Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Spam United States Your Rights Online

Is the Dean Campaign Spamming? 432

Posted by michael
from the hmmmmmm dept.
bluelark writes "A few days ago, a friend of mine fowarded to me some spam apparently from the Howard Dean campaign. The sender's return address, however, was dean@america.propulsive.net. In addition, this is not the Texas email we've all heard about. Being bored, I did some research, and I found some intriguing results. If you are interested, I've posted the the technical details and the the spam. Even though the images in the email are being served from Venezuela, the links in the body of the spam are actually redirects from a marketing partner called eScriptions.net to a Dean for America registration page. It appears that the campaign is outsourcing their email with some dubious marketing partners who are then using notorious spamhauses to send out the actual email. Why does a supposedly "net savvy" campaign even think for one second that this approach is acceptable?"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Is the Dean Campaign Spamming?

Comments Filter:
  • Perhaps.... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by pjdepasq (214609) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @03:47PM (#6718151)
    Perhaps being net saavy means that you know enough to farm it out and not have to:
    1) worry about doing it yourself, and
    2) being able to blame it on someone else when it all goes badly (or is revealed as spam).
    • by Zeinfeld (263942) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:29PM (#6718369) Homepage
      If the person behind the story knew a bit more about the net he would know why every legitimate originator of a lot of emails is going to use an outsourcer and that without exception they are all listed as suspicious by anti-spam types.

      The fact is that blacklists are not organized half as well as they would have people believe. If you want to send bulk mail you use an outsourcer because unless you do most of your messages will get classified as junk. Getting round spam filters turns out to be the main technical skill the outsourcers provide.

      The problem with spam is that it has got to the point where everything becomes a he-said she-said argument. There is actually no way to know if either side is telling the truth. Try putting up a pro-israeli or pro-palestinian web site and you will find you are blacklisted for spamming before you send out a single email.

      All 'outsourced maillers' are listed on blacklists, most of them for good reason. There is absolutely no way that an outsourced email provider can know if an email list provided by a client is legit or spam.

      The problem here is that the protocols simply don't work as well as they should. We don't have a way to know who is behaving honestly and who is not. That is a protocol bug. It is fixable but only if we face up to the fact that we need to fix it and get the email providers to deploy whatever changes are necessary.

      That is not going to happen in time for the 2004 election. But think of this, until the Internet US politics has been game where you take as much money in bribes from corporate America and then you spend your whole time in office paying back favors. Bush and Cheney are paying back $2000 for every $1 they collected from the super-rich. Next election they plan to spend $200 million. That means another $400 billion to be spent on tax cuts for the super rich when the budget deficit is heading for $700 billion. Don't think you are getting any of that unless you are one of the insider investors. Otherwise you are more likely to find that your investment in Bush reaps the same results as your investment in 'Kenny Boy' Lay's Enron.

      • by notque (636838) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:32PM (#6718380) Homepage Journal
        Getting round spam filters turns out to be the main technical skill the outsourcers provide.

        I do not call this a skill. If I make a filter (not a spam filter, an EMAIL FILTER), then I do not want what I am filtering.

        That means that you should not attempt to get around my filter to send me what you beileve I would like to recieve.

        If I hang up on you, I do not want to buy your product, nor will I ever. Learn from this technique.
        • by jd142 (129673) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:54PM (#6718477) Homepage
          Getting around spam filters is not just trying to get your e-mail client in an inbox that really matches one of the filters you have personally made.

          Here's a real world example. I wrote an application so that staff in our college could go to a web page and send mail to the students of our college, either all students or by class year. Not wanting every person to see every other person's e-mail, I initially set this program up to bcc everyone and send a copy to the Deans as the to: recipients so they would know what the students got and I put a generic address as the from: so the students could hit reply and have it go to a central account but they could also see the deans' addresses to e-mail them.

          Unfortunately, this got flagged by places like Hotmail and Yahoo as spam because I had just bcc'ed a large number of people.

          So I had to send the messages out one at a time as individual messages, not as one message with a huge number of recipients.

          I believe it is this kind of spam filter, cases where there is a legitimate reason to send mail to thousands of recipients without letting the recipients see each other's addresses, that the original poster was referring to.

          • by notque (636838) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @05:02PM (#6718524) Homepage Journal
            Getting around spam filters is not just trying to get your e-mail client in an inbox that really matches one of the filters you have personally made.

            Here's a real world example. I wrote an application so that staff in our college could go to a web page and send mail to the students of our college, either all students or by class year. Not wanting every person to see every other person's e-mail, I initially set this program up to bcc everyone and send a copy to the Deans as the to: recipients so they would know what the students got and I put a generic address as the from: so the students could hit reply and have it go to a central account but they could also see the deans' addresses to e-mail them.

            Unfortunately, this got flagged by places like Hotmail and Yahoo as spam because I had just bcc'ed a large number of people.

            So I had to send the messages out one at a time as individual messages, not as one message with a huge number of recipients.

            I believe it is this kind of spam filter, cases where there is a legitimate reason to send mail to thousands of recipients without letting the recipients see each other's addresses, that the original poster was referring to.


