[Mailman-Developers] Interesting study -- spam on postedaddresses...

Jay R. Ashworth jra@baylink.com
Thu, 21 Feb 2002 16:57:00 -0500

On Thu, Feb 21, 2002 at 08:28:13AM -0500, Damien Morton wrote:
> > On Wed, 20 Feb 2002, Damien Morton wrote:
> > > I still think the email-address-as-jpeg solution is prohibitively 
> > > expensive to reverse; effectively impossible for machines, entirely 
> > > easy for people.
> > 
> > But it does have drawbacks.
> > 
> > It only works with graphical browsers.
> This is true. We are in the 21st century now. Expecting a graphical
> client isnt such a huge leap of faith, unless we allow ourselves to be
> guided by recidivist or luddite lynx users and their ilk.

And Chuq says *I'm* arrogant.  There are lots of people who run their
graphical browsers with J/Jscript off for security and images off for
the same reason (much faster browsing) that I use Lynx.

And see above about wireless browsers, and below about the blind.

And get the phuque over yourself.

> > It can't be enlarged for people that have poor vision.
> This is true, for the public archives.
> > It can be reverse-engineered -- all they have to do is decode 
> > a single font, then they're all simple to snag.
> Assuming you use a single font.
> Assuming you don't add some noise to the resulting image.
> Assuming you don't do some geometric distortion to the resulting image.
> To reverse engineer, a harvester would have to examine pretty much every
> image it finds, OCR it with some fantastic military grade image
> recognition software, and see if theres an email address buried in
> there.

It doesn't matter, really.  

> As I said, "prohibitively expensive to reverse"

And just imaging -- yet another way to make 15 bytes into 15 kilobytes.
Yeah, the network operators oughtta like that.  You get a commission?

> Replacing the email addresses with a link to a webform would be another,
> perfectly acceptable solution, assuming you can get over your own
> objections to web forms.

We seem to keep conflating the "admin mailto problem" with the "list
member mailto problem"; they have fairly widely diverging solutions.

Could we please be a bit more cautious about that?

-- jra
Jay R. Ashworth                                                jra@baylink.com
Member of the Technical Staff     Baylink                             RFC 2100
The Suncoast Freenet         The Things I Think
Tampa Bay, Florida        http://baylink.pitas.com             +1 727 647 1274

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