Daily Illuminator

December 28, 2003: Spam: A Rant

I got home Saturday evening and downloaded 580 e-mail messages that had built up since Wednesday. Of these, 50 were not spam.

This would be less remarkable if I had not managed to access my e-mail queue on Thursday, at which time I deleted 300 accumulated spam messages -- meaning that over 94% of the nearly 900 messages I received in the last four days were robo-generated ad crap.

For those of you (very few among our fans, I'm sure) who claim that spam is a legitimate way of doing business, or worse, that it is in some warped way "free speech," I'll just point out that this is not an atypical week, and that everyone at SJ Games spends hours of time every month doing nothing but trashing spam. (We have a filter on our incoming mail; it is not perfect. We hope to improve it soon.) This is not free speech . . . it is wasting SJ Games thousands of dollars every month in staff time alone, as we are forced to sluice our e-mail through a sieve to find the occasional real message glinting in our inbox.

Yes, there are technical solutions that we can implement on our end, but please take a moment early in the new year to contact your appropriate state and national legislators and let them know that we are tired of weak, ineffective non-solutions to the spamdemic. It's time to shut these knaves down.

(Incidentally, if you sent me an e-mail message and I haven't replied to it by the second week of January, you might want to resend it . . . it's possible that it was an innocent victim of the Great Spam Purge.)
-- Andrew Hackard, Managing Editor

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