            And that is a legitimate use. I can understand that, and I hadn't considered spam filters that people put in place without knowing what is filtered. I.E. Yahoo and Hotmail's spam filtering.

            But your point is also valid when considering what I would want or not. I would want something from a university that I was attending, and would not want anything from someone shilling their campaign through my email.

            If I want to take the measures to learn about your campaign, then I will do so. I do not want it force fed to me (aside from the media.)

            If it's okay for a campaign to mass email, then it is okay for a company trying to sell their products through mass email.

            Which means, I get a lot of mass email. I already get more junkmail through the normal postal system than I do actual email. I honestly just don't want it. Do I not have a choice in this matter?
            • And that is a legitimate use. I can understand that, and I hadn't considered spam filters that people put in place without knowing what is filtered. I.E. Yahoo and Hotmail's spam filtering.

              That's why I have test accounts on all of the major free e-mail providers, so I can see what the students will get when we send them messages. I'm noticing a fair chunk of our students using free providers instead of the university's mail servers because the accounts will be around after they graduate.

              I would want so
      • by Sleen (73855)
        The problem here is that the protocols simply don't work as well as they should. We don't have a way to know who is behaving honestly and who is not. That is a protocol bug. It is fixable but only if we face up to the fact that we need to fix it and get the email providers to deploy whatever changes are necessary.

        Well it might be a natural consequence and trade off for such a promiscuous system.

        In my free hotmail inbox, I routinely get salacious emails whose subjects are obviously random walks with space
      • by Trailer Trash (60756) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @05:35PM (#6718725) Homepage

        All 'outsourced maillers' are listed on blacklists, most of them for good reason. There is absolutely no way that an outsourced email provider can know if an email list provided by a client is legit or spam.

        Owning and running an ISP, I think I can respond rather well to this point.

        Bullshit

        My customers who send mass emails know that they are being watched. I have an idea of how many customers each has, and I correlate that to their list sizes. If one suddenly comes up with 1,000,000 names, guess what? I know it's not legit.

        I had a telemarketing computer call one day with a message trying to rent mailing lists to the business. Near the end, the guy mentioned that I could rent their "35,000,000 piece opt-in email list". Bullshit. Nobody has the names of 35M people who want to receive trash in their email simply because there aren't 35M people like that on the entire planet.

        My customers likewise know that I am prone to pick a random email address from their list and ask them for more information about that person. Real name, company name, and telephone number. And I occassionally call them to verify. I don't have to worry about spammers.

        A little common sense goes a long way. You're obviously a Howard Dean fan, but let's face it, he's spamming. The argument that "he doesn't know any better", which is apparently what you're trying to make here, worked the first time.

        This is no longer "the first time". Understand?

        Michael

    • by notque (636838) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:30PM (#6718371) Homepage Journal
      Perhaps being net saavy means that you know enough to farm it out and not have to:
      1) worry about doing it yourself, and
      2) being able to blame it on someone else when it all goes badly (or is revealed as spam).


      I thought being net saavy meant I had excellent karma on Slashdot, used pine to get my email, and lynx to view the web.

      Now I have to start over?... What if I mention linux a few times?
    • by ClarkEvans (102211) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @05:04PM (#6718532) Homepage
      There are many "well meaning" people who would like to see Dean elected, are not part of his official campaign group, but are really not net savvy enough to understand the issue of spamming. Some of them may even think that this helps Dean and are just ignorant of the issue. Don't think for a moment that Dean controlls the actions of all people who are "participating" in his campaign.
      • by S.Lemmon (147743) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @05:18PM (#6718609) Homepage
        Heh heh, it's also possible his opponents are even *more* net savvy, and are sending spam in his name to make him look bad. If you think about it, it's an easy way to attack someone - if the spam is "promoting" you, it's almost impossible to prove you had nothing to do with it. With most spam the mailers used are unconnected to what's being "spamvertized", so anyone can send spam claiming to promote you.

        • by Malcontent (40834) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @09:09PM (#6719684)
          This happens more often then you think. In my home town during a recent election the republicans sent out mailings pretending to be from the communist party endorsing the democratic candidate. Too bad the democrats did not retaliate by sending out mailing from the white supremacists endorsing the republican candidate. Although that would not have the same impact since the local white supremacists were endorsing the republican candidate.
    • Re:Perhaps.... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Wellspring (111524) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @05:44PM (#6718793)
      This is one of Niven's Laws: There is not cause so just and noble that you can't find total idiots following it.

      OK, so let's get this out of the way. Political people have to eat crow on a regular basis when campaign tactics appear to be silly or stupid or craven or whatnot. This is just such a case.

      Instead of coming up with innovative reasons why Dean is right or shouldn't be blamed, they should be contacting their man via his volunteer network and getting him to shape up. Every presidential candidate has had to apologize or reform when his campaign does something embarrassing. This is just such a case.
  • Oh no! (Score:2, Funny)

    by bersl2 (689221)
    A politician lying! Oh dear!

    </sarcasm>
    • Re:Oh no! (Score:2, Informative)

      by bersl2 (689221)
      Err... make that "being hypocritical"---it's almost the same thing.

