Spam, missing messages and filters.

Laura & Dave
Thu, 02 Dec 2004 18:16:52 PST
Chris Council and all
     The recent email ragarding BX 87 from Chris brought up a real 
problem facing group users.  I sent email to Chris about the typo in the 
BX numbers, only to receive the return email below.  Earthlink allows 
(requires?) the use of "White Lists" to block spam.  Senders' names must 
be on the list before email will be actually delivered to Chris. 
Obviously, Chris has added the PBS list to her list, or else she 
wouldn't be getting PBS list postings.  I don't have Earthlink, so I 
don't know if Chris is informed that there is suspect email, and can 
request that it be forwarded.
     The problem is that when individual members such as myself try to 
respond "off list", we're blocked.  The result is either lost email or a 
HUGE increase in PBS list messages that are really for one person only.
     I know that spam is a big problem, and wish I had a complete 
solution, but I don't; however, the use of a "White List" is only really 
good for one-to-one correspondence, where all mail is from known sources.
     What we do is use filters, which look for key words in the subject, 
senders or bodies of messages, and automatically reject those we are 
sure we don't want.  Some things get through, but we don't miss things 
we want from new sources either (such as a new email address from an old 
friend, people sending from a library or internet cafe computer, people 
refered to you by mutual acquaintences ...).  Almost all mail programs 
have filters, useful also for pre-sorting your mail into folders.  The 
first filter (of about 20 that each piece of email is compared to) on 
our computer is called "Killer of obvious Spam", and gets rid of a long 
list of things that I can't list here, or people using filters that 
search the actual messages won't get this email.
     I hope this helps some people get desired messages, especially PBS 

Dave Brastow

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