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kmolloy

A question about reports and ESPs

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Hi, everyone.

I was hoping that you guys might be able to help me with something. I'm corresponding with someone from an ESP who says that Spamcop reporters contact him and ask why that ESP "refuses" Spamcop reports. They don't refuse them; we decline to send them because our policy is to only send reports to ESPs that send only confirmed opt-in (COI) email.

I pointed out that the language on the site says "reports are disabled for abuse[at]example.com", which I think is pretty neutral language. It doesn't say "abuse[at]example.com refuses Spamcop reports." He asserts that there must be some language or messaging somewhere that causes reporters to believe that this ESP actively refuses reports. This is possible, but I don't see it.

So, just out of curiosity:

Did you know that Spamcop doesn't send reports to ESPs that don't meet our COI policy?

Did you know why we don't or that such a policy was in place?

Do you think that ESPs in general refuse reports? If you do, why do you think that?

When you see "reports are disabled for [address]," what does that make you think about that network?

Thanks for answering! I'm definitely interested in your responses.

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Hi!

<snip>

Did you know that Spamcop doesn't send reports to ESPs that don't meet our COI policy?

...I was aware that SpamCop sometimes elects to not send reports for reasons other than the ESP refusing to accept them but I was not aware (or did not remember) that one reason was failure to meet a COI policy.
Did you know why we don't or that such a policy was in place?
...No (or I did once but do not now remember).
Do you think that ESPs in general refuse reports? If you do, why do you think that?
...No, I see that message in relatively few of the parses of my spam.
When you see "reports are disabled for [address]," what does that make you think about that network?

<snip>

...That either SpamCop decided, for whatever reason, to not send reports, perhaps because reports bounce, or that someone responsible for the abuse address has requested that reports not be sent.

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and I thought the term was ISP (Internet Service Provider)...I hope you don't mean Extra Sensorial Perception (ESP)

Edited by dra007

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and I thought the term was ISP (Internet Service Provider)...I hope you don't mean Extra Sensorial Perception (ESP)

An ESP is an Email Service Provider. An example that's been in the news lately is Epsilon. ESPs manage marketing mail for companies but send from their own networks.

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I think I speak for everyone when I say that we are annoyed to see devnulled reports and that we are suspicious of the real motivation for it, but I also think most of us are not explicitly aware of any justifications for Spamcop policies, let alone why reports are not being sent..so thank you for that clarification!

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I think I speak for everyone when I say that we are annoyed to see devnulled reports and that we are suspicious of the real motivation for it, but I also think most of us are not explicitly aware of any justifications for Spamcop policies, let alone why reports are not being sent..so thank you for that clarification!

There are basically only a few reasons we don't send reports:

1) We know the entity listwashes.

2) Reports are bouncing.

3) The responsible party told us they didn't want reports.

4) It's a non-COI ESP.

We'll re-enable reports if whatever is causing bounces is fixed, or if the recipient organization has a change of heart and decides they would like reports.

We do not send reports to non-COI ESPs because of the risk of listwashing. Rather than make a case-by-case judgment, we decided to just apply a policy.

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I think I speak for everyone when I say that we are annoyed to see devnulled reports

<snip>

...Not for me! I completely accept that "the parser does what it does for a reason" and am extremely grateful for such a free service that saves me so much time and so rarely results in glitches such as cause a report to not be sent, while taking into consideration the convenience of those to whom it sends reports as well as to us reporters. :) <G>

...[EDIT] On second thought, I guess I am a bit annoyed -- at the service providers who have asked to not receive reports or who do not have a valid abuse address that takes complaints or listwash! :) <g>

Edited by turetzsr

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You could maybe add the non-COI explanation (as an expansion of list-washing if you like) to the list presented - like at http://www.spamcop.net/sc?track=195.222.16.9

Parsing input: 195.222.16.9

No valid email addresses found, sorry!

  • There are several possible reasons for this: The site involved may not want reports from SpamCop.
  • SpamCop administrators may have decided to stop sending reports to the site to prevent listwashing.
  • SpamCop uses internal routeing to contact this site, only knows about the internal method and so cannot provide an externally-valid email address.
  • There may be no working email address to receive reports.

I don't believe I have seen the non-COI policy mentioned anywhere before.

On those occasions when people do see the message about an ISP refusing SC reports (in a parse result? I know it appears occasionally) they do tend to get annoyed with that provider. Sometimes the ISP simply refuses munged reports but I think that is spelled out when the parser resolves to such an address - I haven't seen that message in a while (or maybe I imagined it1).

No doubt some reporters assume the reasons for a devnull 'report' is always because of an actively report-rejecting provider because actual cases attract a lot more attention/comment than do those other reasons for not sending ISP/ESP reports. Maybe more links are needed to the wording of the "No valid email addresses found" explanation.

(edit) 1 - Ah, I see, I have had (for a long time) my report account Preferences - Report Handling Options - Ð…pam Munging set to Leave spam copies intact so the parser "knows" I don't need that warning.

