Alec Saunders, Markus Göbel, and have all reported about problems with the so-called “anti-spam” service Boxbe:
Alec Saunders: “Boxbe’s spam. A fatal mistake for them and me”.
My email box is jammed with people saying “can you make this thing stop”, “you gotta make this stop”, “I’m really pissed”. Twitter is burning up with Boxbe messages. And those are the people that care enough. I don’t know how many people have just added me to their spam list.
The worst part? There’s no way to opt-out of the service once you’ve signed up. I can’t tell it to stop. I can’t tell it to cancel my account.
After I signed up to Boxbe, more than 500 of my email contacts received annoying invitations, saying “I’m using Boxbe to screen my email and I’ve added you to my approved Guest List. Can you take a minute to make sure your contacts can reach me?”. Many people have received this message already six times. Now I get emails back from buddies saying “could you please stop spamming me and my girlfriend? Boxbe sucks!”.
This sounds like what happened five years ago with Spam Arrest (see “SpamArrest Is A Spammer!SpamArrest Is A Spammer!”)
Beware Spam Arrest Users, Spam Arrest is spamming your contacts! If you are a Spam Arrest user, did you know that the company that is helping you receive less spam is actually contributing to the spam problem by spamming the very people you communicate with?
To add insult to injury, sending to firstname.lastname@example.org results in a sender verification request email, asking you to go through the Spam Arrest verification process, which will put you on the Spam Arrest Spam Mailing List to receive future spams!
It was a disaster then – I wonder what made Boxbe think it would not be a disaster now?
Here’s an example of the reception this idea got back in 2003 when Spam Arrest tried it:
- Steve Atkins: http://static.samspade.org/spamarrest.html also titled Spam Arrest is a Spammer. He claims the above spam sent out by Spam Arrest is a violation of California state law (click to read about the laws and decide for yourself)
- Declan McCullagh‘s Politech: http://www.politechbot.com/cgi-bin/politech.cgi?name=spamarrest.
- Carl Bussjaeger: Spam Arrest: Busted
- Broadband Reports: When Anti-Spammers Spam
- AVN Online: Is the Spam Fighter a spammer itself?
I’ve already added Boxbe to my spam filtering, so I’ll never see anything they send me.
To learn more about my views on the spam problem, you may want to check out my Spam Rants.