Thursday, October 03, 2019

>Hi Me, good question, "How did i get it to do that?"

>And I can answer that with the same answer I give to the other question,
> "Why didn't I fill out the form..."

>One answer: PDQ.

>I am done with PDQ. Main Reasons: I have been getting Way too much spam
>(been with them too long), several people tell me they get unexplained

(I'll put a version of this on my blog.)

It may be PDQ's own email operation, and it's appropriate
to look for a better one, but I wouldn't blame PDQ.
It's one of very few consumer markets that's truly
competitive. Profit margins are razor thin, so you
have the strange situation where the prices actually
reflect the cost. (I'm not talking about the monopoly
"broadband" service from the cable TV or phone companies,
or intensively advertised brands like AOL and Earthlink.)
Internet America is trying to sell dial-up service with
an "accellerator" for $20/month. They're probably
paying a wholesaler $4-5/month for the phone line
and the "accellerator" facility costs another $7-8/mo.
At that price they can't afford to run adequate email
service. But tens of millions of consumers buy
exactly that package of services, from dozens of retailers.
It's good enough for certain consumer entertainment purposes.
It's just not good enough for real work. You've been
buying a low-ball consumer toy and trying to use
it as a serious tool.

I've been talking about this problem for years.
I've handed out flyers at Green meetings. I've done
workshops. Nobody wants to hear it. They think they've
found a "bargain" and it's a blow to the ego to find
out they're just buying junk and that's why it's cheaper.
Or something.

The email that comes with cable TV or telco DSL or Gmail
or Yahoo or Hotmail are just as bad. You may hear from
people who are happy with them, but a few dozen anecdotes
are not a statistical sample. Most of the telcos outsource
the operation to Yahoo. Cable TV companies are as bad
as cell phone or corporate software in terms of service
quality, and their Internet operations are *worse*
than their TV operations. Gmail has serious privacy

The ugly fact is email has gotten really expensive to
operate. The guy who runs one of the biggest and best
in my region told me that half the servers in his
data center are dedicated, they do nothing else, to
blocking and analyzing and sorting junk email.

It accounts for half the electricity consumed by the
installation, and two thirds of the staff time. It's the
same with corporate IT departments that still run their
own Internet email. Spam and malware is now 97-98%
of all email messages. There's an environmental issue
here. Suppose computers and networking equipment consume
something like 3% of the electric power in a large
office building. Remember you burn it three times: once
in the computer and twice in the air conditioner removing
the waste heat from the building. That means 1.5% of
electric power delivered to the densest areas of US
cities is being burned by spam.

Spamming is international
organized crime. It costs the global economy tens of
billions of dollars directly, hundreds if you count
lost staff time at the network edge. After embezzlement
and corrupt government procurement, I suspect it's the
biggest category of crime, in terms of dollar cost, that
doesn't provoke any serious law enforcement effort.
It's intentional. The biggest Internet carriers could
shut most of it down in a few months if they really
wanted to. They're letting the spammers do the dirty
work of destroying the public email system so they
can replace it with a centrally controlled proprietary

If you want a professional grade of email service you
are going to have to pay what it costs to operate.
You can't get it for free from any for-profit corporation.
The email account at is a bargain and
reliable, but you'll have to set up your own spam
filtering on it. might be a little better,
I don't know. Right now the best value might be
the "high performance email" service at might be almost as good. The "premium"
account at Outblaze ( might still be usable.
The aggressive blocking I do at might be adequate
for you, but we do get the occasional "false positive."

>and it was time for me to abandon dial-up anyway.

That's hard for most people because they are using email
addresses with their ISP's name in them. You don't
get this chance very often. Register your own personal
domain name and use it for your email address.
That way you can switch providers all you want without
telling anybody. You're crossing a threshhold where
you can't afford business grade Internet ACCESS, but
you need business grade EMAIL SERVICE. That means you
are going to have to buy the two services from two
different companies. You're halfway there when you start
thinking about moving to Gmail or Yahoo. But do it right
and move to a serious email company. Get the bargain
high-speed access from the cable TV or telco, but pretend
it didn't even come with email service.

>I have no
>idea how the double @ came about. Blame PDQ (Internet America).

>And about the dlist form? Honestly, I didn't know about it,

That's another wall I beat my head against with the Greens.
Type the phrase " email" into Google.
Try it with or without the quotes. Take a look at
the first two hits both ways. People don't even TRY to
figure out what's going on when their email is rejected.
They just GUESS.


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