us believe.

In total, I have accumulated about 2MB of spam. Although, I am willing to admit that it could have continued growing at an increasing rate had I not started taking counter-measures. I can't explain the unexpected prevalence of spam, but I can add the observation that smart people have long since ceased wasting money on useless Internet promotions. Perhaps it takes longer for the message to get through to the less intelligent. Still I think it likely that spam will eventually die out. The biggest threat to spam is lack of money. Today, many businesses are doing it tough in the IT sector. And for any legitimate business, spam just doesn't make sense. Anyone who does their numbers will come to this conclusion.

In fact, even for criminal or shady outfits, spam is an each-way bet. Unless the criminal (or shady character) is a very skillful spammer, the spam could wind up leading law-enforcement agencies to his very door. And if any criminals do get caught this way, they won't be the first to under-estimate the intelligence of law-enforcement agencies while seriously over-estimating their own cleverness.

Still if I am right, and spam does start to decline, will we fight on against spammers? What happens when there is only a handful of them remaining? Will we press on till they are extinct or will we preserve a few for sport?

And another thing bothers me. In the process of chasing down spammers, I have experienced something akin to vindictiveness. Could it be my mask of objectivity has slipped a little ... to reveal that underneath, like the majority ... I just hate those Spam Turkey Bastards?


BIBLIOGRAPHY:

The Law Report Tuesday 22 October, 2002 with Damien Carrick. I presume that this interview was conducted by phone. I apologise for the gratuitous stage directions which are a fiction invented by yours truly. I have no wish to imply that Damien Carrick is anything but a highly professional and competent journalist. (Well, he managed to get through this interview without actually bursting into guffaws of hollow laughter ... he's gotta be a professional).

ABC News Online 14/10/02: Court rules against spam merchant. This is the initial news report of the court's ruling against T3 Direct, as it appeared on ABC News Online. There have been numerous copies filed by other news services including "The West Australian" (which being a local paper is closest to the event) and "The Age" (which is my local Melbourne paper). "The Age" has also run an article on a Melbourne Spammer, which was similar, except that he did not go to court. Unfortunately, I did not take a note of his name. (It was published a few months ago).

Gerry Patterson Reducing Spam Rage. The first article which I wrote on spam. I outlined my basic model, which I have since modified in a succeeding article titled Spam Sauce, which contains some of the early examples of The Mortgage Brothers work.

Author Unknown How To Get Rid Of Telemarketers. There are a large number of these jokes doing the rounds. Here is one example, that I saved. Basically, it lists the pranks that a subscriber might play on a telemarketer, if only you could switch off your default mode of human interaction. Of course, very few people would be capable of doing this, which is why it is humorous! A list of cruel tricks to use on spammers, on the other hand, would not be regarded as humour. It would be considered an Operations Manual. This being the point I am trying to make about de-humanisation.

Gerry Patterson How To Avoid Being Labelled A Spammer. A set of of guidelines of basic netiquette for the socially inept, who have had a change of heart and now genuinely want to reform themselves.

PGTS Feedback Some More Examples of Spam. Here is another spam from the Mortgage Brothers and a contribution from a 419-scammer. It also has that e-mail, the one from Dan Byrnes which kick-started this article.

Abuse.net Network Abuse Clearing House. The definitive resource for fighting spam. Note: This is not a site to which you report spam. It is a resource that tells you where and how to report abuse. If you are going on a Turkey Shoot, here is where you can stock up on munitions.

SPEWS.org Spam Prevention Early Warning System. Bedecked in floral print dress, boxing gloves and army boots, Aunty SPEWS is the Bete Noir of blacklists. It is maintained by an indefatigable secret army of volunteers.

Gerry Patterson A Few More Inches Please ... Spam is an integral link in the supply chain for Internet Porn. This article examines how it might work for "PillMedics".