3 September 2012
[spam] All the Spammers in the World May Only Make $200 Million a Year‘It is just so cheap to send spam and even if you only ensnare a tiny number of people, that’s enough to make it worthwhile. Rao and Reiley estimate that only 1 in 25,000 people need somehow buy something through spam advertising to make it worthwhile.’
6 December 2007
[spam] Inside the “Ron Paul” Spam Botnet — facinating behind-the-scenes look at the methods and tools spammers use … ‘Reactor Mailer operates with a software-as-a-service model. Spammers are given accounts on a Reactor server, and use a web-based interface to manage their spam tasks.’
9 August 2007
[spam] Damn Spam — The New Yorker on Internet Spam [via qwghlm]…

‘After selecting six hundred West Coast addresses, Thuerk realized that he would never have time to call each one of them, or even to send out hundreds of individual messages. Then another idea occurred to him: what if he simply used the network to dispatch a single e-mail to all of them? “We invite you to come see the 2020 and hear about the DECSystem-20 family,’’ the message read. As historic lines go, it didn’t have quite the ring of “One small step for a man,” yet Gary Thuerk’s impact cannot be disputed. When he pushed the send button, he became the father of spam. The reaction was immediate and almost completely hostile. “This was a flagrant violation of the Arpanet,’’ one recipient wrote. Another noted that “advertising of particular products” should be strongly discouraged on the network. The system administrator promised to respond at once, and Thuerk was harshly reprimanded. Nevertheless, his company sold more than twenty of the computer systems, for a million dollars apiece.’

9 June 2006
[tech] 18 Days of Reckless Computing — How to Kill a Dell Computer in under three weeks … ‘I ask friends and relatives to forward me their nastiest-looking spam. In response, I start getting emails from my mom with discomforting subject lines like “Dating for kinky people!”‘
12 March 2005
[spyware] Adware-infected PCs net slimeware firms $3 a pop‘Webroot’s spy audit suggests an average PC on the net (whatever that is) has at “least two pieces of adware on it”. ClickZ Stats indicate that there are 280m active PCs on the internet. Multiplying the number of PCs by the average number of adware items on each by the revenue per app figure allows Stiennon to guesstimate that the illicit advertising market is worth $1.6bn a year.’
1 February 2005
[spam] Interview with a link spammer — The Register meets a Blog Comments Spammer. ‘…he’s confident he’ll stay in what is primly called the “search engine optimisation” business for a while yet. Why? Because the demand exists. “The reality is that people purchase Viagra, they require porn, they gamble online. When people do that, there’s money being made.” And if this sounds suspiciously like an “ends justify means” argument to you – it does to us too.’
15 November 2004
[spam] Trial Shows How Spammers Operate‘As one of the world’s most prolific spammers, Jeremy Jaynes pumped out at least 10 million e-mails a day with the help of 16 high-speed lines, the kind of Internet capacity a 1,000-employee company would need. [..] In a typical month, prosecutors said during the trial, Jaynes might receive 10,000 to 17,000 credit card orders, thus making money on perhaps only one of every 30,000 e-mails he sent out. But he earned $40 a pop, and the undertaking was so vast that Jaynes could still pull in $400,000 to $750,000 a month, while spending perhaps $50,000 on bandwidth and other overhead, McGuire said. “When you’re marketing to the world, there are enough idiots out there” who will be suckered in, McGuire said in an interview.’
5 May 2004
[spam] Spam with quotes — not exactly surrealist spam but perfectly targeted …

From: Callie.Riggs
Sent: 29 April 2004 11:13
To: linkmachinego
Subject: release the man in you tannin neuropsychiatric hellbender

To sit alone with my conscience will be judgment enough for me. – Charles William Stubbs
Glory is fleeting; but obscurity is forever. – Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821)

