Tag: Gmail

Stuff I’ve been paying attention to even though spring was very fishy

It’s been a very fishy spring, particularly with the whole FIBFest bit, but that doesn’t mean work has gone unattended. Well at least paying attention (which reminds me that I used to get sent to the dean’s office a lot for disrupting class)….


  • WordPress 3.0: The 5 Most Important New Features [Mashable] – More great stuff afoot. Why anyone would PAY for content management system software with WordPress around is beyond me.
  • Still Don’t Know What Cyberwar Is… But The US Has A Cyberwar General Now [Techdirt] – It’s probably best you don’t know either. No need to worry about some enemy types crashing the electrical grid…or better yet, launching weapons.
  • Gmail Ditched By Major University [Information Week] – Others followed suit, and I suspect it was a knee-jerk reaction. But to what?


  • What Business is Wall Street In ? [Blog Maverick] – The analogy that traders are like hackers is spot on. Problem is, a select few hackers are spoiling the show for individual investors, and therefore businesses looking for capital.
  • Tax Hikes and the 2011 Economic Collapse [Wall Street Journal] – A flurry of tax breaks come to an end soon. That “Curve Guy” postulates that all hell will break loose soon thereafter.

Fly Fishing

    Haven’t you had enough already? Seriously?

  • Book Review – The Flycaster Who Tried To Make Peace With The World [A Bad Backcast…And Other Inane Musings] – Rob Dee says Randy Kadish’s philosophical journey take you along with. The book is available for the Kindle now too!
  • Report: Most Anglers Don’t Use Social Media [MidCurrent] – No surprise there, because the interwebs are all about telling the truth!
  • Casting for Recovery Selected for Federal Campaign Charity Listing [Angling Trade] – “The Combined Federal Campaign is the only authorized workplace charitable giving drive for employees in the federal employment.” Included are civilian, postal and military sectors.


On the first day of Christmas my Google gave to me..

..a violation of my privacy.

I don’t think this is a big deal, and it’s certainly not surprising.

UPDATE: Mathew Ingram says get a grip. A poll of Mashable readers rings similarly.

UPDATE 2: Paul Kedrosky wasn’t surprised either.

Newer Gmail Accounts Getting Disabled?

Stan says:

One thing to keep in mind here is that Gmail is free, and the old proverb about getting what you paid for applies here.

Michael says: even if it was paid service, the sheer scale would preclude any quick reaction for your otherwise mission critical email, and the terms of service would preclude any liability for your loss.

Turn Gmail Into a Social Network Hub

Yes, if you really want to parse your social network ever further online, you can engage Gmail for help.

Just keep an eye out for malware while you’re doing it.

What Google should really do with Postini

Google bought another: first FeedBurner, and now Postini. I say another because these are both Mobius/Foundry Group/Brad Feld/Ryan McIntyre related companies – and congratulations are surely well deserved. I won’t comment on what Google should do with Postini – Fred Wilson has already done that, and I’m not particularly “spam inclined”. But I will say some of Fred’s comments are spot on, while others could use a little work:

  • False positives on validation emails are a big problem. But that’s really an issue for those sending the email.
  • Valid items in the spam folder are only a problem if you receive such enormous volumes of email from such a wide array of senders at a single email address that you are 1) certain something really important is falling through the cracks, and 2) rarely bother to clean it out your spam folder the first place.
  • Reputation will remain a problem until 1) the powers that be agree on a open, royalty free, inter-operable standard, or 2) Google listens to Fred while everyone on the planet simultaneously switches to Gmail.

The perception seems to be there is only one box. The real winner is going to be the one that thinks outside of it, and convinces the casual email user to follow suit.

UPDATE: More background on Postini, from Ryan.

Gmail handing out contact lists

I have precisely three contacts in my database, and one of those steadfastly refuses being synced to the Blackberry so I’m not worried either way. But for the very popular set who also happen to be cheap enough to use a free email service and silly enough to store their Rolodex in one, Gmail might pose a problem.

Gmail’s JSON platform allowed websites to hijack users’ contact lists – the site appended what’s termed a “callback” variable in the URL, and when a user that was logged into Gmail came by the hacker extracted said information. Harvesting with a twist.

Google was quick to fix the problem, but the underlying risk remains. If you leave your data on someone else’s servers, you are beholden to their security force, however strong or weak it may be. It isn’t the first time something like this has happened at a large free email service provider, and it won’t be the last.

My veterinarian and pizza delivery guy are still safe.

No free lunch from Gmail

Sophos is warning of a phishing email offering $500 from Google’s Gmail service.

Either phishers are getting desperate, or stupid, as this has got to be one of the lamest phishing exploits ever. But with Google releasing new products all the time, even the most ridiculous of attempts is bound to garner a buck or two. Of course, there will be a politician, someplace, who will blame Google for someone, someplace, getting scammed. With any luck, the idiot who gets taken will be a teen, and then Google can join MySpace in the legislative roundup.

Spam blocking supercedes usability

People are so annoyed with spam, that they seem willing to give up usability for a little better protection. Case in point, Yahoo! Mail versus Gmail.

Interestingly, I use both services for certain things, and I have found both pretty good at filtering spam. I’ve also found both about as useable as you can expect from a webmail interface. Nevertheless, I’ll stick to POP, as I don’t really care about the storage capabilities I get from outside services. I’d rather be able to drag and drop an mbox folder to my desktop, zip and encrypt – lock it away for safekeeping, away from any potential prying eyes, but still have ready access myself.

That’s my idea of usability.

SpamCop Targeting “Organized Crime”

First it was Google’s Gmail, and now it is Microsoft. SpamCop is blacklisting big companies as though they are the lead enforcer on an organized crime taskforce.

The bad of this is that a lot of helpless users are going to get their email bounced. The good part of this is that free email services are a haven for spammers, no matter what they say about security. Maybe this will force them to tighten up their ships a little more.

SpamCop fills the paddy-wagon

And again, its GMail users in the shackles. SpamCop recently added several Gmail servers to its blacklist. The reason: some spam came from those servers, and Google doesn’t pass the originating IP address of the email user. They prefer instead to push their own IP in place of the standard “X-Originating-IP” header line delivered from competing webmail providers, so SpamCop added the whole server(s).

I am not sure what Google’s beef over privacy is here, but it makes little sense to me.