At 2003-03-22 11:42:45 +1100, my mail server received another note from the PR department. The usual copy-and-paste job follows.
Received: from web13301.mail.yahoo.com ([126.96.36.199]) by
perfect.epsilon.com.au with smtp (Exim 3.35 #1 (Debian)) id
18wX5x-0001gU-00 for <email@example.com>; Sat, 22 Mar 2003 11:42:45 +1100
Received: from [188.8.131.52] by web13301.mail.yahoo.com via HTTP; Fri, 21
Mar 2003 16:42:43 PST
Date: Fri, 21 Mar 2003 16:42:43 -0800 (PST)
From: General Kolok <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Your Recent SPAM Problems
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
It has come to our attention that you may be blocking
certain IP's in the chain of proxies we use to
communicate, and therefore may have not gotten our
To recap, I am an intelligence officer with the United
Email Freedom Front.
You have been targeted for Violations of the UEFF code
of ethics and are considered a threat to freedom on
In short, you should have been contacted earlier by
commanding officer of the enforcement unit with a list
of demands. I have attached the demands at the bottom
of this email.
The UEFF, and organization of almost 700, has already
fired a small warning shot to get your
attention...obviously it has, a small outage and
blatant Spam apologies have been reported on your site
by our intelligence units showing that you "got the
It is my job to convince you to submit to the
General's requests and save you lots of grief. Please
consider the changes...YOU NOW HAVE ONLY THREE HOURS
to comply. If not a major offensive will begin, ten
times that of which you've seen already. The "warning
shot" was undertaken by two units for twenty minutes.
a real offensive will last eternally and be assigned
to twelve units...you get the picture.
Nobody (WEBSITE) has ever survived a confrontation
with the Unit. Please for all that is good in the
world, take my advice and make the changes, life is to
short to let your pride get in the way. Once
compliance has been verified by intelligence, we will
retreat fully (although you will be on our monitoring
Attached is the General's last email.
CO Special Intelligence Unit - Gen.Kolok
As you may know, you have been targeted by the
Enforcement Unit of the UEFF (United Email Freedom
Front). you should have been contacted last night by
an intelligence officer.
You have exactly 24(now 3) hours to effect the
changes or we will consider it an act of engagement.
In the event of engagement all units will be mobilized
against you, your site, and associated ISP's until the
changes are made, or you no longer exist. In the event
of a full cooperation, we will withdraw and ceasefire
1-In Article "Make Money Fast!"  the text " If ever I
encounter one that's in my local area, I will
seriously try to resist the urge to go and break all
their fingers, satisfying myself with reporting them
to the police only. What percentage of these would-be
millionaires do you suppose are merely underage and
insufficiently wise in the ways of the world? And what
percentage need a damn good working over with a large
clue-stick?" Must be removed. - In violation of
violence toward emailers rule
2-In Article "Spam, Email, Innovation" the text "I
haven't given up the notion of designing and
implementing a new mail protocol that is designed to
be rather more hostile to spammers" must be removed. -
In violation of violence toward emailers rule
3-The Article "Spam: MonsterHut" must be removed. In
violation of Defamatory Remarks rule
4-All Articles referencing Richard Stallman be
removed, Or Replaced with "A certain writer we all
know" or something like that.  - In violation of
Defamatory Remarks rule
5-In the Article "Selling Spam Lists Respectably" The
article must be removed, or the company
"marketsharerecovery.com" replaced with a generic term
like "list reseller" etc. Any links to that firm
removed.  - In violation of Defamatory Remarks rule
6-All text regarding "TFBW Advocates Slow Torture For
Spammers" must be removed.
You may leave you current spammer message. DO NOT
MENTION THE UAFF.
Our judgment is final, we would expect full
cooperation within the deadline.
Commanding Officer - Xio-King
Do you Yahoo!?
Yahoo! Platinum - Watch CBS' NCAA March Madness, live on your desktop!
So, the PR guy was obliged to use a genuine Yahoo! webmail account because he thought my spam defences might have blocked him? Well, I'd actually turned off most of my spam defences, since I wanted to receive complaint messages where at all possible, rather than blocking or bouncing them. But that's neither here nor there: I can understand that my silence would be vexing, and I like it that way. I am resolved to make no response to their coercive demands.
The "outage" mentioned in this message was probably when I shut down Zope in order to do a backup of Nutters.org. I forgot to bring it up again for a while after that, and they probably got "proxy not responding" messages as a consequence of this. Sorry guys -- my bad.
My Zope setup allowed me to add a spam disclaimer at the top of every single page by modifying one file, and so I thought it only sensible to do that. I don't want to try to play "chase the link" as they send out new spams with new URLs, so I just blanketed the whole damn lot.
I also note that the size of their organisation has grown from "over 600 members" to "almost 700" since their last press release. I wonder if they're counting the owners of the open relays and proxies that they exploit as de facto members? Still just looks like a couple of script kiddies to me.