The From Line

Sending, Managing & Monetizing Email

Spam Filters - Don't Be the Catch of the Day

For those of us who receive way too many solicitations for Viagra and pornography, Spam filters are a blessing. Switch to the legitimate marketers’ side and Spam filters can become the enemy. These days, it is very important to differentiate your email campaigns – containing valuable and relevant content – from dreaded ‘Spam.’

Before you can keep your opt-in email out of the Spam filter's reach, you have to learn a little about the kinds of Spam filters available. Currently, options range from those installed by an ISP, to those that run with another program, like Microsoft's Outlook. Some filters use a point system to determine whether or not a piece of email is Spam. Points are based on pre-determined definitions of Spam. The more points a particular email collects, the more likely it is to be Spam. Others not only filter based on key words, but also allow users to submit Spam to then be blocked for other users.

The other component you'll need to be aware of is the ‘blacklist.’ Most Spam filters use some sort of blacklist of known Spammers to block emails. Blacklists are primarily compiled by volunteers. In other words, you mail them the Spam you receive in your inbox, they take a look at it and then decide whether or not to add the sender to their list.

Because Spam filters have both a computer component (such as the points system), and a human component (such as the blacklists), you'll need to make sure your email communication doesn't raise flags in either group.

Gold Lasso has some simple guidelines to alleviate the possibility of being labeled as spammers – or even worse – losing interested prospects.

From Line:
Always use a legitimate contact or organization name.

Subject Lines:
Do not use quotation marks, numbers, symbols or exclamation points.
Keep it simple and relevant to content.
Do not use all CAPS.
ALWAYS have a subject line!
Do not use FREE, WIN, MORTGAGE, NOW – ‘sales’ words like this will almost ALWAYS be blocked.
Do not use “G.a.p.p.y T.e.x.t” or whitespace between words.

Email Body Copy:
Be straightforward – short and sweet gets the best results.
Do not use “Click Here” excessively.
Do not use the word “Free.”

Opt-Out:
ALWAYS have an opt-out link
Make it clear, concise and simple.
Unfortunately, in the quest to clobber the abundance of Spam, legitimate email marketing gets caught in these filters.

Take the time to follow the guidelines above. You'll have much better success in reaching your target audience and continuing effective communication.

Michael Weisel is Chief Technology Officer at Gold Lasso,Inc. He can be reached by telephone at 301-990-9857 or via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Visit Gold Lasso at http://www.goldlasso.com.

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Pending Spam Legislation - What's all the Buzz About?

You can barely read two lines in any marketing publication these days without ‘spam’ articles and commentary jumping out at you like a sore thumb. But what’s all the buzz about?

The definition of ‘spam’ is purposely vague because everybody has their own definition. As it currently stands, spam is in the eye of the beholder. Some spammers argue that spam is not any different than traditional junk mail, but there is one undeniable difference... cost. The cost of sending junk mail through conventional means is very high, including postage costs paid by the sender. The cost of sending spam is minimal and most of the costs are paid by people other than the sender.

While the monetary costs of emailing are small, there are other non-monetary costs that junk emailers face; the risk of getting kicked off of their ISP or webhost, plus the risk of tarnishing their name within the legitimate marketing community.

As a result of the increasing volume of spam, fraudulent emails have become a widespread nuisance. According to the Federal Trade Commission and its actions against spam, a fraudulent email is spam containing deceptive content, misused identity or a misleading subject line. It is this fraudulent spam that has created the chaos within the marketing industry. Marketing organizations, are now taking a stand against spam – to protect consumers and participation in online commerce.

With the flooding of news and information on pending spam legislation, it is extremely important to understand the content and implications of the bills pending legislation in 2003-2004.

Anti-Spam Act of 2003

This bill, currently the most popular, would require all commercial e-mail messages to be identified as such (but not with a standard label, except for sexually explicit messages), and to include the sender's physical street address and an opt-out mechanism; messages relating to a specific transaction and consented to by the recipient would be exempt from those requirements. The bill would prohibit commercial e-mail messages with false or misleading message headers or misleading subject lines, and it would be illegal to send commercial e-mail messages to addresses generated by an automated dictionary attack. State laws that restrict the sending of commercial e-mail, regulate opt-out procedures, or require subject-line labels would be pre-empted; laws that merely regulate falsification of message headers would remain in effect.

