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If I must read a bit of spam, I'd rather it be ...

Displaying poll results.
About financial fraud (419 scams, etc).
  3662 votes / 19%
About medical claims (cheap Viagra, etc).
  392 votes / 2%
About sexual services (porn, dating services).
  4304 votes / 23%
About car parts and other sundries.
  977 votes / 5%
About otherwise legitimate sounding services.
  1205 votes / 6%
Words spelled out in potted meat product.
  8075 votes / 43%
18615 total votes.
[ Voting Booth | Other Polls | Back Home ]
  • Don't complain about lack of options. You've got to pick a few when you do multiple choice. Those are the breaks.
  • Feel free to suggest poll ideas if you're feeling creative. I'd strongly suggest reading the past polls first.
  • This whole thing is wildly inaccurate. Rounding errors, ballot stuffers, dynamic IPs, firewalls. If you're using these numbers to do anything important, you're insane.
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If I must read a bit of spam, I'd rather it be ...

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    About bitcoin

    • by darkonc (47285)
      I'd rather get the phone number and shipping address of the sender. I could have a lot of fun with that. (Actually, I used to have a lot of fun with that until they stopped providing direct contact info. No fun that way.)
    • What're you talking about? It's the first one on the list!

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Because they were so interesting:

    LITERATURE: The Internet entrepreneurs of Nigeria, for creating and then using e-mail to distribute a bold series of short stories, thus introducing millions of readers to a cast of rich characters -- General Sani Abacha, Mrs. Mariam Sanni Abacha, Barrister Jon A Mbeki Esq., and others -- each of whom requires just a small amount of expense money so as to obtain access to the great wealth to which they are entitled and which they would like to share with the kind person who assists them.

    http://improbable.com/ig/ig-pastwinners.html#ig2005 [improbable.com]

    • Exactly. The 419 scam stories can be fun to read simply because of the audacity of the storytellers.

      • by MBGMorden (803437)

        Glad to know I'm not the only one that reads them. It's like every time I get a new one I think "I wonder what our brave Nigerian Prince is up to in this week's episode!".

        • Yes prince Mbeki of the flashing eyes and booming baritone: charmer of ladies, freedom fighter, intellectual, and excellent dancer. It's really too bad what they've done to him over there. I can't wait to go fishing (phishing) with him in the Caribbean.

    • Because they were so interesting:

      LITERATURE: The Internet entrepreneurs of Nigeria, for creating and then using e-mail to distribute a bold series of short stories, thus introducing millions of readers to a cast of rich characters -- General Sani Abacha, Mrs. Mariam Sanni Abacha, Barrister Jon A Mbeki Esq., and others -- each of whom requires just a small amount of expense money so as to obtain access to the great wealth to which they are entitled and which they would like to share with the kind person who assists them.

      http://improbable.com/ig/ig-pastwinners.html#ig2005 [improbable.com]

      Exactly. One of the sleaziest which I received was just after the Concorde crash near Paris. A person claiming to represent a childless but wealthy German couple who had died in the crash sent me an email. The couple allegedly had squirelled away several millions in Swiss banks thus illegally evading German taxes. The "lawyer" was exhorting me to send a signed affadavit to the effect I was their legal heir, so that the inheritance could be redeemed and split with me. This signing of a false affadavit would

  • Some
    People
    Are
    Missing
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Spammers being clubbed to death

  • I've been getting a lot of Chinese spam lately. Not very interesting to me.
    • by xkuehn (2202854)

      I can only recognise a few Chinese characters, but all the Chinese (Usenet-)spam I've tried to decipher was quite obviously for porn. Lonely geeks must be bored behind the Great Firewall.

    • by dargaud (518470)
      I do get a lot of those too. I don't understand why it's not the easiest thing at all to filter out. I use kmail and I couldn't figure out a rule that said something like: if the message ain't in UTF-8 or LATIN or ASCII or whatever, then mark it as spam.
      • by bragr (1612015) *
        The last time I checked, UTF-8 can represent every Unicode character including Chinese, I think you are confusing UTF-8 with ASCII.
        • by dargaud (518470)
          I thought you needed UTF-16 or UTF-32 for that ?!?
          • No. First line from the wikipedia article [wikipedia.org] (emphasis mine): "UTF-8 (UCS Transformation Format — 8-bit) is a multibyte character encoding for Unicode. Like UTF-16 and UTF-32, UTF-8 can represent every character in the Unicode character set."

