Tag: MoveOn

Activists spin spam filter functions? Or simply blocked by angry AOL?

Declan McCullagh over at Politech makes note of the problems the DearAOL campaign is having getting through to AOL subscribers, and the email threads he has posted are worth a quick read.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation sent out a press release claiming AOL is deliberately blocking all messages with “www.DearAOL.com” in the body. The EFF makes no mention of the fact that AOL subscribers themselves might be responsible, by marking the unsolicited messages they received as spam. They also quoted Wes Boyd of MoveOn regarding the issue, but failed to mention that MoveOn has a reputation for less than diligent list management.

Rather than debate the issue, I’d like to hear from some AOL subscribers on this one. If you are an AOLer, and you marked one of these “DearAOL” messages as spam, let the world know. And to be fair, if you are an AOL subscriber who opted-in for these messages, only to have them blocked thereafter, speak up as well (and make sure to say whether you added the sender to your acceptable senders list too).

Game over on AOL pay scheme – or is it?

AOL announced today that they will allow non-profits to send certified email though their system for free, which may quiet some of the recent anti-paid-email movement’s constituents. Or will it?

The next few days reaction to AOL’s move will tell everyone whether folks like MoveOn really care about an open internet, or just want free access themselves. Watch for spin if the DearAOL group splinters.

Or maybe that is exactly what AOL wanted them to do.

AOL pay-for-email battle hitting high notes

The fight against AOL’s Goodmail implementation is hitting a crescendo, with more groups joining the MoveOn.org fight (a total 15MM aggregate members, at someone’s count).

I don’t have a problem with any of these groups, but I do have a problem with this statement:

“This is a big step in the direction of a locked-down Internet,” says Eli Pariser, executive director of MoveOn, an advocacy group that sends 3 million to 10 million messages per week. “If this had been around a few years ago, MoveOn would never have existed.”

So what you are saying, Eli, is you grew on the backs of others, but even though those backs (and those of their paying subscribers) are breaking under the strain of spammers, phishers, and other lethal elements transported via email, you still demand a free ride?

Nice. Let AOL bear the full burden of cost to shut down operations like this, while you go about your merry way.

Sorry, but that is not how the world works. Wake up, adapt to the changing conditions, or maybe, just move on.

There is a bottom line to all this – email is dying, particularly as a mass medium. Instead of heading down a “slippery slope” what we are heading into is a whitelisted world. Like the phone banks before it (decimated by the do-not-call registry), email is quickly becoming an ineffective means to gather support from the unaffiliated.

I suggest everyone start thinking long and hard about technologies like RSS, that is unless they are hell bent on resisting inevitable change.