Spammers want to protect me from spam

I recently told a follower on Twitter to send me an email, and helpfully included the email in the tweet. I thought little of it; this is an email address that is published in plain text online because I want people to be able to find it easily. I am well aware that it will eventually get harvested by spammers, and as a result have multiple levels of spam detection software running on the address.

Moments later, I receive an email:

Dear ianbeck

We have found that your email is shared in tweets. We advise you to hide your email from spammers by sharing email address as an image or hide it behind a url.

Visit us at : [REDACTED] to find how you can do this.

Happy Twitting !!!
“2 million emails are sent every second. About 70% to 72% of them might be spam and viruses.”

(I’m a little sad that the web doesn’t let you see all the lovely extra spaces in the message, too. It is truly a work of negative-space-leveraging art.)

I was curious how you would classify this email, and Wikipedia provided a concise definition:

E-mail spam, also known as junk e-mail or unsolicited bulk e-mail (UBE), is a subset of spam that involves nearly identical messages sent to numerous recipients by e-mail

This message is unsolicited email. Based on the format of the email, it is apparent that they are sending this nearly identical message to numerous recipients.

So why would I trust a spammer to protect me from spammers?

Oh, right, I wouldn’t. Blocked and reported for spam.

The ways that people find to abuse Twitter never cease to amaze me.

Incidentally, I have just finished twitting the fools who sent this email. Had I posted to Twitter instead, I would be “tweeting”. Words matter, people. Even if you’re a sleazy spammer.

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