META:unsolicited mail/forced keywords

Eugene Leitl (
Sat, 11 Jan 1997 23:19:38 +0100 (MET)

(list seems to be down (too often, imo), ignore this if you see it twice)

Doubtlessly I am not the only one who is plagued by a stream of directly
mailed advertisements. Though one has been pavlov's into recognizing them
in milliseconds and then reflexively hitting delete, they are still a major

Apart from deleting mailto: tags from one's page (which are now being
hunt for by robots) one might be tempted to abstain from posting altogether,
(especially from newsgroups) but this is certainly not a constructive

What to do?

Of course, one might create two accounts, one public, merely for posting,
incoming mail being sent to /dev/null by default and a secret one for truly
private communication, but this is also messy.

A simple solution for protecting mailing list participants might be by
morphing a list sever and an anonymous remailer together. At subscription
time, each subscriber is allocated a list-local alias. Each incoming
poster's address is substituted by an alias automagically. Mail from
non-subscribes goes directly to /dev/null. This also handles mail header
forging, since no one (but the list server) actually knows the nonalias mail
address, thus being forced to regress to mere guessing.

Is there a hole in the scheme?

Another thing which worries me is that subject keywords are voluntary. If
we'd all be using emacs, a script could be written which demands a
selection from a pop-up list, but I guess this is just wishful thinking.
Anyway, a _limited_ (new keywords created by voting) keyword token list
would be very nice for a future mailer to have.