Edited by Farelf

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I was hoping that you guys might be able to help me with something. I'm corresponding with someone from an ESP who says that Spamcop reporters contact him and ask why that ESP "refuses" Spamcop reports. They don't refuse them; we decline to send them because our policy is to only send reports to ESPs that send only confirmed opt-in (COI) email.

I pointed out that the language on the site says "reports are disabled for abuse[at]example.com", which I think is pretty neutral language. It doesn't say "abuse[at]example.com refuses Spamcop reports." He asserts that there must be some language or messaging somewhere that causes reporters to believe that this ESP actively refuses reports. This is possible, but I don't see it.

The infamous ins and out of the english language, compounded by the conceptions of the marketing hype for the SpamCop.net toolset, years of talking about the bad-guys in the newsgroups, Forum, etc. All combined to offer up that 'natural' feeling that disabled Reports carry an extremely evil connotation.

Did you know that Spamcop doesn't send reports to ESPs that don't meet our COI policy?

Did you know why we don't or that such a policy was in place?

This information does not exist in the 'official/original' FAQ. The existing Wiki pages on this subject are currently copies of the original FAQ. The only obvious place that mentions COI is found at SpamCop FAQ : Help for abuse-desks and administrators : Double/Confirmed Opt In which points to an external link, nothing to do with this Policy at all.

Do you think that ESPs in general refuse reports? If you do, why do you think that?

When you see "reports are disabled for [address]," what does that make you think about that network?

Considered a standard practice, in general, no. However, when the message appears, there is the thought that there is an issue. The follow-on issue there is that the reason is not always documented for some reason. i.e., sometimes in the lookup, there'll be a 'date added' entry, sometimes a justificaition, sometimes the re-routing of Reports data, sometime no data at all to reflect the 'no Rports sent' mode. There have been discussions where someone challenged/questioned the listing and the results included that no one could recall (or data didn't exist to explain) why the 'flag' was set to the no-report mode. To ne, then it boils down to whether it's worth the time and aggravation to persue.

Thanks for answering! I'm definitely interested in your responses.

The original/official FAQ issues have been beat to death for a number of years. The political scenario has prevented me from continuing to try to resolve the functionality of that tool and therefore a lot of the content. Your question and the following Discussion definitely points to the need of at least another Wiki page to outline this situation, in addition to Farelf's suggested expansion. I'd say that the obvious place 'here' would the Wiki page at SpamCop said ''No reports filed.'' What does it mean? which is an edited copy of the original FAQ entry at SpamCop said "No reports filed." What does it mean?

Going back to the current issues with the original FAQ, and noting that there are a number of folks 'here' that could jump in and add to / edit the Wiki page, this seems like yet another place where 'your' direct input would be ever so much more appropriate.

Further poking around suggests that the section Appeal disabled targets (members only, experts only) found at How should I select the recipients for my spam report? might need some updating also.

All that said: edited thus far;

The SpamCop.net Reporting process

SpamCop said ''No reports filed.'' What does it mean?

Help for Admins / Abuse Desks

Much later, new page started; SpamCop said ''reports are disabled.'' What does it mean?

several more pages edited to include links and references, some additional pages 'named' but not yet created.

Link added to the single-page-access-expanded version of the FAQ found 'here.'

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I think I speak for everyone when I say that we are annoyed to see devnulled reports and that we are suspicious of the real motivation for it

Actually, I'm not at all suspicious. I was aware of several of the reasons already outlined in this thread (and thanks for the extra info).

But I'm unable to offer anything to Kevin's request as I mostly use quick reporting so rarely see the devnull message.

Andrew

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As the tems in question and scenario were used in a reply in another Forum section today, bringing this Topic back up to 'new/unread' status for some folks, noting the lack of follow-up to respond to the feedback offered, never mind the Wiki work effort.

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I'm corresponding with someone from an ESP who says that Spamcop reporters contact him and ask why that ESP "refuses" Spamcop reports. They don't refuse them; we decline to send them because our policy is to only send reports to ESPs that send only confirmed opt-in (COI) email.

There is an ESP that wants to be legit but isn't using COI? In 2011? Really?

He asserts that there must be some language or messaging somewhere that causes reporters to believe that this ESP actively refuses reports. This is possible, but I don't see it.

Frankly if we (tinw) don't think enough of his service to send him reports, why consider his opinion or even talk to him?

Did you know that Spamcop doesn't send reports to ESPs that don't meet our COI policy?

No.

I'm surprised there are enough resources to identify an ESP and treat them differently. How do you know when new a new ESP comes on line? Do you actually sign up to each and every one to know they are COI compliant?

Do you think that ESPs in general refuse reports? If you do, why do you think that?

I would assume that legit ESPs using COI accept reports in order to keep their networks off blacklists and perhaps quickly ID bad or misinformed customers whose activities might get their networks on a blacklist.

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