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Why I hate AOL - by LordInfidel

By LordInfidel ·
I recently had the mis pleasure of finding out some disturbing information.

After setting up a small netwk for a client of mine and connecting them to the net via dsl. I found that they could no longer send mail to AOL users.

I configured them a local smtp server. So I tested that the connection from my mail server to theirs was good.

telnet aolIP 25 and got this
<snip>
550 - The IP address you're using to connect to AOL is either open to the free relaying of e-mail, is serving asan open proxy, or is listed in the Dial-Up List operated by MAPS (www.mail-abuse.org). AOL cannot accept further e-mail transactions from your server until either your server is closed to free relaying/proxy, or your IP address is removed from MAPS Dial-Up List. For additional information, please visit http://postmaster.info.aol.com
</snip

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Rant cont'd

by LordInfidel In reply to Why I hate AOL - by LordI ...

OK, WTF?

My smtp server is not a open relay server. It is protected with a firewall and only allows internal users to connect to it and relay. And they need the proper credentials.

What gives.

So I do some more research i go to the mail-abuse.org site. Their must be some mistake, AOL, a big sender of spam, must be high.

And I find that since my client is on DSL and that their IP is dynamic. That the entire /16 Netblock that my ip sits on is blocked from sending mail to AOL (and others).

If you are unaware of MAPS and their Nazi agenda, read my letter to them below.

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Letter to MAPS DUL

by LordInfidel In reply to Rant cont'd

From: LordInfidel [mailto:LordInfidel@.com]
Sent: Sunday, December 08, 2002 7:45 PM
To: dul@mail-abuse.org
Subject: DUL, A irresponsible list

Let me first start off by saying that I whole heartedly agree that Public Open Relay servers should be closed. Any Open Relay Server found should be black holed.

However, That is not the goal apparently of the MAPS DUL. You nor any other agency has the right to say that I am not allowed to use a smtp relay server for my own personal use.

If my ISP says that I am not to engage in hosting my own servers, then I have 2 choices. Either abide by their acceptable use policy or find another ISP.

(cont'd)

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Letter to MAPS DUL -contd (2)

by LordInfidel In reply to Rant cont'd

You, however, have no authority to infringe on my right to use my own personal local smtp server. Closing off entire DUL NetBlocks is not the answer.

When, on my corporate network, if I either see attempts of mail relay thru my mail server (which is turned off for relaying) or I receive lot's of spam from a particular mail server. I make an attempt to contact that mail servers owner first.

If that fails, I then contact both them and their ISP stating that I am not accepting further connections from said mail server until it is closed from relaying. Then I report the server to the ORDB (www.ordb.org)

That is a responsible action.

In the case of dial-up users that do not keep the same IP. An attempt first can be made to the reply-to address in the e-mail. If that fails, then the ISP to whom that IP belongs to should be contacted, with a copy of the e-mail.

It is then the responsibility of the ISP to take action against the user if that said user violates their (the isp's) acceptable use policy.

Internet users in general are uneducated in what spam is and automatically think that every piece of mail is spam and should be stopped. I too receive hundreds of e-mail spam. I just delete them, the same way I do with junk mail coming to my house.

All to often I see Spam-Cop abuse messages coming to my mail box because some user out there received an e-mail and did not want to follow the opt-out instructions. 99% of the time, the e-mail was not even from our company. It just made mention of one of our websites. I then have to take time out of my day to respond back to Spam-Cop and the end user informing them that they should use the clearly labeled opt-out link in the e-mail and read the headers of the e-mail.

(cont'd)

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Letter to MAPS DUL -contd (3)

by LordInfidel In reply to Rant cont'd

Users in general are irresponsible in their reporting of spam. While I can accept that from end users. I can not accept irresponsible behavior from an organization that claims to want to end spam.

What is even more irresponsible is your statements in http://mail-abuse.org/dul/participants.htm urging ISP's to filter traffic. This is not the ISP's responsibility or job. You can not and should not suggest or encourage such port filtering at the ISP level. With the exception of known, security practices at the router level to prevent DoS attacks.