    • by Amouth (879122)

      i keep getting Chinese & Indian spam trying to sell me heavy industrial equipment

  • Time travel!

    But I guess that's not really spam.

    • by Chrisq (894406)

      Time travel!

      But I guess that's not really spam.

      It is in the time that I come from.

    • I think that would be a 419 spam.

      "Hello I am from the future, I will be your butler, my current master told me to contact you about this, I know exactly how the stock market will work for the next few decades, If you must pay my master (You is you in the future as you know) a modest sum of $100 where it will be invested most effectively. You will be a rich man. I know you wouldn't delete this email as you have already replied and paid the $100"

  • I predict that there will be a higher post per mod point ratio than any other poll on slashdot!

    Somehow I expect quite a few down-modded comments based solely on pr0n.
  • As a webmaster, I get a lot of those ones presumably from China and thereabouts that all say pretty much the same thing:

    Dear CEO,

    We are big important registrar and $FICTICIOUS_COMPANY wants to buy from us this follows:
    $YOUR_HOSTNAME.cn
    $YOUR_HOSTNAME.tw
    $YOUR_HOSTNAME.com.cn
    $YOUR_HOSTNAME.com.tw
    (et cetera)

    Sometimes the poor English can be entertaining.
    • The first time I got one of those, I had to stop and think about it for a minute. Then it all made sense. Why on Earth would I care if someone bought those domains?
  • by Zarhan (415465) on Wednesday July 06, 2011 @02:43AM (#36669606)

    Sometimes, I get spam in Finnish that has been clearly translated with some automated translator (google, babelfish). Makes for hilarious reads...

    • Exceptionally insightful:) I have gotten a few auto translated into Estonian. Hilarious reads indeed :D I may sound sane in some language with simpler grammar, but Estonian (just like its sibling Finnish) is full of funny pitfalls.
  • Recently I've bitten the bullet and started to use Facebook quite regularly. So sue me.

    What I noticed almost immediately about Facebook was the content of the ads on the right-hand side of my browser window: many "make money fast" and "work from home, just two hours a day" type of advertisements. I haven't really looked into what they offer, as they are typically frauds. If it sounds too good to be true, then that's usually the case.

    Now of course Facebook is in the business of selling ads, but it does mak

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by slackzilly (2033012)
      If you close the ads you get questioned about what you don't like about the ad, so they can tailor the ads to what you like.
      Everyday I click "offensive" on a lot of ads just to mess with the marketing scheme.
      • For a while I was "Widowed" on Facebook because when I cycled through the possible states, all of them generated women-for-sale ads except Widowed - which had a GT40 ad. I was hooked, and only recently gave in to honesty. That, and no more exotic car ads.

    • Facebook ads are geared towards your reported age, gender, geographic location and level of education as reported to Facebook in your profile. There may be other factors as well. My point is that they imagine that they're directing the ads at a receptive audience. The more that you use Facebook and they mine your FB chats, posts and mails, the more the ads should be tailored to you.
      • by wvmarle (1070040)

        My profile lists my gender and age only.

        Interestingly the ads are in Dutch (a preferred language in my browser) though my location (they can see that from my IP) is in Hong Kong.

    • My Church recently created a facebook page. I find it funny that I see adds to "Meet sexy women in your area" when I am reading about church news.
    • by CastrTroy (595695)
      This is what I don't get. Facebook has a very large, and very captive audience. Why can't they get real ads for serious products on their site? People spend more time on Facebook than they do watching NBC, but you don't see stuff like that on NBC (or any major TV network). Are serious companies not willing to pay for internet ads? Are these spammy companies willing to pay more? I'm not an advertising exec, but I think that Facebook would stand to make a lot more money if they only had ads from legiti
      • This is what I don't get. Facebook has a very large, and very captive audience. Why can't they get real ads for serious products on their site? People spend more time on Facebook than they do watching NBC, but you don't see stuff like that on NBC (or any major TV network). Are serious companies not willing to pay for internet ads? Are these spammy companies willing to pay more? I'm not an advertising exec, but I think that Facebook would stand to make a lot more money if they only had ads from legitimate companies selling real products.

        It's not that spammy companies are willing to pay more. It's that the cost of putting up a few ads is measured in dollars while a 30 second spot on a major network is likely measured in the tens if not thousands of dollars (or millions during the Super Bowl). Additionally, the major companies don't need to *pay* for advertising because they have their free facebook pages (i.e. advertisements) that people willingly go to.

