[Python-Dev] mail.python.org black listed ?!

Thomas Wouters thomas@xs4all.net
Sat, 21 Jul 2001 01:21:32 +0200

On Fri, Jul 20, 2001 at 02:31:45PM -0400, Guido van Rossum wrote:
> > I think the whole black list exercise has been a net waste of time
> > and certainly has done little to stem the flow of email spam.

> Amen.  My thoughts exactly.

I disagree, but for a very simple reason: I don't block based on blacklists,
I flag :) Blocking on the SMTP server is a bad idea, IMO too, though I can
understand that people running a single, small SMTP server want to block
spam at the earliest moment. But by flagging it, I can save it to a
different folder, or send auto-replies, or just colour it in my mail client

We have a basic procmailrc which does a whole boatload of spamchecks (ORBS,
RBL, DUL, RSS, various header-checks for illegal ipadresses, well known spam
software, well known addresses like friend@public.com, buffer-overflow
attempts, etc) and simply adds a header to my emails, which I then give a
scoring and color based on what spamtests it triggered. No single spam test
is 100% accurate, but I haven't seen false positives on something that has
ORBS or RBL *and* DUL, RSS, or one or more of the others.

Sadly, ORBS is exit, and MAPS is turning into a commercial service. We're
still debating, at work, whether to pay for it or not :P

If people are interested in the procmailrc, and the  perl script (sorry) it
uses, let me know and I'll see if we can distribute it. It's already
available to XS4ALL customers, together with a simple script to report spam
to Spamcop, which is especially easy to use from inside mutt :)

Thomas Wouters <thomas@xs4all.net>

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