Your theory is like saying that since there are bank robbers, we should close down all public access to banks unless you are a member of that bank.

Your Analogy of the Land Owner and the Duck hunter is a lame attempt to legitimize your actions (letter to Mr. MacMillan http://mail-abuse.org/dul/letters.htm). First off, there is not just a handful of us legitimate users. That is just plain ignorant. Second, in your analogy, it is the LAND OWNERS right to say that no one can duck hunt on his property. No one else has the right to say that he HAS to allow duck hunters.

If my ISP says I can not operate a smtp server then it is their right to do so.

What you are doing isequivalent to the Mafia Style shakedowns of a neighborhood. In essence if an ISP does not play your game, you block their Dial Up users e-mail. Forcing them to join you.

You can't control the net. I suggest that you stop being part of the problem and become part of the solution.


LordInfidel

(This e-mail was sent thru a local smtp server on a DSL DHCP issued IP)

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My closing remarks on the subject

by LordInfidel In reply to Letter to MAPS DUL -contd ...

yes, this pisses me off.

No one, other then my ISP has the right to say that I should not be able to send thru my own mail server.

What's next, if your machine IP is not in the same netblock or ISP that the mail server is in, it too will be rejected?

The MAPS is just a ignorant attempt to force it's views onto others.

I really hope that the ISP's out there recognize the irresponsible behaviour and infringment on our rights this is.

As for AOL. Their presence on the list as a participant is arrogant and hypocritical.

If you notice though, ISP's such as AOL who become members, their mail servers will *never* make it on the block list.

F*&!#ng hypocrits AOL makes me sick

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I agree with you totaly

by zlitocook In reply to My closing remarks on the ...

AOL has become a monster! I know every one will not like this but!!! AOL is following Microsofts lead, you do what we like or you dont do any thing with our software. I could post what the AOL tech. help said to do to my computer after upgrading to 8.0 but it would take 10 post or more. I have to use AOL but would switch in a hot second if I could.

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Why do you have to?

by LordInfidel In reply to I agree with you totaly

?

Me very confused as to why you are forced to use it.

From your peer directory listing you should be able to get another provider or at least get yourself DSL.

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Heh! married with children

by zlitocook In reply to Why do you have to?

Al Bundndy in computers! The wife loves AOL and has all her stuff configered for it. I just got her using Win98 at home last year. And I became a contract worker in july, so she makes more money! I can setup a $500.000,000 company and secure it. ButI can not upgrade my home system I want back in the work force!

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I don't give my wife the option

by LordInfidel In reply to Heh! married with childre ...

But then again, when I renovated my house, I wired up every room.

I have my own office w/dsl that is also the server room. Which houses my firewll, router, mail server, file server, gaming machine. Plus a workbench for my test network.

But then again, I also have my own domain name so I don't need to rely on external ISP's for their domain.

Wish I had advice for the workforce thing. I know it sucks right now.

I actually got a tip for a very large 100,000+ plus world wide company,applied (granted I am over qualified for the position, but it is a larger org then where I am at, plus alot more cash, it would be my first real shot at 6 figures) and they have not called me for an interview.

And I live 5 minutes away from theircorp office.

Go figure.

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Market Pressure

by Oldefar In reply to Why I hate AOL - by LordI ...

If I understand the problem correctly, your client cannot send email to AOL recipients because of AOL policy. AOL has taken a position of too bad, so sad, we don't care.

If these AOL recipients want email from your client, it seems the solution would be for them to change services. Perhaps you should advise them (via an unblocked email address) that they will be unable to receive this important mail from you because of AOL policy on what they are allowed to receive, and suggest several alternative services they could switch to.

It may be that sufficient users will switch, forcing AOL to change its position. If so, you win. It may be that the recipients you hope to reach will switch to receive messages from your client. If so, you win. It may be that your intended recipients don't find sufficient value in receiving email from your client. If so, AOL is right.

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