Monday, October 23, 2006

Read between the Ps: Missed Call Marketing (Australia) – Innovative Telemarketing or Cheap Spam?

Puru Gupta of Read Between the Ps provides an excellent discussion of a new type of telemarketing spam that has annoyed the Australian public. Read all about it at Read between the Ps: Missed Call Marketing (Australia) – Innovative Telemarketing or Cheap Spam? And hope that they don't call you next.
Speaking of stuff a person doesn't want to get, we know that email spam is high on most people's list. (OK, it's less troublesome than AIDS or herpes, but still...) I can usually identify and delete spam without having to look at it, but sometimes this can be a tough call. This evening I nearly deleted an email that turned out to be from a university staff person who needed to know the exact amount of last year's grant for some sort of reporting they do to the government on external funding. It was a follow-up to another university email, not some sort of suspiciously real-looking phishing scheme. However, the subject line wouldn't have prompted me to think one thing or another. She was just lucky I happened to open that email.
On the other side of things, another of today's emails that was definite spam really offended me. I mean, I can deal with spam that tells me I can enlarge my... ahem... male organ (I hadn't realized I had one handy to enlarge), or that I can make semen taste sweeter (I suppose sprinkling sugar on it would be one method)... that sort of spam is merely stupidly comic. However, this spam strikes me as both cruel and likely to be all too effective on all too many insecure people:
Listen, I am not sure whether you got my first email or not. I am sort of concerned. People are making me feel uncomfortable and I don't like being in the middle. Some of the staff are spreading rude jokes behind your back about your weight. I personally have no problem with you just being you. Please don't come back at me for informing. I just wish to help if anything. I thought about mentioning it to a boss but then to have something like this explode is silly and embarassing for everyone involved, including you being the center of attention. If you really want to make somewhat of a difference, I know my cousin and friend both used this and it worked very well for them. They grabbed it off the internet to keep a low profile & stay confidential. This was the site they got it from, if this helps any.
(link deleted)
Again, I don't like people insulting others behind their backs. I am only trying to help. Which I hope I am.
Thanks for at least listening & I hope I am not out of
line by writing this. I am only trying to help.

If this garbage isn't insidious and disgusting, I don't know what is. After all, most people do work for a boss, and a lot of people don't know the names of all their coworkers. We know a lot of people worry about their weight.
So... even if you have to look at some of your junk email, don't take it personally or click on the links in it!
That's your public service message of the day, as a change from any more updates on grant proposals (which I am sure no one really wants to read anyway).

5 Comments:

Blogger Julia said...

That is pretty awful spam. My preference is the type full of surreal writing (to get past the filters) and then odd recommendations for stock purchases. The question is - does anyone ever EVER take their advice?

October 24, 2006 10:28 PM  
Blogger pk said...

I have the phone problem solved. My mobile phone stays switched off, in a drawer. It's also not connected. Ha! Try spamming that!!

But unfortunately the cold cavassing calls from Bangalore still get through to the fixed phone. *sigh*

{and by the way...this is hard to post this comment - in ref to your other post. But I've not had any problems with blogger lately myself.}

October 25, 2006 10:04 PM  
Blogger pk said...

Actually, I take that back about blogger. If it was a boy I would so kick it in the goulies - I've been trying to upload 15 images for THREE hours. See the status page...outage in 6hrs from now. Oy.

October 26, 2006 7:12 PM  
Blogger Karla said...

Thought you might change your mind about Blogger sometime this week. But also I think our blogs are on different servers. I did get a server error message one time.

As for the "scheduled maintenance" yesterday, I was just glad not to be trying to post anything more than comments at the time. It also made Technorati think no one links to the blog. Not that Technorati's counts are ever accurate on that anyway...

October 26, 2006 8:52 PM  
Blogger Karla said...

I'm remembering that my answer to Julia's comment was one that got eaten. I want to know where the surreal texts in spam come from. Have no idea what most of those spams are even selling.

October 26, 2006 8:54 PM  

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