SPAMfighter Tagline is Just Spam to Me

closeThis post was published 12 years 7 months 23 days ago. A number of changes have been made to the site since then, so please contact me if anything is broken or seems wrong.

This is what I was doing while I was supposed to be finishing my coursework for the year. Don’t worry, I’m working on homework now; this was supposed to publish four hours ago and didn’t, so I tried again. Manually, because scheduled posting is temporarily borked.

HackedImage by Josh Walker via FlickrSpam is something everyone’s heard of, and probably gotten at least a few times. Messages like the one on the right have been going around with different month names for a long time. These are the kinds of things most of us know to ignore (but somebody must be buying or else the spammers wouldn’t bother).

Email taglines have probably been around longer, but they’re not the work of spammers. Legitimate companies like Yahoo!, Microsoft (*cough*), and AOL (*cough cough*) have all used advertising taglines on their free email services, and only Yahoo! has so far gotten rid of them. I just wonder how effective they are. Personally, I ignore everything below the signature unless it says “PS”.

Tagline ads are, to me, a pretty stupid marketing ploy. When software you’ve installed on your computer to protect you from ads starts sending out advertising of its own, however, I get very, very annoyed.

Personal Experience

My mother forwarded to me a message from one of her friends. It was a joke about the “ID-Ten-T” error — I’m sure you’ve heard it (and if not, just click the link).

Granted, the ID-Ten-T error joke isn’t all that funny, but the tagline on the email was worse. See, this friend of my mother’s uses SPAMfighter to fight spam. (Yeah, yeah; what else would you use it for, etc. etc.) It has apparently caught 377 spam messages to date.

I’ll just paste the whole tagline here:

I am using the free version of SPAMfighter for private users.
It has removed 377 spam emails to date.
Paying users do not have this message in their emails.
Get the free SPAMfighter here: <link snipped>

That, frankly, makes me want to stay as far away from SPAMfighter as possible. I am told that paying users don’t have the message, and am then offered a download of the free version, which will cause me to spam everyone I email with that same message.

Do they honestly think I’ll download their program if I know for certain that it will do that? Seriously, I hate email taglines. Signatures are fine — in fact, I have one myself, all of two or three lines — but ads make me crazy. Especially if the product being advertised will cause me to send out those same taglines to other people.

So, you want me to use your anti-spam product? Limit features instead of tagging my email. Of course, I don’t need an anti-spam product anyway because I have Gmail’s spam filters. 😀 But not spamming your users’ innocent contacts with ads would be a nice touch.

As a side topic, while I was composing this post, Zemanta showed me a couple of my own screenshots from Wikipedia as image suggestions. Cool!

Zemanta Pixie


I am an avid technology and software user, in addition to being reasonably well-versed in CSS, JavaScript, HTML, PHP, Python, and (though it still scares me) Perl. Aside from my technological tendencies, I am also a theatre technician, sound designer, violinist, singer, and actor.

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