29 October 2003
[spam] Spam Pitches Are Mutating Faster — Wired News on the Arms Race between Spammers and Anti-Spammers. ‘…no spammer has yet to fool every Bayesian filter, some tricks work better than others. One recent spam employed a trick that misspelled almost every word in the body, but was still coherent enough to get the gist through. The idea, supposedly uncovered by researchers at Cambridge University, holds that readers can still read long sentences of misspelled words as long as the first and last letters of words are in the correct place. Ironically, the junk e-mail, which included 21 misspellings, was selling diplomas, including master’s degrees and doctorates, both of which were misspelled.’
22 September 2003
[size] Some ‘Enlargement’ Pills Pack Impurities — Another link indicating my obsession with penis-enlargement … ‘Flora Research, San Juan Capistrano, Calif., conducted an independent laboratory analysis of a composite sample of 10 Performance Marketing pills and turned up significant levels of E. coli, yeast, mold, lead and pesticide residues. The amount of E. coli bacteria – 16,300 colony-forming units per gram – appears to be particularly high, experts say. “I think it’s safe to say it has heavy fecal contamination,” says Michael Donnenberg, head of the infectious-diseases department at the University of Maryland.’ [via Follow Me Here]
16 September 2003
[spam] So Far, So Good — article about the current state of Bayesian Spam Filtering‘If the only way to get past Bayesian filters is to write spams more cleverly, we’ve made spamming a lot harder, because we’ve shifted the burden of cleverness from the few comparatively smart people who write spamware to the large number of stupider people who write the spams.’ [Related: Mefi on Bayesian Filtering]
30 August 2003
[spam] Turn Back the Spam of Time — Wired meets the Time Travel Spammer‘Todino believes that if it hadn’t been for an intervention by “the conspiracy,” he might finally have laid his hands on a time-travel machine.’ [Related: Time Travel Spam Example]
11 August 2003
[size] Do Penis Enlargement Pills Work? — a brave blogger intends to find out and report back … ‘I took two pills yesterday (after lunch and after dinner). I noticed a “tingly” sensation in my penis when I got my first post-pill erection last night. It was quite strange, like I could feel the blood filling it up.’ [via Kottke’s Remaindered Links]
10 August 2003
[spam] Swollen Orders Show Spam’s Allure — spam for $50 penis-enlargement pills WORKS?! … ‘Among the people who responded in July to Amazing’s spam, which bore the subject line, “Make your penis HUGE,” was the manager of a $6 billion mutual fund, who ordered two bottles of Pinacle to be shipped to his Park Avenue office in New York City. A restaurateur in Boulder, Colorado, requested four bottles. The president of a California firm that sells airplane parts and is active in the local Rotary Club gave out his American Express card number to pay for six bottles, or $300 worth, of Pinacle. The coach of an elementary school lacrosse club in Pennsylvania ordered four bottles of the pills.Other customers included the head of a credit-repair firm, a chiropractor, a veterinarian, a landscaper and several people from the military. Numerous women also were evidently among Amazing Internet’s customers.’
14 June 2003
[spam] Open Relay Spam is ‘Dying Out’ — Where does the typical Spam come from then? … ‘Spammers traditionally used ‘open relays’ to distribute their spam. Open relays allowed spammers to off load the job of sending thousands of emails to a powerful server with high bandwidth. The practice slows down the processing of legitimate email and clogs up bandwidth, to say nothing of the potential damage to reputation that comes from even innocently sending out spam. Years ago spammers were spoilt for choice for open relays, but now the window for exploitation of corporate mail servers has reduced dramatically…’
7 June 2003
[spam] BT Blocked by Spam Blacklist‘BT has been rocked by allegations that its own servers are “dangerously misconfigured, insecure or abuseable” and are exposing email users to the threat of increased levels of unsolicited mail. A number of BT customers attempting to email friends and colleagues have been perplexed by their emails bouncing back with a delivery error message…’
26 May 2003
[paranoia] Spam Anxiety… what are the Spammers trying to tell me?! …

Effort and Expense of a Large Manly Penis

8 May 2003
[spam] Spam You Never See … [via Diamond Geezer]

yes I have a very juvenile sense of humour...

25 January 2003
9 August 2002
[] The Bot who Loved Me — just how low can internet marketing schemes go? … ‘Perhaps the most extreme is the Crush007 site. Based in Malaysia, it sends a fake crush e-mail to an unsuspecting stooge. The site then goads the sucker to reveal all kinds of personal facts, including “how many times does she/he masturbate a week?” and “names of his/her biggest crush.” The homepage makes no secret about its motives: “We have developed this website just to help you find out who your friend’s crushes are, and also not to mention, their biggest, most well kept secrets.” Fear for the dorkiest kid in the class, thrilled that someone actually has a crush on him, who is about to be the victim of an Internet humiliation machine.’
5 January 2002
[spam] SIMPLE PILL CAN INCREASE YOUR EJACULATION By 581%!!! … really silly spam. ‘Shoot up to 13 feet!’ [via Everlasting Blort]