        You have noticed that nearly every commercial on TV now includes a url for the company

    • by PhxBlue (562201)
      I don't see the ads. Adblock's a wonderful thing.
  • Because it's the only one that I would never handle through the internet in some form. If all spam came in a form completely irrelevant to me, then I wouldn't have to bother checking if things were scams.
  • by Huntr (951770) on Wednesday July 06, 2011 @04:38AM (#36670020)

    I have a piece of spam I've saved because it made me laugh:

    Dear Sir/Madam,

    We have logged your IP-address on more than 30 illegal Websites.

    Important:
    Please answer our questions!
    The list of questions are attached.

    Yours faithfully,
    Steven Allison

    *** Federal Bureau of Investigation -FBI-
    *** 935 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Room 3220
    *** Washington, DC 20535
    *** phone: (202) 283-7934

    That was from "Departament879@fbi.com" Like the FBI has a .COM address. Fantastic. Of course, I'm sure the "attached list of questions" is something nasty, so that's as far as ol' Steve and I went.

    • by amiga3D (567632)

      Just for grins I tried connecting to www.fbi.com and got this....

      "Firefox can't establish a connection to the server at 0.0.0.0."

      I don't think I've ever had that particular response before.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by KritonK (949258)
        I got the same behavior on a windows machine. The name resolves properly, but a couple of browsers, that I tried, visit 0.0.0.0, instead. On a Linux machine on the same network, I see an unconfigured apache server, so my guess is that the redirection to 0.0.0.0 is caused by my firewall or anti-malware program. BTW, a quick search with Google shows that the "list of questions" is actually the Sober-X worm: http://www.hoax-slayer.com/fbi-virus-emails.html [hoax-slayer.com]
        • Interestingly enough, fbi.com (it's IP address of 216.234.246.150) is owned by "HappyDays, Inc" which is run by a guy named Scott Day who owns a BUNCH of nice domain names. I don't know if he's a squatter selling them or what but he owns
          nutritioncenter.com
          watermelon.com
          watermelons.com
          watermelon.net
          fbi.com
          navigate.net
          navigate.com
          trucktrailors.com
          ...and probably many more. My guess is someone just spoofed his domain in their email. Or maybe this "Scott Day" is a spammer/virus-er.
        • by bloodhawk (813939)
          geez have tech skills dropped so low that people can't even recognise a HTTP redirect anymore?
      • by kiwix (1810960) on Wednesday July 06, 2011 @04:31PM (#36675850)
        http://www.fbi.com/ [fbi.com] replies with 302 Moved Temporarily to http://0.0.0.0/ [0.0.0.0]. That's why you browser goes to http://0.0.0.0/ [0.0.0.0].
  • Like an average /. reader needs Viagra...

    • by Abstrackt (609015)

      Speaking of Viagra, my personal favorite spam subject line was "Max Gentleman Enlargement Pills". Love it or hate it, some spam really makes you laugh.

  • by Just Some Guy (3352) <kirk+slashdot@strauser.com> on Wednesday July 06, 2011 @08:16AM (#36671112) Homepage Journal

    I feel kind of bad for Hormel, all the more so because they've been such great sports about people using "spam" to mean junk email. I know this is going to be heresy, but: I kind of like Spam (the meat product). I wouldn't want to eat out of the can with a fork, but my dad used to fry it with onions to make an awesome sandwich.

    • My favorite way of cooking spam is a method we used in boy scouts, fried on a rock in the fire. It got rid of a lot of the grease and had a nice smoked flavor. Frying it up with onions does sound delicious, was it cut into patties or just done up like hamburger is for tacos?

      Also if you are in Minnesota there is "Spam Town USA" according to the signs when entering Austin, MN. There you can visit the Spam Museum [spam.com] plus it is free and not government run so it is open even though the rest of the state is shut do

      • That sounds awesome! There's nothing that can't be improved by cooking it outside. Dad used to slice it maybe 3/8" thick; I've never tried it chopped.

        I live in northeast Nebraska, but the only time I've been to MN recently was when I was already in Sioux Falls for a softball tournament and drove far enough into MN to get my Gowalla badge.