      Still, it's one more example of how technocracy will never come to be.
      • Re:Oh no! (Score:5, Interesting)

        by numark (577503) <[jcolson] [at] [ndgonline.com]> on Sunday August 17, 2003 @05:40PM (#6718760) Homepage Journal
        Reading further into the story, however, it becomes apparent that Dean's campaign was unaware of the tactics of their outsourced marketing company. As soon as they were alerted to the fact that spam was being sent out in their name, they immediately terminated their contract with the outsourcer.

        The Dean campaign has been against spam heavily in the past. They do not support anyone who sends spam in their name. In this case, it was simply that the company that did their marketing misrepresented themselves as being an opt-in email list, but instead sent mass mailings to large numbers of people without Dean's consent. I can't really see how Dean can be blamed for something that was done without his knowledge or approval.
  • Net Savvy. Not (Score:4, Interesting)

    by rf0 (159958) <rghf@fsck.me.uk> on Sunday August 17, 2003 @03:49PM (#6718159) Homepage
    If you want to market this way then at least use a list of people you know who will vote for you, or have requested it. There is no reasons to spam people about this and I wouldn't be surprised that a large number of people who are outside the state or even in another country got it.

    Now how can they defend that? Spamming is worse than junkmail as the recipient has to pay rather than the sender. And before anyone say just press the delete key how do you do that on that average 3000 spams I get a month?

    Rus
    • by c4Ff3In3 4ddiC+ (661808) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:12PM (#6718295)
      And before anyone say just press the delete key how do you do that on that average 3000 spams I get a month?
      Get one of them birdies like Homer Simpson.
    • Re:Net Savvy. Not (Score:3, Interesting)

      by notque (636838)
      If you want to market this way then at least use a list of people you know who will vote for you, or have requested it. There is no reasons to spam people about this and I wouldn't be surprised that a large number of people who are outside the state or even in another country got it.

      So unless there is a resonable chance you could want the email, don't send it.

      Who decides what resonable chance is?

      Get a spam filter.
    • Re:Net Savvy. Not (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Politburo (640618)
      And before anyone say just press the delete key how do you do that on that average 3000 spams I get a month?

      By that number we're talking ~100 spams a day. You either need a new email address, or some better filtering. If you're hitting delete on 100 mails a day, you're wasting your own time.
  • by sphealey (2855) * on Sunday August 17, 2003 @03:51PM (#6718169)
    It does occur to you that the Dean campaign might not be the ultimate source of that spam? That someone with a few thousand to burn and knowledge of the direct mail industry fired up a dirty tricks campaign to make it look as if the Deaners were responsible? Reference John McCain and the South Carolina "push polls".

    Just a thought.

    sPh

    • by jetlag11235 (605532) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @03:58PM (#6718223) Homepage
      A link [spamvertized.org] near the bottom of the "technical details" page indicates that Dean was responsible. The page goes on to imply that it was foolish/irresponsible but unintentional.

      After the Dean campaign was presented with clear cut evidence as to the nature of emailresponse.net, they investigated promptly and terminated their relationship with the company that same day.

      -- jetlag --
    • I got this spam too, and my strong suspicion was it was indeed a joe job. I sent a uce complaint to the sending ISP with copies to <uce@ftc.gov> (like that'll help) and <abuse@deanforamerica.com> (also looked to see if there was an easy way to complain via the Web or e-mail to the FEC; there isn't). Unfortunately deanforamerica.com doesn't maintain an Abuse address, so that bounced, and I didn't get around to trying to send it to their Postmaster account. Whether or not it's them sending the e-m
    • by sparrow_hawk (552508) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:15PM (#6718312)
      I wondered about this as well, but sadly it appears that Dean did at least pay for the marketing campaign. *However*, it also appears that the campaign was duped into thinking that company they contracted with would only send mails to people who opted-in, so they were actually showing a reasonable amount of acumen, and just neglected to run a Google search on the company in question. Oops.

      I'm a little unsure of the submitter's motives in posting a two-week old story to Slashdot, because if anyone bothers to read the rest of the blog, they'll note that the Dean campaign severed its ties to the Spamhaus when it was informed about the actions being taken in its name.

      More balanced coverage from Spamvertized.org [spamvertized.org]

      It looks like an honest mistake, and its a shame that some people will fixate on this misstep.
      • I was about to say the same thing as the parent. Glad you got on and brought more light to the situation too.

        Definately not a Dean supporter here, but things like this can happen to any organization.

        Sometimes overzealous supporters can be your greatest enemies.
      • by donutello (88309) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:38PM (#6718403) Homepage
        Funny how when Orrin Hatch hires another company to run his website and that company violates copyright laws, it's Orrin Hatch's fault and he should be responsible.

        But when the allegedly net-savvy Dean does the same, it's an honest mistake.
      • "the campaign was duped into thinking that company they contracted with would only send mails to people who opted-in"

        And how large did they think this list of "please send me emails asking for my support on a presidential campaign" would be?

