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HipCrime as MetaSPAM
The Hippie Of Crime <[email protected]> suggests that
anybody who puts a mailto: with their name on it is inviting mail,
so what he did shouldn't be construed as rude. He also asked that
remailer operators not block HipCrime SPAM deliveries and all
mail to HipCrime because people might be interested in his
cool fractals and Java neural net lotto-predicters and anarchist pages.
I disagree, on various points.
1) There's a Robot Exclusion Standard, which uses a robots.txt file
as a convention for websites to inform webcrawling programs
of sections of their directories they don't want crawled through.
The HipCrime Email Robot appears to ignore this convention -
I don't have a Java Decompiler on my Wimpy Win3.1 system,
but the strings program doesn't show the string robots.txt
anywhere in the bytecodes, which I assume means it ain't there.
2) If a mailto: on a web page is an offer to human readers to send mail
to a human or bot that handles mail relevant to some topic on the page,
that doesn't mean the author invited mail except as described in the
human-readable-language on the page, which may say which addresses
are invitations to send mail on what topic. Furthermore, the author
may not be the recipient of the mail anyway;
<a href="mailto:[email protected]">The Hippie Of Crime Lives Here</a>
3) An invitation to a reader to send mail from the reader isn't
an invitation to send a large number of identical mail messages.
A spam-generator like the Hippie Of Crime posted isn't designed
to add comments from the reader of the MetaSpamEmailRobot page,
it's designed to get many other people to send HippieSPAMs from the
Hippie Of Crime.
4) This isn't the first time he's done this sort of thing.
I took a look at the www.hipcrime.com pages, and aside from the
Annoying Frames and Highly Annoying Evil META REFRESH auto-flipping pages,
and Annoying Animated GIFs, there were some really cool-looking fractals,
and a saga about how a few years ago he was faxing fractals out to a
few hundred people who he'd put on a fax-mailing list, many without asking them.
Free FAX Fractals
Free-FAX-Fractals was a long running FAX prank/art project,
using facsimile machines to invade office spaces with monochrome
mathematical psychedelia. During 1992 and 1993, a list of over 500
fax numbers was compiled while roaming around San Francisco.
These numbers were taken mostly from signs and business cards,
but many people volunteered their numbers hoping to receive
trippy fractal faxes on a weekly basis.
Only a couple people actually complained, and the police _asked_ to
get added to the list.
5) "Anarchist Info" - sigh. Where do people get the idea that publishing
recipes for drugs and explosives is anarchist info? He didn't talk
about anarchy, or getting along without governments, or getting rid of them.
Also, he neglects to note that you can simply _buy_ potassium chlorate,
rather than having to (dangerously) boil down bleach and potassium chloride
to make the stuff. Don't try this crap at home, kids, and please don't
blame the anarchists for it.
Just a Hippie Of Crime, not a Hippie Of Clue.
# Thanks; Bill
# Bill Stewart, +1-415-442-2215 [email protected]
# <A HREF="http://idiom.com/~wcs">
# You can get PGP software outside the US at ftp.ox.ac.uk/pub/crypto