Click here to review the bill http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/108hr2515.html

CAN-SPAM Act of 2003

The Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act

(CAN-SPAM) would require unsolicited commercial e-mail messages to be labeled (though not necessarily by a standard method) and to include opt-out instructions and the sender's physical address. The law would prohibit the use of deceptive subject lines and false headers in such messages. It would pre-empt any state laws that prohibit unsolicited commercial e-mail outright, but would not affect the majority of state spam laws.

Click here to review the bill http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/108s877.html

Ban on Deceptive Unsolicited Bulk Electronic Mail Act of 2003

It would prohibit the inclusion of false information in message headers in unsolicited bulk commercial e-mail. It also would require senders of unsolicited bulk commercial e-mail to include opt-out instructions and honor opt-out requests, and would prohibit them from harvesting e-mail addresses of potential recipients from web pages and other sources.

Click here to review the bill http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/108s1052.html

Computer Owners' Bill of Rights

The Computer Owners' Bill of Rights would require the Federal Trade Commission to establish a "do-not-email" registry of addresses of persons and entities who do not wish to receive unsolicited commercial e-mail messages. The FTC would be empowered to impose civil penalties upon those who send unsolicited commercial e-mail to addresses listed on the registry.

Click here to review the bill http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/108s563.html

Criminal Spam Act of 2003

The Criminal Spam Act of 2003 would prohibit unauthorized or deceptive use of a third party's computer for relaying bulk commercial e-mail messages. It also prohibits the use of false header information in bulk commercial messages, and regulates the use of multiple e-mail accounts or domain names for purposes of sending such messages. The law would apply only to quantities of more than 100 messages within 24 hours, or 1000 within 30 days, or 10,000 within one year.

Click here to review the bill http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/108s1293.html

REDUCE Spam Act of 2003

Under The Restrict and Eliminate the Delivery of Unsolicited Commercial Electronic (REDUCE) Mail or Spam Act of 2003, unsolicited bulk commercial e-mail messages would be required to include a valid reply address and opt-out instructions, and a label ("ADV:" or "ADV:ADLT", or other recognized standard identification). These requirements would apply to messages sent in the same or similar form to 1,000 or more e-mail addresses within a two-day period. In addition, false or misleading headers and deceptive subject lines would be prohibited in all unsolicited commercial e-mail messages, whether or not sent in bulk.

Click here to review the bill http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/108hr1933.html

Reduction in Distribution of Spam Act of 2003

This bill would require all commercial e-mail messages to be identified as such (but not with a standard label, except for unsolicited sexually explicit messages), and to include the sender's physical address and an opt-out mechanism. It would prohibit the use of false or misleading headers in commercial messages. State laws that prohibit unsolicited commercial e-mail, regulate opt-out procedures, or require subject-line labels would be pre-empted; laws that merely regulate falsification of message headers would remain in effect.

Click here to review the bill http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/108hr2214.html

Stop Pornography and Abusive Marketing Act

This bill would establish a national "no-spam" registry, and make it unlawful to send unsolicited commercial messages to addresses on that list. The list would be administered by the FTC, using fees paid by marketers for access to the list. The FTC would be empowered to prohibit explicit commercial messages to minors even if they were not on the list. All unsolicited commercial messages would be required to use a label ("ADV:") at the beginning of the subject line, except those sent in compliance with an FTC-approved self-regulatory program. It would be illegal to send any commercial e-mail in violation of an Internet service provider's policies, or with a false or misleading subject line or message header, or to harvested addresses; all commercial messages would be required to include the sender's physical address.

Click here to review the bill http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/108s1231.html

Wireless Telephone Spam Protection Act

The Wireless Telephone Spam Protection Act would prohibit the use of wireless messaging systems to send unsolicited advertisements.

Click here to review the bill http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/108hr122.html

For a detailed list of spam laws by state, visit www.spamlaws.com. Do not hesitate to voice your concerns or opinions to your state representative. To contact your state representative, go to www.house.gov and search by zip code.

Danielle Ashery is Marketing Director at Gold Lasso,Inc. She can be reached by telephone at 301-990-9857 or via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Visit Gold Lasso at http://www.goldlasso.com.

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The Email Monetization Playbook
Email Monetization Playbook
69 Must Scan Pages For Publishers!

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Email Monetization Playbook
69 Must Scan Pages For Publishers!