[e2e] We do need anti-spam mechanism for e2e

David G. Andersen dga at lcs.mit.edu
Sat Dec 27 11:42:32 PST 2003

On Sat, Dec 27, 2003 at 05:04:13PM +0000, Jon Crowcroft quacked:
> there's a bit of a misunderstanding here - the spammers are mostly
> engaged in free market economics - if they kill the market, then they
> lose....not us...we never paid for this:-) we got 20 years of internet
> for practically nothing
> why complain when someone wants to make a buck? what we need to figure
> out is how to charge them and us the right amount to distinguish the
> activities...(viz slashdot article on the penny black project at
> microsoft)

  Another compelling reason for micropayments.  I'd love to not accept email
from unknown senders without a $0.01 micropayment attached.  Friends
and family get in free (or I'll gladly make the payment to send to 
them, and let the dynamics of email sort it out and not wory about $0.25).
This assumes that there's no per-transaction charge - the micropayments
would have to be some tiny cryptographic attachment to the message that
I could redeem them in bulk once per year.

  The problem with penny black is that it makes you spend resources
to email me (good), but it doesn't give those resources to me (or the
government/post office) for my trouble (bad).   I'd be happy to have
no spam, even at the cost of wasted resources, but I'd be equally or
more happy to be able to specify the price I charged for receiving 
spam.  Too much spam?  Charge $0.25.  Even at a penny per mail, I'd
receive about $1000/year for my troubles.  That kind of seasoning
would make spam taste a lot better.

  Can SMTP be munged to do this kind of negotiation?  A sender shouldn't
have to attach money to an email if the receiver doesn't demand it,
and also shouldn't have to worry about it within certain ranges 
("I'll pay up to $0.02 per email up to 100 per day, no questions asked").
Or do we need the ECLS (email cost lookup service) - I send in my
public key and the recipient, and get back a number that I have to pay.
Who _are_ the endpoints in this kind of negotiation?  Now that we're
talking about money, it's a more serious question.

  How do mailing lists fit in to this?  :-)
How would ISPs/etc make an extra buck off of it?


work: dga at lcs.mit.edu                          me:  dga at pobox.com
      MIT Laboratory for Computer Science           http://www.angio.net/
      I do not accept unsolicited commercial email.  Do not spam me.

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