Permission Marketing: A Loaded Term?

I was talking to a group of friends the other day, and the topic of discussion turned to the term "Permission Marketing." How useless it is as a measure of best practices. Every ESP (email service provider) or direct sender uses the term, making it entirely neutral as a measure of whether or not a company is a spammer, or if they're a provider that would allow spammers on their network.

Wholesale e-mail data? Uh, no.

In Dissecting a Pitch that Smells, Ken Magill tears apart an email list offer that smells too good to be true. Ken runs down the myriad of reasons why you should never trust anybody wanting to sell you an email list, from the open question of who the vendor actually is, how they hide behind anonymizing WHOIS services and PO boxes, and how their sample data is obviously garbage.

Not to mention, if any of those email addresses are indeed valid, they didn't sign up to receive emails from anyone who buys that list. Making it spam.

Ask Al: Spam From Me To Me?

Dennis writes, "I don't send these various emails under my AOL address, but other people get them, and I get them myself. How can I notify AOL of this and hopefully get it stopped. I've changed my password, which was recommended, but such emails continue." 

Do you use SpamAssassin?

If you're a SpamAssassin user, I recommend you swing over to my DNSBL Resource site and read about the dead bl.open-whois.org blacklist -- it's used by default in up-to-date SpamAssassin installs, and it's probably slowing down final delivery of your inbound email messages due to DNS timeouts.

Yahoo handles email for Verizon?

No, not exactly. But, according to Mickey Chandler, it looks as though Verizon customers can have their account configured so that mail sent to their Verizon.net mailbox actually lands at AOL, Yahoo or MSN/Windows Live. Confused? So am I. Read all about it over at Mickey's great Spamtacular blog.

Neat Trick: Forwarding Webmail into Work Email

I've worked at a number of places over the years, with a ton of good folks, many of whom I consider friends. I keep in touch with just about all of them, via your typical social networking channels, but also directly via email. (After all, email is in my blood.)