        Honest, and "opt-in" email techniques are hardly words that you'd associate with each other.
  • by Spoticus (610022) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @03:53PM (#6718185)
    ...even think for one second that this approach is acceptable?"

    Probably for the same reasons spammers everywhere continue to do it: some people will click on the pretty colors - they get results.
  • by Neologic (48268) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @03:53PM (#6718187)
    Look at who is calling the Dean campaign savvy- its mostly political journalists. Do we really think they are qualified to label someone net savvy? Just because Dean supports use Meetup.com does not mean the campaign is net savvy. Heck, most politicians aren't even politically savvy...
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Think about it harder, please.

      They refer to him as Net savvy not because of his technological prowess (please, he's a 50-something year old man -- he's a doctor, not a computer scientist, OK?). They do it because the Net freaks like him. Face it, a bunch of us Net freaks are liberals and gays and he's the candidate who supports gay rights.

      Spamming would shatter that support.
    • by commodoresloat (172735) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:14PM (#6718307)
      I want to know his slashdot user ID.
    • The dean campaign has been doing a very good job of using the net to build their grass roots, not that Howard Dean knows how to configure a Cisco router, or whatever.
      • A very good point. Just because a candidate is considered tech-savvy does not mean that he or she can make a living as a full time sys admin.

        Definitely cheers to the Dean campaign for using the Net to boost support, it's certainly a good idea. If only the Bush campaign would do the same, although I do give them credit for making a public database of all their campaign contributions.
      • by notque (636838) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @05:06PM (#6718544) Homepage Journal
        The dean campaign has been doing a very good job of using the net to build their grass roots, not that Howard Dean knows how to configure a Cisco router, or whatever.

        Oh, Then I don't want Howard Dean to be my canidate. I was misinformed.

        I will only vote for people who can configure a Cisco router. That way, I am assurded that their political stances, and agendas coincide with mine.
    • Look at who is calling the Dean campaign savvy- its mostly political journalists
      Well, the story refers to a bit [siliconvalley.com] by Dan Gillmor [siliconvalley.com], who is a technology columnist, not a political journalist.
    • by Phoenix666 (184391) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:28PM (#6718367)
      I am part of the Dean campaign here in Brooklyn, and I am qualified to label the campaign net savvy. Over the past 6 years I've built massive e-commerce sites, B2B, non-profit, and many other sorts of web-projects. I used to work with asp/sql server, now mostly in L.A.M.P. And I'm not the only one. Three-quarters of the people in the campaign work in tech or internet-related professions, from coders to DBAs to sysadmins to designers to information architects. Furthermore, almost without exception all of those people use OSS. Yes, OSS, the same constituency as those who read /. In fact, through /. I have accidentally stumbled upon other Dean campaigners, and through the Dean campaign I have accidentally stumbled upon other /.-ers. If that doesn't define a net-savvy campaign, then I defy you to come up with a better definition.

      But even without that, using Meetup and MoveOn, blogs and online contributions does make you net-savvy, because it is ground-breaking and it is working. They have used the internet as a tool to organize, raise money, and turn Dean from a little-known name into the front runner in the democratic field. That, my friend, makes you net savvy. Measure that against Bush, who won't even let you email him anymore.

      • This just completely ignores the whole point of the original posting:

        If everyone's so net savvy, why are they spamming people?

        This may be the very first candidate to be taken down via an anti-spam backlash.
    • by sparrow_hawk (552508) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:36PM (#6718395)
      Ehrm... (not connected w/ the Dean campaign or any other in any way, shape, or form -- I'm just an interested observer :)...

      Have you looked at deanforamerica.com [deanforamerica.com]? I'd say that site is a good indicator of Internet-awareness. The man has a *blog* [blogforamerica.com], for crying out loud! Actually, all the Democratic candidates are trying to capitalize on the Internet, which is IMHO a Good Thing, though it's taking some of them longer than others.

      Contrast Dean's site with Bush's [georgewbush.com] (ooh, shiney) for a good illustration of why the former is considered "net-savvy." (yes i know incumbents don't need to mobilize as early as challengers, yes i know Bush's site is a "temporary site," but Dean's campaign is still a masterful example of how to mobilize the internet community. i long for the day when the *president* writes a daily weblog.)

      Oh, and if you think Dean is another Democrat who is against everything Slashdotters hold dear, check out some of his posts [lessig.org] on Lawrence Lessig's blog [lessig.org]. (Kucinich has some interesting things to say here [lessig.org] as well. He's even pro-GPL!)
  • Well.... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Judg3 (88435) <jeremy@NOsPam.pavleck.com> on Sunday August 17, 2003 @03:53PM (#6718189) Homepage Journal
    "Why does a supposedly "net savvy" campaign even think for one second that this approach is acceptable?"

    Well, here it is on slashdot - and probably will end up being posted on numerous other sites, blogs, etc.

    And as the old saying goes "Any publicity, is good publicity"
    • Re:Well.... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      No.

      This kind of publicity is not good. The Dean campaign has been severely aided by its Net characteristics and advantage, or so they say. By alienating the Internet audience, this is not good publicity. Which is, frankly, why I don't think they've been spamming.

