Spam From Fine Art Photo Supply

Discussion in 'Large Format' started by bob., Oct 9, 2002.

  1. Slightly off topic but as the only place I use this email address is
    on this forum, I am interested to know if any one else has received
    unsolicited advertising e-mail (a.k.a. spam) from Fine Art Photo
    Supply today - it appears that they have used this forum to generate
    their spam-mailing list, contrary to the declared policy of
    photo.net.

    It amazes me that spammers think making other people pay telecomms
    costs to download their unwanted adverts is a great way of impressing
    prospective customers of their honesty, integrity and plain good
    manners.

    I have news for you guys - it just shows what an arrogant bunch of
    3rd-rate ****** you are. I will now NEVER do business with you. If
    you want to lump yourselves in with porn-site operators, chain letter
    senders, pyramid schemers and other assorted spamming trash, that's
    up to you, but don't start crying when your ISP kills your account
    for breaching their Acceptable Usage Policy by sending spam.

    The spam was send via a siteprotect.com mail server (who also host
    their web site) using a computer with an IP address belonging to
    Frontier Communications (frontiernet.net). So that's two ISPs who's
    AUPs have been breached - as well as photo.net's T&Cs.

    .

    (****** = insert favourite expletive)
     
  2. They have done this before. I asked how they got my email list. Their reply was they would have to talk to their "web guy". I reported them to abuse@Photo.net who asked me to forward the spam email to them. I did and of course didn't receive a reply. fine art photo supply are registered here under the name "Vicki Guidice", email address FineArtPhotoSupply@frontiernet.net
     
  3. In my role as the main moderator of this forum, I've contacted Fine Art Supply and I hope that they will explain how they collected the email-addresses and why they misused them.<br>
    I will report back to the forum as soon as my discussion with them have concluded.
     
  4. The first time FAPS sent out spam to several photo.net members, I sent them an email informing them that they were in violation of the photo.net Terms of Use. I also offered them the opportunity to have a sponsored link on the site which would give photo.net members the ability to opt-in to mailings of their newsletter, which is actually quite interesting.

    I received a response that they had obtained the names from a mailing list vendor, and they claimed to have been told by the vendor that they were "opt-in" names and to be surprised that the addresses had been gathered without permission. They did not respond to my request to identify the vendor. And they did not follow up concerning my offer of advertising opportunities and/or an opt-in program.

    I don't believe that they obtained the addresses from a mailing list vendor. The messages seem too targeted at people in the LF list, and while names were formerly easier to harvest from photo.net than they are now, they weren't that easy to harvest before. If a mailing list vendor had harvested addresses, there would be more evidence of it. For example, we would have spam in various spam-trap addresses that we have set up, and we don't. I think the earlier comment that the names were gathered in low volumes by hand is probably true.

    While the mail from this vendor is perhaps not technically "spam" -- that is, unsolicited commercial bulk email -- it is clearly unsolicited and commercial. The only debatable point is "bulk". Gathering addresses from photo.net for unsolicited commercial email is a violation of the photo.net terms of use, spam or not.

    I am going to ban the user accounts associated with FAPS, and if we receive further reports that they are sending unsolicited mail to photo.net member addresses, photo.net will pursue its legal options to enjoin FAPS from using our servers without our permission for a purpose of which we strongly disapprove and which furthermore violates our published Terms of Use.
     
  5. > The messages seem too targeted at people in the LF list, and
    > while names were
    > formerly easier to harvest from photo.net than they are now, they
    > weren't that
    > easy to harvest before.

    Brian,

    they are as easy as anything to harvest

    my inbox folder for this forum has as the reply address for the sender of every message posted.

    I set up my mail programme to collect those reply addresses and I have them as contacts in my address book as easy as pie. All nicely harvested.

    It's simple to get the all the addresses for posters on any of these forums.
     
  6. Here is the response we sent to the moderator. I was hoping he would have a chance to post a portion of this at least so it didn't look as if we never responded to him. [ It appears that Bjorn is on vacation. Tuan] "I can appreciate your position as the Moderator of the forum and would like to thank you for your approach to find out what is happening here. In response to the first question "How did you collect the email addresses?" There are lists available for purchase of email addresses as well as mailing lists. When one purchases or rents those lists you aren?t always aware of their origin, but naturally assume they are from a reliable source. These are expensive, especially for a start-up or small company. But if you can find ones that appeal to your intended customers it is money well spent. The last thing we want to do is antagonize potential customers. That loses business for us, and plants blood hungry tigers out there saying nasty things about us on the internet. Does that sound like something we would want? ? like a sound business strategy? As for Question 2 " Why did you do this, knowing that it?s against the forum policies?" This sounds to me like we?ve already been found guilty of collecting the names from your forum. As I mentioned above, these lists are expensive. There is no way to go through every name and screen it. The fact is we?ve bought a list already that we can?t just chuck out the window. One list we bought had about one hundred names that didn?t exist! So I also can?t guarantee that some of your Forum people aren?t on one of our lists and won't receive future emails. As for Question 3: If anyone on your forum gets anything from us that they don?t want all they have to do is reply "Delete". We will make sure that they never get anything from us again. It costs us time and money to have the Newsletter sent. Lots of money. I?m getting very sick and tired of being attacked like I?m doing something illegal every time we do a mailing. The list is fairly large, and despite your presumption, there is no way to tell where each name was gathered from. All we can do is edit it. So - if some of your members get unwanted e-mail (and all we send out is an informative newsletter), have them just reply "delete". Not only will we never send them anything again; we?ll make sure we never do business with them. Otherwise, we have no way of knowing they don?t want it." And as for Brian's implication that we never followed up on the advertising issue--I did respond to Brian and never received a response from him detailing information about advertising.
     
