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Old June 18th, 2003, 09:49 AM
JSample JSample is offline
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I will offer a “very brief” reason for each of the constraints that we posed to Hal. You don’t have to agree that they are good reasons, but in our mind they are valid.

1. SPAM was not an issue on the old site due to active moderation. Wiley does not have the dedicated resources to moderate a site that is generating hundreds postings a day after only a few weeks. With strong authentication we retain the ability to ban offenders, and make sure that if a user says something on the forum that there is no room for claiming someone else spoofed their account. For the future of the site we feel that SPAM is an ever increasing threat an needs to be addressed now rather than after it becomes a problem for everyone on the site.

2. Whether you have been affected yet or not, SPAMMERS are using address spoofing more and more each day. In order to not aid spammers in anyway, we keep everyone’s e-mail address on the site a secret so they cannot be harvested. If you reply through e-mail and the header information has your e-mail address in it, then we are just inviting SPAMMERS to come and take your addresses for sending their messages later.

3. Overquoting is a minor annoyance in e-mail, but on a web forum it makes the messages almost un-readable. While there are many of you that would only use email given the opportunity, there are an equal amount that prefer to only use the website and keep their mailboxes clutter free. We need to make sure that in fixing the site for one group we don’t turn around and break it for the other.

4. I believe that constraint number one ensures that the site will be very SPAM resistant. Also when you and number 2, this site become a model for what every SPAMMER on the internet DOESN’T want to see.

5. Obviously this is a threat to everyone using the system, but also one that every list based system has solved for. Their solutions should be easily replicated.

6. As funny as it may sound this is a new “policy” that many .GOV and legal sites have adopted. Wiley sends out almost a million newsletters each week from etips.dummies.com and our Cliffnotes etips. We are seeing more and more replies that simply state “your email has been successfully delivered to someone@somewhere.gov” Obviously no one wants to see the forums or their mailboxes cluttered with these.

7. This is a fairly simple requirement but with the registration system requiring valid email address this should not be a major problem on the site.

8 This one is a simple support issue. MSSMTP and Lyris are the technologies that we currently support and have already invested in. If a solution is found that uses sendmail for example, we would have a problem supporting it properly.

I hope you can now see why we have made these constraints and hopefully assist Hal in finding a resolution to them.

Thank you,

James Sample
Director, IT-Infrastructure
Wiley Publishing, Inc.