How to guarantee your email will be categorized as spam

Originally published at: How to guarantee your email will be categorized as spam | Boing Boing


Would adding a few hundred fake recipients to the BCC field be a stealthier way to do it?


I don’t see the goal. If you’re doing it at work, then of course you’re in their address book, because it’s a company address book.
Help me out…

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If I ever send an email again, I’ll keep this in mind.


Curiously reminds an old mind of emacs “spook-bait” feature (which is still there, just type “M-x spook”) which was meant to add enough scary spy-filled terms to get your email routed through the dark federal databases; and thereby (i guess) to defeat their efforts by over-topping their databases. ah for the innocent days of spy-vs-spy

Anyway! As a service to the community, here’s the sort of normally “invisible” spam-catching terminology this fine feature adds:

#1 $$$ 100% Act now Action Additional income Affordable All natural/new Amazed Apply now Avoid Be amazed/your own Bitcoin boss Beneficiary Billing Billion Bonus Boss Buy Call!!! free/now Cancel Crypto Cash Casino Certified Cheap Click here Clearance Collect Compare rates Congratulations Credit card/check/offers Cures Deal Dear friend/somebody Debt Discount!!! Direct email Don’t delete/hesitate Double your income/cash Earn Extra Expire Fantastic Free!!! access/money/gift Freedom Friend Get it now/started/paid Great Guarantee Hello Income Increase sales/traffic Instant Investment Junk Limited Lose Lowest price NFT Luxury Make $/money??? Medicine Money Name!!! No credit check/experience Now Obligation Offer Only Open Order now Please Presently Problem Promise Purchase Quote Rates Refinance Refund Remove Request Risk-free Sales Satisfaction!!! Save Score Serious Spam Success Supplies Take action Terms Traffic Trial Unlimited Urgent!!! Weight While supplies last Win Winner XJSC4JDBQADN1.NSBN32IDNENGTUBE-STANDARD-ANTI-UBE-TEST-EMAILC.34X

(sort’ve sounds like my brother-in-law) TIL: a probabilistic spam key word includes the word “Spam”


That’s not got much Spam in it.


What is a good email reader that can show all the text? I’ve tried the popular ones (Gmail and Outlook apps) but haven’t found any non HTML rendering options.

Why? Because I receive promotional email that appears to have text that might sound interesting. The email readers show the first line of the emails but when I open them up, they’re all pictures, which my reader is set to not download.

In the gmail web interface, try using the “show original” feature. Like all Google interfaces, it has the interesting stuff buried under one of about half a dozen hamburger menus on the screen at the time. The one you’re looking for here should be in the top right corner of the specific email (not the thread)


Yeah, I’m failing to imagine when you’d want to send an email but not have the person see it when they received it (and you’re not in their address book). Seems like, at best, it’s a prank you’re playing on yourself.

You are right on about the origin of the term “spam”. My remembrance was that it was first used in the Usenet group to refer to unsolicited and unwanted commercial solicitations on the message board. People were complaining about such a message on the group when someone chimed in with “I don’t like Spam!”. Thus, the term was born.

Wikipedia History of email spam - Wikipedia credits a different Usenet group. I never visited that group, but I did frequent in the early '90s, and I’m sure that I remember the discussion. I’d bet that the thread is still out there, but I haven’t be on Usenet in at least a decade.


I guess it could be a really passive aggressive way of sticking it to your employer by ruining your domain’s trust ranking. Until someone caught the text in your footer.


Just tested it by sending from my work email to my private gmail address. Complete fail - it immediately appeared in my gmail ‘priority’ inbox.


So this not only serves no purpose, but also doesn’t work?

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(Though nowadays I use a thing called “TheBat!” instead, since it gives me lots of control over what I do and don’t see.)

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Thanks for showing me the Gmail “show original” option.

I don’t suppose there’s any way to view the original email on Android?

None of the email clients I know well exist for Android. Outlook does, and in both Outlook for windows and in Windows Live Mail through a browser (which appears as Outlook) you can right-click on a message and view the full source, without opening the email. I don’t know if the Outlook Android app has this useful functionality.

ETA: could you set up an always-on windows or linux machine somewhere dedicated to email, then access it using VNC for Android? That way, if you get hit by malware, it only take out the email machine, which - since it isn’t used for anything else - can be restored without problem.

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