  7. Tim: There are lots of ways to see addresses on this site, since we make them available to members in order to help promote contact between people of like interests, an important mission of the site. However, a web-crawling harvesting spider does not "know" that if it registers on the site, retrieves a password from an email mailbox, logs in, and posts a lot of forum messages that it will "see" the addresses of people who have requested alerts. Nor does it know the sequence of clicks and form-field entries to find a lode of addresses. Essentially this means that somebody would have to specifically target photo.net, rather than using generalized harvesting software. I am not saying that addresses can't be harvested, only that it requires a specific attack on photo.net, and we have not detected it being done in volume.

    Ms. Guidice: this is the same defense that you put forward when I challenged you two months ago. "I didn't take the addresses; my mailing list vendor did." I don't really believe in the existence your mailing list vendor, but accepting for the moment that he exists, you get to use this excuse only once. You continued to send messages to that list knowing that the addresses were harvested without the permission of the recipients. You are spamming, and as far as I am concerned you are violating photo.net's Terms of Use. You should realize, incidentally, that a better defense would have been what I suspect is the truth: you used your account here to identify people who might be interested in your shop and your newsletter and sent them messages. Since the newsletter is not without interest, if you had used your account to participate in the forums and personalized the messages even a little, people would not now be associating your business with the penis-enhancement and generate-an-income-with-your-computer spammers, and you might have found some customers. You don't have permission to use our servers any more.
     
  8. Vicki Guidice wrote: "I’m getting very sick and tired of being attacked like I’m doing something illegal every time we do a mailing."

    Don't get too sick and I hope you are getting enough sleep to remedy your tiredness. You are likely to get even sicker & more tires... Utah has a law making spamming ILLEGAL and the Attorney General is already prosecuting some of the jokers who do it.
     
  9. > Vicki Guidice wrote: "I’m getting very sick and tired of being
    > attacked like
    > I’m doing something illegal every time we do a mailing."
    >
    > Don't get too sick and I hope you are getting enough sleep to remedy your
    > tiredness. You are likely to get even sicker & more tires... Utah
    > has a law
    > making spamming ILLEGAL and the Attorney General is already
    > prosecuting some of
    > the jokers who do it.

    Shame they can't deal with the polygamy as effeciently... :)
     
  10. Right or wrong ...Fine Art Photo Supply needs to not be so defensive/arrogant and apologize to the forum members it offended. You need to come clean on this.Your future LF business is at stake.I personally like the newsletter but this whole ordeal has left a bad taste in my mouth.Coming clean will diffuse the negativity and get things back on track.
     
  11. Tim, Utah can't deal with the polygamists in any rational way. With an estimated 50-80,000 of them in the state and elected leadership, as well a Mormon Church leadership that almost all claim polygamy ties 2-4 generations back, it most likely will never be solved.
    The Utah state constitution makes it "illegal", but no penalties are attached. Though having seen some of the plural wives one might wonder if that isn't its own penalty. It does make for some lively discussion though. Wonder if I start a Polygamy museum if it would get much visitation? I could do photos & everything... maybe even sell "polyg-beds" & souvenirs?
     
  12. "Fine Art Photo Supply needs to not be so defensive/arrogant and apologize to the forum members it offended. You need to come clean on this."

    Emile, perhaps you didn't understand the last sentence of Brian's last posting. There doesn't seem to be any way for FAPS to post here even if it wished to take your advice.
     
  13. Too bad they (FAPS) aren't able to respond on this forum anymore.I think they should be allowed to in all fairness. Although... they did have the time to do so immediatly after the complaints began.Instead....they remained silent. There wasn't a reply from them either on the initial Ries post I made, after the promotion of their tripod over the Ries brought negative replies from some of the forum members.Oh well....water under the bridge.This really is very unimportant in the long run....as compared to whats happening in the rest of the world. Peace.
     
  14. I'll be glad when we have our own home again... I don't seem to recall having all the endless trolls, crazy "mr angry" posts and when will digital oust film messages before we came to photo.net...


    Maybe we are too in the mainstream here.
     
  15. I'll be glad when we have our own home again... I don't seem to recall having all the endless trolls, crazy "mr angry" posts and when will digital oust film messages before we came to photo.net... Maybe we are too in the mainstream here.
    hear, hear!!...certainly never read a moderator calling someone a liar and then ban them from the forum....sort of gives new meaning to the term "moderator"...Maybe Anthony was a little too "over the top" with his marketing, and I agree it was a mistake for him to keep quiet on this subject but it seems the "punishment" should fit the "crime". I certainly feel it was unfair to deny him the opportunity to answer. For example what if Anthony paid for a mailing list asking for LF phtographers, and the people who do this decided to harvest the addresses from photo.net? this could be easily done and FAPS would not have known about it. Anyway, I suppose is done, hopefully this forum will be moved soon!
     
  16. I just got one of their e-mails and I think it's just rude. There is so much junk there you have to get through every day. It's just very disappointing that somebody is using this really wonderful forum as a venue. I don't think there are any excuses, especially after so many members expressed their dissent. When Tuan and others originally set up this forum on another server, there was just so much idealism and sharing spirit. Together with photo.net, Fine Art Photo Supply takes a lot away from the free spirit on which the large format forum was originally based.
     

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