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Re: Recent Spam

At 11:55 AM 1/4/00 -0500, redtenbacher@csi.com wrote:
>Recently, the level of spam on this mailing list has increased a
>lot. I don't know who the operator/owner of this list is,

It's me. I'm listed in the greeting message everyone receives when subscribing.

>  but it
>should be quite easy to:
>(a) limit postings to this list to subscribers and
>(b) ban any repeated spammers like "*www11.heha.net",
>     "*ns.secondary.com", "*163.net", "*263.net" and "*cn.com".

Easy, yes. Proper for an IETF WG, no. Let's look at each proposal.

(a) The IESG has already said that they do not want any posting 
restrictions for WG mailing lists, specifically with this case. As someone 
else has already pointed out, they post from a different address, and 
they'd need to somehow "register" for each address they want to post from. 
Not only is this burdensome for the list admin, it means that if someone 
really needs to post an important note about the protocol but is on the 
road, they could be delayed by many days.

(b) ns.secondary.com is the mailer for this list; restricting it would be 
kinda bad. Restricting by suspected domain names would also possibly 
prevent legit posters.

>I am moderating 2 mailing lists of my own on "onelist.com", and
>it is quite easy to do such banning/filtering there. Therefore,
>if the "majordomo" software should not be able to do this (I have
>not checked it) we might consider switching to another list host.

If the WG chair wants to move the list, that's obviously no problem. I 
suspect, however, that if he moves it and imposes restrictions that are not 
appropriate for WG mailing lists, this would not be a good thing.

>  (Who should fight spam
>successfully if even the IETF members can't do it?)

Blocking spam and fighting spam are quite different. IMC is on the 
forefront of informing people about the technical measures available for both.

>As this list is not a support list for OpenPGP but some sort of
>"standards working group", we can easily restrict the posters to
>subscribers of the list, and then ban repeated spammers from the
>subcriber database.

I wish this were the case, but it's not. If you want to take this issue to 
the IESG (yet again), feel free to do so.

--Paul Hoffman, Director
--Internet Mail Consortium