      Too dumb.
  • by rzbx (236929) <slashdot&rzbx,org> on Sunday August 17, 2003 @03:57PM (#6718212) Homepage
    Why hasn't he emailed those running the campaign and ask them if they are working with eScriptions.net and if they are, if they know about the spam?

    First things first, ask the accused. If they admit to it, then you don't have to waste all the time on researching it. If any other answer, then the research could be done to verify the answer.
  • while i do not condone the using of spam relays to further political goals, I think it would be quite a dangerous thing to try to regulate such speech on the internet. the truth is that few candidates can afford airtime to campaign, while the internet and email can provide a low barrier of entry to the political process. this is a way to level the playing field and get out additional voices on issues and policies.
    • Using an open relay, or even worse an open proxy to send spam is not "speech" it's destructive hacking. If they want to send email, they should send it from their own machines. And, they should live with being black-listed or whatever.
      • Using an open relay, or even worse an open proxy to send spam is not "speech" it's destructive hacking. If they want to send email, they should send it from their own machines. And, they should live with being black-listed or whatever.

        Microsoft has taught me that using an open relay is actually a function!

        It's a service that the outgoing mail server and the host provide me. Not destructive hacking.
    • Bullshit. Seems you have drunk the kool-aid the politicians want you to drink.

      Stick your political speech on a website and the people who are interested will see it. Keep your political opinions out of my inbox, however.
    • If I didn't ask to hear it, you have no constitutional right to tell it to me. You are more than free to go stand in a public forum (e.g. a city park) or BUY advertising time on TV (also a public forum) to get your message out. You have no right, whether the message concerns politics, porn, penis enlargement pills, charity, the cure for cancer, or saving the universe, to have me hear your message.

      Regulating unsolicited email is not regulating speech. That's the fallacy people tend to get caught up in
    • If it is bulk email from a stranger, then it is spam. You want a definition that relies entirely on method, not content, because content based rules will push you into 'regulation of speech' issues, and you don't want to go there.

      (As to the "Consent, not method" definition: I think this definition is less useful than "bulk email from a stranger" because currently you do have a right to other forms of non-consent based communications, so courts might not look kindly on laws that take that right away. Especi

  • Spam to me is all those emails about porn sites, viagra, college degrees, and all the other unwanted crap that ends up in my inbox.

    If we did not have any spam, the kinds listed above, would anyone complain about emails from persons running for public office?

    I think one of the most important jobs a citizen has is to review the candidates running for office and pick the best one. To that end, I do not think an email here or there about something important is a bad thing.

    Then again, I guess those of us who
    • If we did not have any spam, the kinds listed above, would anyone complain about emails from persons running for public office?

      Yes. I don't want to pay, through my ISP bill, for some politician to spew forth his propaganda. When he puts up posters, he pays; when he takes out newspaper advertisements, he pays; when he spams, I pay, and that's the chief problem.

    • Feel free to sign up for as many mailing lists as you want but leave my mailbox alone. I get pissed off enough by television commercials mudslinging. I don't need a virtual war being waged in my inbox.

      You strive to set a dangerous precedent.
    • "I think one of the most important jobs a citizen has is to review the candidates running for office and pick the best one. To that end, I do not think an email here or there about something important is a bad thing."

      How about campaign emails from a city council election sent to non-residents of the city ... I've recieved many campaign emails from cities I have never heard of in states I have never visited. I get political spam for congressional races in states I can't vote in. It's spam.

      How about pol

    • YES (Score:5, Insightful)

      by donutello (88309) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:43PM (#6718427) Homepage
      I think one of the most important jobs a citizen has is to review the candidates running for office and pick the best one. To that end, I do not think an email here or there about something important is a bad thing.

      How does this crap get modded up? Any unsolicited, mass, annoying contact is spam. Why would you even think that it is ok to send someone email that they may or may not care about?

      Then again, I guess those of us who are interested in politics could sign up with the individual campaigns to recieve emails.
      Duh.

      I don't want some politician to decide what is important for me to know. I know how to seek out information I am interested in, thank you.
      • Can I presume that you're also working hard to get direct mail to your snail mail box banned as well? :-)

        Political speech is legally treated differently than commercial speech simply because of the fear that too many restrictions can stop political messages from getting to citizens, particularly when those messages are coming from people outside the political mainstream. Hitting the delete button a few times for political spam is much easier than throwing away physical junk mail delivering a political mess

    • If we did not have any spam, the kinds listed above, would anyone complain about emails from persons running for public office?

      I think one of the most important jobs a citizen has is to review the candidates running for office and pick the best one. To that end, I do not think an email here or there about something important is a bad thing.

      A hundred unwanted messages littered throughout my inbox impacts me the same no matter if the "important" message involves a product, candidate, or issue.

      If I wa

    • and I still got spammed with the Dean for America crap (issued by some third party).

      The worst part is that my e-mail address ends in a .ca - you'd think they would remove any country-specific addresses.

      Or maybe the spammers are inflating their mailing lists with Canadians.

    • Spam to me is all those emails about porn sites, viagra, college degrees, and all the other unwanted crap that ends up in my inbox. If we did not have any spam, the kinds listed above, would anyone complain about emails from persons running for public office?

