|2004-02-23 11:06 (UTC)
They're misspelled deliberately in most cases, so as to get past spam filters. But some of the 'misspellings' are so atrocious now that I can't imagine them working at all.
The other thing to remember is that companies who pay others to spam people are probably hearing things like 'highly targeted, opt-in advertising - completely legal'. Only one of those three things is correct though - the "completely legal" part. :( Spam is often not "highly targeted" at all (you would know... how many spams do you get offering viagra or a larger bulge in your pants? ;)) and if it's opt-in at all, it's only by a very tenuous link (you subscribed to some list, they sell your details, you get spam from totally unrelated companies claiming that you originally "opted in" to the list - which is true, but irrelevant).
I almost (but not quite) find myself agreeing with Bill Gates about his proposed system of getting people to pay for sending email, but the fee could be waived by the person receiving the mail. It would certainly all but eradicate spam as it is today. However, there are lots (and I mean LOTS) of disadvantages to that method. The freedom to send mails to people you know would be lost. Let's say you send a mail to your ex, or something. Will he/she waive the fee?
Or let's take a legitimate mailing list such as the LangaList. Lists like that one have loads of members, yet Fred's running the whole thing out of his own pocket. If there was to be a boycott of the list and people avoided , it would cost Fred a heck of a lot of money. In fact, he probably wouldn't run the list any more (or at least restrict the list to the Plus! subscribers) because of that simple reason. Which would be a shame, because his list is really very, very good.
It's a problem that currently can't easily be solved, unfortunately. :(