AOL, Yahoo To Charge Marketers Due To Own Spam Filter Failings

from the uh.--but-why? dept

There was some buzz about this last week, but some more details have now come out about Yahoo and AOL’s plans to charge marketers to email their users. Contrary to some blogs’ commentary on the situation, this does not mean that you will need to pay a fee to email your friends at either of these services. It’s simply directed at commercial emails. The thought process is a bit roundabout. Basically, a bunch of companies are complaining that the spam filters these services use are too aggressive, and often block out their emails. So, AOL and Yahoo are offering an alternative. Pay up, and the emails skip the spam filters. However, there’s also a catch. You have to show that the people on your mailing list really did ask to receive those emails. In other words, this is really a lot of talking about not very much at all. AOL and Yahoo are basically going to try to charge marketers for the fact that their own spam filters don’t work all that well and are blocking legitimate messages.

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Comments on “AOL, Yahoo To Charge Marketers Due To Own Spam Filter Failings”

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ted says:

Re: gmail rocks

i’ve never had a spam message in my gmail. oh perhaps its because i dont go around giving my e-mail out, to anyone. i dont post it on websites. i just dont make it pubicly available. and for the things on the net that need my e-mail for whatever reason, i use a yahoo address. ha ha. thanks yahoo!

Kate says:

Re: Re: gmail rocks

ted– It’s not just because you don’t give your email out. I’ve had brand-new accounts at Yahoo or Hotmail become deluged with spam email before I had even gotten around to telling my family the address. No amount of discretion is going to prevent a bot from randomly generating your email address, or, worse yet, having it made readily available by the email provider. A decent service, however, is key in keeping the spam away. And that’s why *I* like gmail. =P

A Person (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: No Subject Given

This is a paragraph from the New York Times article on it:
“Paying senders will be assured that their messages will be delivered to AOL users’ main in-boxes and marked as “AOL Certified E-Mai.” Unpaid messages will be subject to AOL’s spam-filtering process, which diverts suspicious messages to a special spam folder. Most unpaid messages will also not be displayed with their original images and links.”

So, if someone sends Grandma some pictures taken at the family reunion, AOL is going to take them out unless paid? Really does sound like blackmail. Hopefully this will crash and burn, it’s really preying on the internetally challenged.

I’ll be encouraging anyone I know who uses either service to switch to Gmail, eternal beta or not.

Joe says:

E-Mail for Dummys

AOL and to a lesser degree Yahoo design services for the “Lost in cyber Space” user that needs everything done for them. That should never be allowed to make decisions concerning anything related to computers or the internet, even on their own systems.

AOL, So Simple its… for you Stupid.

Slowly the mass moron is catching on and ALO subscriptions will continue to dwindle.

giafly says:

AOL Reverses Whitelist Decision

“AOL will not do away with its Enhanced Whitelist, a spokesman for the company told DM News today, only days after the company said the whitelist would be phased out as it added Goodmail CertifiedEmail …

AOL reversed its decision on the whitelist after numerous e-mail senders and providers lashed out against the company in blogs and public statements. One e-mail executive compared the AOL-Goodmail decision to a tax on e-mail..”

Tyshaun says:

so let me get this straight...

Someone out there is paying AOL to provide e-mail services for them. That someone goes out and subscribes to some companies mailing list, let’s say Home Depot. Now AOL says to Home Depot, you are in our spam filtering software, you need to pay me to get to the customer that requested e-mail from you, that’s paying us too?

That sounds vaguely like extortion to me and poor idiot AOL subscriber ends up getting scre*** both ways because he’s paying AOL and probably pays more to shop at Home Depot because they have to hike up the price a bit just to send the AOL subscriber e-mail.

JWB (profile) says:

No Subject Given

“So, AOL and Yahoo are offering an alternative. Pay up, and the emails skip the spam filters. However, there’s also a catch. You have to show that the people on your mailing list really did ask to receive those emails”

If you ask to recieve the email, it’s not spam. I can’t belive anyone would pay to send legit email to AOL customers -I can’t believe anyone would pay to be an AOL customer. I host over 400 email domains and since AOL’s “new and improved” spam filtering was added, we have valid email from our hosted domains reported as spam by AOL users on a daily basis. Maybe I should bill AOL for all the time I have to spend investigating and replying to falsely reported spam from their screwed up anti-spam system.

Stan says:


Basically, if you have money, then you can bypass. If you don’t, then you get filtered. The policy will benefit big companies who already dominate the market, and punish the smaller businesses that cannot afford their price.

Look at it this way. How do you feel about a new tarriff of $5 for every mile you drive in your car on any road, anywhere. Of course if you’re wealthy, you will hardly notice the $5 fee. If you’re not wealthy, then you’re stuck at home as you can’t afford to drive anywhere. So the wealthy person is allowed to conduct commerce while the others are locked out.

Seems anti-competitive to me. In this case, the end result will be the smaller players squeezed out of the online market, in the name of preventing Spam.

I wonder if this is legal or not. As Congress is looking into all manner of things online these days, maybe they need look into this new idea as well, to ensure it remains in line with U.S. competitive practices for businesses.

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