Sprint Mailbombing Update 3PM EST

Randy Bush randy at psg.com
Sat Jan 4 21:32:00 UTC 1997

Hi Barry,

> Go ahead, tell me again how this is nothing but a spam whine

For a friend, sure.

Barry, it's nothing but a spam whine.


But more seriously.  

> three days, thousands and thousands of messages, all being bounced back,
> non-stop, and Sprint refuses to lift a finger or acknowledge that this is
> an operational problem.

Well, it's not really an Ops problem.  Ops folk worry about packets and
stuff like that, not social and legal issues such as this.  Within
organizations such as Sprint, they're usually not empowered to take the
kinds of actions you want.

And you seem to have the attack effectively repelled for the moment.  So a
more cautious but longer lasting approach might be worth considering.  E.g.
Sprint management might need some constructive help to get an anti-spam
policy into their customer contracts.  If the Sprint customer community can
make Sprint Product Marketing think that [potential] customers will see
this as a benefit, then they could do the things which would make Ops folk
able to take more immediate actions than passing the buck upstairs.  

Some of Sprint's competitors have gone this path, which may make it easier
to get Sprint managament to see it as a good thing.  But it may take
sophisticated math to calculate the effort to get an organization with as
many lawyers as Sprint has to make legal changes.

> Sprint should not be allowed to operate on the internet, they're
> destroying it, they're completely irresponsible.

This seems a bit extreme, and probably does not help get your point across.

I've been involved in some spam issues, and life is often less clear than
one might like.  It's not like there is good legislative or case law on
this stuff, and companies large enough to have lawyers tend to worry about
such problems.  John Curran wrote a nice summary of this and the related
due process issues last month.

Until the provider community management perceives spam as needing to be
abolished, the legal and procedural framework will not be in place for us
lowly ops folk to nuke the <bleep>ers the minute they appear on the scope.

Provider community management perceptions are driven by customer demand.
So it would be very helpful for the user community to make clear to big
provider management that they don't want to receive spam.


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