      Spam isn't about content, it's about behavior. Whether it's porn, politics, or poetry, if it's sent in bulk to people who didn't ask for it, it's spam.

      The same principle applies in the real world. If I come to your house with a bullhorn at 4 am and
  • You sure can call this spam if foreigners (non american residing outside the US) get the email. Anybody outside the US got this email? Or did they get hold of list of americain only emails?
  • Why does Dean use spammers to get elected? Why did Karl Marx work from London, the heart of the capitalism he despised? Why does Noam Chomsky work out of MIT, the bastion of the establishment mentality he is trying to dismebowel? You must sibvert the system from the inside, that is why.
    • by bj8rn (583532)
      I make the wild guess that you were joking, as I don't understand what system would someone try to subvert by spamming. The only answer I can come up with is that someone might try and ridicule the current democratic system this way - by showing how easy it is to brainwash people (the European equivalent of this may be the pro-EU campaign the Lithuanian government did...). But I don't see why should he do that...
  • It Works (Score:2, Interesting)

    by MrBiiggy (458829) *
    Why does a supposedly "net savvy" campaign even think for one second that this approach is acceptable?
    Because it works, no matter how trivial it might be.
  • This is probably just the opposition doing general ratfucking in the spirit of Donald Segretti and all the other Nixon Dirty Tricksters. I doubt they'd go about spamming people directly after the problems with the Texas email. Yes, the Dean Campaign is net-savvy - they have to be. That's the core of their support, that's the source of their fundraising, that's the general nature of the beast. Like it or not, Dean's core consituancy are those that care about YRO. -- Funksaw
  • Come on, if you really have to ask these questions, then you dont understand politics.

    Its all about telling people what they want to hear, so you get elected. Then start work on YOUR agenda, not your voters.. Which normally involves sucking more money out of them while reducing their rights.
  • Kinda funny to load slashdot and see this article, as not even five minutes ago I checked my email and found some spam with an e-mail tracking redirect to http://www.arnold-2003.com/ trying to get me to buy a t-shirt...
    • You're not the only one: Return-Path: <bounce-3EF31AF313@mapsyknits.com>
      Received: from mapsyknits.com (adsl-199-245-138-8-cust-271-dsl.bac2.com [199.245.138.8])
      by mail.hiwaay.net (8.12.9/8.12.9) with SMTP id h7HArlAt981759
      for ; Sun, 17 Aug 2003 05:53:47 -0500 (CDT)
      Date: Sun, 17 Aug 2003 05:53:47 -0500 (CDT)
      Message-Id: <200308171053.h7HArlAt981759@mail.hiwaay.net>
      Received: (qmail 1369 invoked by uid 0); 16 Aug 2003 22:40:42 -0000
      From: Recall Team <noreply@mapsyknits.com>
      Subject:
  • Maybe, or (Score:3, Interesting)

    by autopr0n (534291) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:14PM (#6718306) Homepage Journal
    Maybe anti-dean people are simply sending 'fake' Spam in order to discredit his campaign. Hopefully someone from the dean campaign can clear this up.

    The other possibility is that this might actually work. They are probably sending messages to 'known democrats' who signed their emails when they registered for the party or whatever (I live in IA and I've been getting a lot of calls from democrats and pollsters on my Cell, which they must have gotten from my registration).

    Btw, just to defend the fact that I'm actually 'registered' to a political party. I liked both McCain and Bill Bradley (who ran against Gore in '2000), but the democratic primary was closer to my dorm room (the republican one was all the way across campus) and I figured there was a better chance of meeting a hot chick at the dem. Primary. Also, a friend of mine knew a guy working on the Bradley campaign so we were invited to the campaign HQ in Des Moines after the vote, which was kind of cool.

    In fact, I did meet a really hot chick and she decided to come up to Des Moines with us, which was pretty cool.

    It also worked out well, as I fucking hate bush.
    • Or, maybe...just maybe, Dean's spamming people. That's the most likely explanation.

      Screw him. We have more spam now than we know what to do with. We don't need him adding to it.
  • Basically (Score:3, Insightful)

    by notque (636838) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:17PM (#6718323) Homepage Journal
    His intentions are well founded, but he has a large staff of people who make decisions for him. One of them probably thought it was indicitive of his "net savy" reputation to use online mail as a form of campaigning.

    Sounds resonable.

    I don't think he's net savy, as much as he is resonable to needs to the internet generation, or more than likely using this as the thing to set him a part, and make him a great canidate for president if the stock in people caring about the internet grows.

    Yee Haw.
  • campaign spamming (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Gryftir (161058) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:31PM (#6718377) Homepage
    Suprise, the Bush II relection machine also spammed. You can see it here on Cryptome. [cryptome.org]

    The difference? Dean for America stopped working with the spamming company the same day. Did Bush-Cheney '04 Inc. ? No, However, after cryptome posted the e-mail, the email used in the spam was unsubscribed from the list, and an automatic confirmatory e-mail sent. This despite the fact that John, who runs Cryptome, never subscribed, and never sent in an e-mail requesting to be unsubscribed. There is no evidence that the unsolicited e-mailing has been stopped.