    • by Amouth (879122)

      i was scared for life from eating spam after watching someone make it once.

      he took the can - opened the top and set it on a propane burner (one of the small backpacking ones).. as it warmed up and the grease came out we watched as the meat rose out of the can, when it was almost all the way out he turned the heat down and we just watched it slowly fall back into the can.. he then took it and ate it out of the can..

      sorry that much grease - there is zero way i could eat that stuff.

    • I feel bad for the people that work for Hormel, but for different reasons [motherjones.com].
    • Next to hot dogs and grilled cheese, SPAM sandwiches were among the first things I ever learned to cook. Pan fry 1/4" slabs of SPAM, sprinkle pepper and a little sugar. Alternative is sweet soy sauce. Really great tasting actually, the whole sweet/salty/greasy thing...

    • They've been such great sports.........except when they've sued about it [slashdot.org].
  • Just because they are so ridiculous I have always wanted to get a 419 scam spam e-mail. I have never gotten one and in a strange sort of way kind of always wanted to get one. I have gotten every other kind of spam so I feel left out.
    • Let me know your email address, and I'll forward a few dozen to you.
      • by Biff Stu (654099)

        I'll save you from some work. If the GP just posts his e-mail here, he will get way more spam than you can possibly send to him.

    • by jamesh (87723)

      Just post your email address to publicly accessible forums and it will happen.

  • by hansamurai (907719) <hansamurai@gmail.com> on Wednesday July 06, 2011 @10:37AM (#36672036) Homepage Journal

    I like the ones that sound legitimate, because it can be kind of fun investigating the background behind the phishing attack and seeing the new tactics being used to draw you in.

  • by Daetrin (576516) on Wednesday July 06, 2011 @10:58AM (#36672178)
    I don't always read spam, but when I do, I prefer... ?
  • Time Drive (Score:5, Interesting)

    by bpfinn (557273) on Wednesday July 06, 2011 @02:00PM (#36673940)
    I got a spam message about 10 years ago asking if anybody had a replacement engine for a time machine. I believe the alleged time traveler asked to meet the person with the spare engine in a park in Boston at a specific date and time. I can honestly say I've never gotten another spam quite like that.
  • My wife's favorite spam was titled: "Meet men with bigger breasts". She looks at me, bursts out laughing, and says "why would I want to meet men with big breasts?"

  • I had a spate of false viagra SPAMs, with the format...

    "Men used to laugh at my $string1 and women $string2 my $string3 until I took these miracle pills, and now I am built like a $string4"

    I never knew there were so many synonyms for the part of the male anatomy that the pills targeted. Mark you, I don't get out much.

  • by Tom (822)

    The only spam I'd enjoy reading is the (actual, not faked) suicide note of the spammer who can't resist sending out one last spam.

    I don't know what's up with spam these days. I have three layers of spamfilters (greylisting, spamassassin and in the mail client) and I still get more spam than ever before getting through.

    Can we please revisit the discussion about the death penalty for spammers? This time, I'd like to add that death is not enough, it should be long, extremely painful, and broadcasted on public

  • I actually enjoyed some of the bits and bobs of classic literature that had been run through a blender, cut, pasted, and formatted into paragraphs to get by word filters. Sometimes these little gems are buried in the mixed/multipart message that you don't actually see with web mail. It's been a while since I've used that kind of reader so I wonder if that technique was defeated.

  • The mental image conjured by "potted meat product" is kind of disturbing.

    "Oh, you've got a greenhouse? Look at all these pretty flowers! And what a lovely bonsai — WHAT THE FUCK IS THAT??? AND WHY OH GOD WHY IS IT GENTLY WAVING IN THE BREEZE???"

  • Transcripts of Monty Python skits
  • I'm having trouble with the basic concept. I can't imagine any circumstance where I'd voluntarily read spam, so that only leaves scenarios like: somebody is holding a gun to my head. In a case like that, I'm not going to care about the content, I'll read whatever spam you want to put in front of me. Sir. (Or Madam as the case may be.)

    So, I guess my answer is...short! :)

  • If I must read a bit of spam, I prefer it to be pure nonsense where I can't even tell what they're selling or where they want me to download malware from. I don't see 'em anymore, but does anyone else remember the randomly-selected text spams? Just a few paragraphs of poorly written text about anything, without so much as a clue as to what they're trying to manipulate me into doing. Even if I wanted to give into the spammer, I wouldn't know how. No promises of riches or a bigger penis. No green cards.

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from a rigged demo.

 



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