Spam, Porn and the rest...

From: Seppo Niemi (
Date: Mon Feb 04 2002 - 15:20:49 EET

Dear all,

there has been some discussion lately about the amount of spam on this
mailing list. This has indeed been a problem, until lately. Now the
situtation has improved, however. Since the deactivation of the two old
addresses ( and, there doesn't seem to have been a
single spam on this list.

This is because a Realtime Blocking list (RBL, see
is being used to reject mails from hosts that are known to deliver
spam. This is quite effective - during January there were 300 rejected
emails. However, once in a while some spam will inevitably slip through
because spammers find hosts which are not yet blacklisted.

The only solution for a completely spam-free list is moderation. This
means that somebody must read and approve every single email that gets
sent to the list. This is not an option at the moment, becase the list
is being managed by two individuals on their spare time. Spare time is a
rare commodity these days. Moderation would also mean delays ranging
from a few hours to serveral days.

Another suggested solution is to allow posting only from addresses that
are already subscribed to the list. This is technically possible, but it
wouldn't work. There is a variety of email servers and clients out there
who handle sender addresses differently. An email address on the list
could be '' but his mailer uses something like
'' as the sender address - thus poor John
wouldn't be able to send anything to the list. And sender addresses can
be easily forged and spammers can therefore bypass this check without

In my opinion, the current solution with RBL and an open subscribe/post
policy is the best. If you are not happy with it, you are free to


PS. There seemed to be a mail loop which resulted in a couple of
    duplicate messages during the past few days. I think this has now
    been fixed. There was (again) an NT-server with a Micro$oft email
    software involved.

For more information about the rp-ml, see

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