    It's easy to say Dean for America isn't net-savvy. I mean they sent out some unsolicted e-mail right? But how many companies stop using spam once they realize what their marketing department was doing?

    How many do it the same day? Bush, despite a record breaking campaign warchest still is soliciting by spam. Dean isn't. That tells me who is savvy.

    Gryftir
  • by pcaylor (648195)
    It was necessary to destroy your privacy in order to save it?

    I can't help but imagine what the reaction among the YRO crowd would be if this had been the Bush campaign.
    • by whatch durrin (563265) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @07:06PM (#6719200)
      Mod parent up, you hypocritical slashdot sheep!

      But Dean uses a blog!

      Dean takes contributions online!

      Dean's an opportunist like the rest. He was a nobody, then realized he had some support with the "net-savvy" crowd, and embraced it. Big frickin' deal.

      Does he run the damn blog? Does he code his own site? It's like saying John Kerry is "print-savvy" because his campaign makes yard signs.

      If you like Dean because you like his ideas, great. But let's not get carried away with labelling him "net-savvy" because his campaign saw an opportunity to capitalize.

  • by fvdl (263763) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:36PM (#6718396)
    If you had bothered to check the page that you actually link to yourself here [spamvertized.org], you had seen that this already was resolved (5 days ago by the looks of it). To quote: "After the Dean campaign was presented with clear cut evidence as to the nature of emailresponse.net, they investigated promptly and terminated their relationship with the company that same day."
    • by Anonymous Coward
      yes, and like most political machina they ONLY stopped once they were exposed. They would have kept on doing it if they had not be embarrassed into changing. Seen it thousands of times from both parties.

      Do not belive for a SECOND that they didnt know what they were doing. Get a grip dude. They are ALL like that.
  • you know... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by HBI (604924) <(moc.liamg) (ta) (enidarapk)> on Sunday August 17, 2003 @04:54PM (#6718478) Homepage Journal
    I'm a republican. I'm certainly not going to vote for Dean. Let's make that clear at the outset.

    That being said, who cares about this in the long run? He apologized, I doubt they'll do it again, so I would hardly hold it against him long term. With all the spammers out there who will send out junk email - it's kind of hard to find someone reputable to do this for you. A campaign worker fucked up. Big deal.

    That being said, isn't anyone on that side of the aisle worried about Dean? I find him to be the easiest Democrat to beat in the fall of 2004. This guy can be turned directly into the scion of leftist antiwar evil with a few carefully placed TV ads. The reason why he has survived till now is that he is running in a Democrat primary audience - a very leftist group to start with. His credentials and arguments play well there. Put him in a general electoral audience and watch how fast he gets bashed.

    I'm going to risk a preliminary estimate of 500 electorals for Bush if Dean is the Democrat candidate. If you think i'm wrong, I recommend a drive to Middle America and a discussion with some of the people there.

    At least Graham or Kerry or Lieberman would have a better chance with the general public. And for my sake, make this an actual campaign rather than a romp, willya? I haven't been overly happy with this administration.

    • Re:you know... (Score:5, Informative)

      by Daetrin (576516) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @05:56PM (#6718859)
      I congratulate you on your reasonable view on the spamming issue :) Not good that he fucked up, good that he fixed it.

      That being said, isn't anyone on that side of the aisle worried about Dean? I find him to be the easiest Democrat to beat in the fall of 2004. This guy can be turned directly into the scion of leftist antiwar evil with a few carefully placed TV ads.

      I have a few worries about his general electability, not because i think he would do a bad job of course, but just because of the smear campaign Bush is likely to run.

      However it has been pointed out that Dean's views on gun-control, that it should be left up to the states without any more federal involvement, is likely to pick him up a lot of "single-issue" NRA types. The fact that he's a fiscal conservative who balanced the budget in Vermont, making it one of the very few states with a budget surplus in this time of recession, is likely to pick up some of the Republicans who are more concerned that Bush has turned at 10 year $6 trillion surpluss in a $4 trillion deficit.

      The "civil unions" issue will probably hurt him, but he apparently did a very good job of turning a lot people's views around in Vermont, who were initially very against the idea, as long as he stuck with "civil union" rather than "gay marriage." Conservatives get upset about the sanctity of marriage, and homosexuals get upset about the lack of social benefits inherit in marriage, civil unions are a good compromise that doesn't torque off either side off too badly.

    • I'm gonna put on my psychic cap on right now and make two predictions:

      Dean will win the Democratic primary. Dean will lose the general election.

      But then, the democratic race has always been a race to find out who is going to lose to Bush. The country has moved frightenly to the right in the past few years, and despite how many fucked up things Bush does, he's still popular. IMO, Dean has the best chance to win, but it's still not enough.

      First and foremost, the democratic base likes to see someone with a
    • Re:you know... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Malcontent (40834) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @09:18PM (#6719706)
      It does not matter who the democrat run. As soon as Bush falls below 50% he'll start bombing sryia, iran or north korea and get re-elected by a landslide.

