Social Networks As A Route Around Spam?

from the a-shift-in-thinking dept

I've heard of a few people who say they use online social networking/social software systems to keep in touch with certain people. By using the messaging functionality in those systems - which requires you to know whoever your messaging - it lets them put less pressure on the email inbox. Now, someone over at CNN is noticing this and suggesting that we rethink the concept of email, based on social relationships, by using tools like FOAF, to route around the spam problem. Instead of using your email inbox as a general "catch-all", the idea is only allowing communication via people in your network. The article suggests that this also gets around the problem of a message from a friend "scrolling off the screen" - which happens to me way too often. You still have an email in-box, but you check it much less often. While it all sounds nice, I'm not really convinced such a plan will work for most people. Email makes intuitive sense to most users - even if it gets frustrating at times. Anything that requires a mental shift in how you think about communicating with people is difficult to convince people to shift to. For most people, email remains "good enough" for communications, and so they see little reason to shift to some other solution that raises its own problems.

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  • identicon
    Chris, 21 Oct 2003 @ 9:19am

    No Subject Given

    Isn't that just basically a white list / challenge-response system at that point?

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Mike (profile), 21 Oct 2003 @ 9:23am

      Re: No Subject Given

      I agree that it's similar, but not exactly - because the idea is no longer about completely blocking out emails from others, but about re-prioritizing your messaging, so that messages from friends end up in a different system - that isn't based on chronology, but on their relationship to you. At least, I think that's what they're getting at...

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    AMetamorphosis, 21 Oct 2003 @ 11:18am

    Problem solved ...

    I just do not see " SPAM " to be this BIG problem that everyone complains about.
    I use one email address for family & friends.
    I use one email address for work.
    And I use Spamhole for disposable email addresses when I need to sign up to gain access to something.
    If your careful about your email usage Spam really isn't that big a problem.
    You don't post your telephone # and address all over the world so why would you think that having your email address so readily available would not result in Spam ?
    Seems like a moot point if the user uses e mail intelligently.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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