I just got an email from someone who wanted information about one of the organizations in which I am involved. I started today with a mission to be efficient and catch up on stuff--including my bloated email inbox--so I efficiently typed out a reply to the emailer's questions and sent it off.
In seconds, I got back the following:
Click the link below to fill out the request:
In other words, the emailer was using Earthlink's "high" spam protection, which means that the only people who can reach her are people s/he has told Earthlink are okay. It's not really spam control--it's a whitelist.
Since it was for the organization, I gritted my teeth and filled it out. I might not have bothered otherwise, because I think it's surpassingly rude to contact someone, asking for help or information, and then make the person you're contacting go through unnecessary hoops to give you what you've asked for. Then again, I don't know how many Earthlink users realize what happens when they choose the high spam protection.
If I were an Earthlink user, I wouldn't use the high protection, because I want people to be able to contact me. As an author, and as a member of three or four organizations with a public presence, I need to be accessible to people who might want to email me. Including a lot of people I've never heard from before. Like, maybe, readers?So
So in the course of my interaction with my emailer--who is, I determined, a writer with a first book coming out--I wondered: should I broach the issue of this email thing?
I decided to say something. Tactfully. Bless her heart, the writer in question understood completely, and has already changed her email settings.
I like it when it works out that way.
I just wish more people would put some kind of presure on Earthlink to do genuine spam control, instead of this perishingly stupid whitelist!