      The democrats know this and so does the rest of the country. I say if you know you are going to lose anyway run somebody who is not afraid the tell the truth and who is not afraid to call republicans names. The republicans get to call all democrats traitors and traitors so the democrats need someone to call them facists and racists.
  • by jonkl (81383) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @05:02PM (#6718525) Homepage
    The Dean campaign is decentralized, and one aspect of decentralization is that you'll have a lot of activity that's inherently outside the campaign's control. The fact that it's supportive of Dean doesn't mean that the Dean campaign sent it. For that matter, Dean's opponents might've funded it to make him seem less clueful about the 'net.
  • Not Spam (Score:3, Insightful)

    by KingTank (631646) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @05:05PM (#6718541)
    It's not spam. He's not trying to sell you anything. He's running for office. This is a great inexpensive way to compete against politicians who have more advertising funds. Far less annoying than TV ads, too.
  • by Nicco, Dean for Amer (699026) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @05:08PM (#6718555) Homepage
    Dean for America strongly opposes spam and has in place a "no spam" policy. We recently contracted with two vendors who made assurances that their lists were opt-in only. On Tuesday, August 12th, Dean for America received notification from a supporter that spam was being sent. We terminated our relationship with both vendors immediately.

    There are currently no third party vendors authorized to send email on behalf of Dean for America and none planned in the future.

    Please send any additional complaints to abuse@deanforamerica.com [mailto].
    • Just to let you know, the dates on the two spams I've seen are August 14th and August 15th respectively. I've posted the headers for the August 14th spam on my site [cleverhack.com], which I'm sure you've seen by now.

      Also, are you guys going to put a press release out on the site noting that the campaign has terminated the relationship with emailresults.net and eScriptions.com? Those are the two vendors you are referring to, correct?

    • by buddha42 (539539) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @06:27PM (#6719009)
      jeez didn't anyone ever teach you, never post your email on a web page... you'll get spammed!

      now what were we talking about?

    • Is there any way for us to know that you really work for the Dean campaign? Joe Trippi [slashdot.org] posted a couple comments in the last Dean story, and hasn't shown himself since.

      A simple link to your slashdot profiles from a page on deanforamerica.com that isn't linked to from anything but your reply to me or anyone else who asks this question would serve as proof.

      I'm a Dean supporter, but I'm also a cynic.
  • by fleener (140714) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @05:24PM (#6718650)
    Did anyone ask Dean's campaign for comment before publicizing this information? It would be rather simple for opponents to send fake spam and have a few geeks spread the lie as gospel.

    This is why I continue to trust our crappy corporate media more than independent media.
  • by whorfin (686885) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @08:50PM (#6719623)
    If the National Do Not Call List rules are any indication, Mr. Dean may believe that he is exempt from being labelled a spammer.

    From the FTC donotcall site [ftc.gov]:

    Will the National Do Not Call Registry cover all telemarketing calls?
    Placing your number on the National Do Not Call Registry will stop most telemarketing calls, but not all. Some types of calls are exempt. Political organizations, charities, telephone surveyors, and the business of insurance, to the extent that it is regulated by state law, are permitted to call you.


    So if this is specifically exempted from the telephone spam rules, presumably it will also be exempted from any future email spam rules, and thus has already been declared perfectly acceptable behavior.
  • by pherris (314792) on Sunday August 17, 2003 @09:23PM (#6719725) Homepage Journal
    Dean is a hard core politico. He supports the current "war on drugs", the death penalty and NAFTA. He has consistently and prolifically spoken out against medical marijuana laws (this includes the de facto support for imprisoning of the sick and dying for it's use and not allowing individual states to regulate medical marijuana). Vermont newspapers had to sue him when he was Governor for his 2002 schedule, which he refused to release. It seems he spend most of the year out of state. Not to mention that prison sentences more than doubled under his tenure yet crime still increased. I should mention that his has given us very little information on his stance on many issues unlike someone like Kucinich [kucinich.us].

    Sorry guys, if you were expecting him to be different from the majority of other politicians then you will be truly disappointed. He might be better than Bush or Lieberman, but not much. If UCE will get him into the Oval Office then UCE it is.

    From the Portsmouth [New Hampshire] Herald, August 10, 2003:

    "A medical marijuana campaign report card"
    Howard Dean - Rating: F+
    In short: Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean, who is a physician, is the only candidate who has actually killed a medical marijuana bill. Because of Dean's actions, Vermonters with AIDS, cancer and other terrible illnesses still face arrest and jail under state law for using medical marijuana. Dean recently retreated from his earlier pledge to direct the FDA to study medical marijuana. His reversal and his actions have shown that medical marijuana patients can never trust him. The only reason we give Dean an F+ and not a straight F is because the latter grade should be reserved for Bush, who is as cruel and heartless as anyone could possibly be on the medical marijuana issue.

    Rutland Herald - Newspapers sue Dean for access to schedule [rutlandherald.com]
    Portsmouth Herald - A medical marijuana campaig report card [seacoastonline.com]

    My advice: pick another horse.

If you think the system is working, ask someone who's waiting for a prompt.

Working...