[linux-elitists] AOL says goodbye to AT&T/Comcast and residential mail spools

Shawn McMahon smcmahon@eiv.com
Fri Apr 11 10:24:27 PDT 2003

On Fri, Apr 11, 2003 at 11:48:22AM -0400, Aaron Sherman said:
> Some poorly configured sites will do what AOL has done in part by
> absolutely accepting a listing in one or a small number of DNSBLs as an
> indication of message quality before looking at the message (or in some
> extreme cases, even before the envelope, as AOL does -- which BTW is
> also a failure to obey the RFCs due to the fact that they cannot know if
> the mail was to be destined for postmaster).

I'm not aware of any doing that.  However, there are many sites
absolutely accepting a listing in one or a small number of DNSBLs as an
indication that a message was delivered from a dynamic IP range.  This
indicates nothing about quality of a specific message, but it DOES cut
down on a lot of spam while only inconveniencing people who are choosing
to do something they know is going to inconvenience them.  Whether you
choose to do soemthing about the inconvenience is up to you; although
saying that the way you'll deal with them refusing your mail is to
refuse to send them any more mail seems reasonable, albeit not likely to
have much impact.

> Some even more poorly configured sites will break the SMTP spec in the
> same way that AOL does (not sending a 554 or waiting for a QUIT to
> disconnect).

I haven't seen anybody attempt to defend AOL's actions here; all I did
was state that if you attempt to send email direct from a dynamic IP,
you will see a non-trivial and growing number of rejections.  That is a
fact.  AOL not following RFCs shouldn't be a shock to anyone except the
most naive among us.

Shawn McMahon     | Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill,
EIV Consulting    | that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any
UNIX and Linux	  | hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, to assure
http://www.eiv.com| the survival and the success of liberty. - JFK
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