Sins Of The Internet: Email Spiders

Written by Richard Lowe

Continued from page 1

One ofrepparttar more popular email harvester programs is called EmailSiphon (a product known as Sonic). The web site which promotes this garbage hasrepparttar 109665 following to say:

"First of its kind onrepparttar 109666 market, Sonic helps you extract highly targeted email addresses from World Wide Web pages. Earthonline Internet marketing expertise has enabled us to program a powerful, yet sensible product that allows for proven focused lead harvesting. Therefore, Sonic with its search engine ability and single domain capability is only second in World Wide Web extraction to Earthonline Nitro."

Obviously these scumbags think they are doing a great service torepparttar 109667 world by providingrepparttar 109668 opportunity to scan thousands of sites per day for email addresses.

Okay, so what can you do?

Ask them politely - With most "good" spiders, this is very easy to do. You simply create a robots.txt file or userepparttar 109669 robots metatag (if you don't know what those are, don't worry about it). Unfortunately, email harvesters are written by and used by scum, so they typically ignore polite requests.

Block them - On some web servers this is possible using special commands in a file called htaccess (again, don't worry about it if you don't know what that is), but only with those robots that clearly identify themselves. For those that don't tell you who they are (and some of them do not), then you cannot block them. In addition,repparttar 109670 web host has to be specially set up to allow you to do this - and most, in my experience, are not.

Confuse them - Some webmasters create page after page of fake email addresses. These pages are not intended for people or good spiders (the robots metatag is used to keeprepparttar 109671 good one's out) but rather are made attractive to email harvesters. The theory is simple -repparttar 109672 harvesters will not be able to resistrepparttar 109673 temptation (they are not very bright, as programs go) and will scan these pages. They will grab dozens, hundreds and then thousands of fake addresses, thus wastingrepparttar 109674 spammers time and possibly causing their programs to crash.

Does this work? Sure - occasionally, but it also does not preventrepparttar 109675 spammers from getting your other email addresses, and it still chews up resources (web servers and bandwidth) sending useless messages all overrepparttar 109676 internet.

Cloak your email addresses - One thing you can do that is fairly effective is to make your email addresses look like something else. Some people create a graphic image withrepparttar 109677 email address in it (not a great solution as it meansrepparttar 109678 email address must be retyped by your visitors). Others use JavaScript to makerepparttar 109679 email address look like code. These solutions work (usually), but they make it difficult to maintain your site and often make it more difficult for your visitors. In addition, presumablyrepparttar 109680 spam harvesters will eventually catch on and make their programs smarter.

Strip your site of email addresses - The only solution that works forrepparttar 109681 present time is to remove all email addresses from all of your web pages. If you need to get your visitors to send you information, then use a form (these cannot be harvested by spammers as long asrepparttar 109682 email address is not part ofrepparttar 109683 form itself - Bravenet is a good service to use for this purpose). If you don't put your email addresses directly on your site, thenrepparttar 109684 spammers cannot get it using their harvesters.

So there you have it. I hope this is of use to you in fighting this internet evil known as email harvesting.

Richard Lowe Jr. is the webmaster of Internet Tips And Secrets. This website includes over 1,000 free articles to improve your internet profits, enjoyment and knowledge. Web Site Address: Weekly newsletter: Daily Tips:

There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch: Listbot

Written by Richard Lowe

Continued from page 1

Overrepparttar years, I have looked long and hard at Bcentral, and to tellrepparttar 109664 complete truth I found it to be a highly overpriced hodgepodge of hastily patched together offerings which was difficult to use and mostly of limited value. Even so,repparttar 109665 free version of Listbot was one ofrepparttar 109666 better list processing services available. Because of this (and because of Listbot's long history) it became very popular for small lists and very small businesses.

Of course, Microsoft is not really shutting down Listbot. No, what they are doing is attempting to get people to pay forrepparttar 109667 service, at a rate of about $269 per year. This price allows forrepparttar 109668 sending of 10,000 emails per month, and you can purchase more if you desire. You haverepparttar 109669 option of paying forrepparttar 109670 new service or moving your list elsewhere.

What's wrong with this? A good analogy isrepparttar 109671 710 freeway debate going on in Pasadena, California at this time.

Forrepparttar 109672 last 20 yearsrepparttar 109673 powers that be have been trying to build a 2 mile extension torepparttar 109674 710 freeway. The problem isrepparttar 109675 freeway extension will go through a beautiful, well established neighborhood. It requiresrepparttar 109676 demolition of a substantial number of old houses andrepparttar 109677 relocation of a number of people. On top of that, freeways tend to divide communities and isolate people from one another.

The people of Pasadena have made it clear over and over again that they do not want this freeway extension. However,repparttar 109678 government, in it's infinite wisdom, has, for whatever reason, been trying to get it built in spite ofrepparttar 109679 people's wishes.

The government has forgotten (or doesn't care) thatrepparttar 109680 houses that they want to tear down are inhabited by families, some of whom have been living there for generations. The freeway is "forrepparttar 109681 greater good" andrepparttar 109682 little folk, in other words normal people, don't count.

Large companies tend to haverepparttar 109683 same attitude. It didn't matter to Yahoo that hundreds of thousands of webmasters depended upon their ring system -repparttar 109684 only thing that mattered wasrepparttar 109685 bottom line. And it does not matter to Microsoft that tens of thousands of list owners, serving millions of people, depend upon their service. The only thing that Microsoft recognizes is that they are not makingrepparttar 109686 required amount of money from their service.

The argument that "free services no longer work" does not hold water. Listbot was free beforerepparttar 109687 incredible expansion in internet advertising, and it's certain that, with able and intelligent management,repparttar 109688 service could have remained free and profitable afterrepparttar 109689 collapse of internet advertising.

Is it wrong for a big company to want to make money for it's shareholders? Of course not. Shareholders are people with emotions and feelings as well. What is wrong isrepparttar 109690 destruction of a service which is used by so many people, which was profitable and could be made profitable again, simply to further corporate goals without a single thought or care forrepparttar 109691 people effected byrepparttar 109692 change.

Just as when Yahoo destroyed webring, tens of thousands of listmasters now have to scramble to find alternative list hosting services. Some will makerepparttar 109693 difficult choice to use a paid service, some will find free services and others (probablyrepparttar 109694 majority) will simply abandon their lists forever. This isrepparttar 109695 saddest part of this story - lists which have been lovingly maintained for years will simply be destroyed. These lists will be burned inrepparttar 109696 name of corporate profits.

It's sad and pitiful atrepparttar 109697 same time. Take note when you see these thoughtless and careless events occur - you are witnessingrepparttar 109698 results of incompetence at best and malicious evil at worst.

Richard Lowe Jr. is the webmaster of Internet Tips And Secrets at - Visit our website any time to read over 1,000 complete FREE articles about how to improve your internet profits, enjoyment and knowledge.

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