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The Internet Communications Spam Idle Technology

7 Days In Email Hell 213

Posted by samzenpus
from the emails-of-note dept.
jfruhlinger writes "If you first went on line in the '90s, you probably remember a time when every e-mail you received was exciting, or at least relevant, and was worthy of your personal attention. One brave writer decided to take that approach to his present-day overflowing inbox. He read every email he received and dealt with them all, either by replying, filing, or unsubscribing. He even scanned his spam filter for false positives. It was a lot harder than he thought it would be."
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7 Days In Email Hell

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  • by Immostlyharmless (1311531) on Wednesday July 06, 2011 @10:49PM (#36678800)
    This is why I have 3 accounts.

    1).One that goes for the really important stuff. IE Financial related stuff and my family. No one else gets it.

    2.) The one that I give to friends and sign up for things online that I really want, are legitimate online retailers I use a lot. Might be spammed, but probably not.

    3.) Everything else, IE Anything sketchy, porn, places I may or may not visit again, etc.

    Pretty much anything I'm not expecting from the 3rd one goes straight to the round file, and after a day of my filter learning to deal with the latest influx of crap from whatever trash I've signed up for recently I don't even have to mess with it anymore. The 2nd one rarely gets gets a handful of spam each week, and the first one gets 1 or 2 spam mails a month.
  • Stupid (Score:5, Interesting)

    by geek (5680) on Wednesday July 06, 2011 @10:49PM (#36678802) Homepage

    People that get that much email get it solely to make themselves feel important. They walk around telling all their friends about the 400 emails they got today. They are the same people that have 30,000 friends on Facebook and think they really do have 30,000 friends.

    I've been getting email for over 17 years and I've never gotten that much in a day short of when I was active on various mailing lists. Even then, i didn't get that much.

    Stop giving your email address out to every bozo website that wants it and spam will virtually disappear. Stop subscribing for every stupid news feed and commercial website and your mailbox won't fill up. I've had the same address for 3 years at this point and I get 15-30 emails a day, most of which are important and valid. The ones that aren't are from my mom.

  • Your own domain (Score:5, Interesting)

    by coldmist (154493) on Wednesday July 06, 2011 @10:56PM (#36678870) Homepage

    This is why everyone should have their own domain.

    I have catch-all email for my domain, so if an email is sent to it that isn't recognized, it goes into my catchall account.

    The nice part of this, is I can create '', and I know exactly who sent it, and/or who shared out my contact information.

    You can do throw-away emails for single event cases, or just use a generic '' for sites you don't care about.

  • Re:Your own domain (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday July 06, 2011 @11:22PM (#36679054)

    I use the + system in gmail ( to filter mine. Found out that Musician's Friend either sold my address or someone stole a bunch from them. I called them on it and they denied it, claiming that everyone gets spam and that it was bound to happen sooner or later. I showed them my email address and the email address that I gave them. I never received another response, and no longer deal with them thanks to that.

  • Re:Your own domain (Score:5, Interesting)

    by stephanruby (542433) on Thursday July 07, 2011 @12:00AM (#36679290)

    Spamgourmet [] allows you to do this on-the-fly, no personalized domain necessary.

    Let's say your free email address at spamgourmet is

    Wen registering at Newegg, you'd just write and spamgourmet would automatically forward your email to your real email address. The system even allows you to reply to the forwarded message from your real email address, and spamgourmet will act as the intermediary removing your original email address from the message. Spamgourmet even has more capabilities than that, for instance you could just write instead that would mean you're only expecting 12 emails from Newegg, not a single more and spamgourmet would just keep a reverse counter (and of course, the system allows you to change your mind, for instance you could just decide to whitelist any of the emails coming from Newegg even if you had it set to only receive 12 emails from them).

    And of course, some web sites have been banning spamgourmet email address from their registration form, but that doesn't really matter, spamgourmet has many alternative domains you can use, and you can even donate your own domain to the cause if you wanted.

    And by the way, the system is free and open source, so you could even set this system up on your own servers if you wanted (not that you'd really need to).

  • by slimjim8094 (941042) <slashdot3@justconnected . n et> on Thursday July 07, 2011 @01:02AM (#36679636)

    This. A thousand times this. I have a real address that goes to personal acquaintances and is not visible publicly. Any address at my domain is valid; I have apple@, radioshack@, facebook@, slashdot1@ and so on. Anything goes, I can use it in person at stores that want email addresses and so on. Checking the 'to' header, or the 'x-original-to' header (on sketchy emails that aren't correctly addressed) makes it easy to see who gave out my email, or which forum's been hacked. Most recently, it was the US Speedskating team's website - I donated to them last year with speedskating@ and have been getting spam there.

    But people are, as usual, the weak link. I get the very occasional spam in my "real" inbox because somebody's gotten a virus, or had a weak Hotmail password or something. Thankfully not much so far, but that could change. I'm not quite sure how to deal with this, and am open to suggestions... but you're exactly right, no address is safe when the people who have it can't keep it.

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