Friday, February 16, 2007

The Six Percent Solution

Did you know that 94 percent of all email is spam? Let's do a little math; 100 percent minus 94 percent... that leaves only 6 percent of this data stream as legitimate. Spam increased 147 percent in 2006, and caused a 334 percent increase in processing requirements for corporate email - accordingly to the article, some systems are simply melting down. What a waste.

Big companies are closing the door on this 'free speech' fast. Brian Livingston reports that 75 percent of Fortune 100 companies are now publishing lists of ip addresses that are legitimate to send email from their company. In addition, 45 percent are using DomainKey authentication technology to digitally sign their emails, and they are rapidly expecting their correspondents to do the same. So, if you are not using some authentication method, you message may go right in the virtual dustbin.

Many entities have tried the ole email tax to put an end to this nonsense. Michigan and Utah tried it. AOL and Yahoo proposed it, then AOL did it in January by launching a certified email program. Of course, the US Government forbids it, but it seems like you can get around them pretty easily these days; you don't tax the email, you charge for the certified email, you see.

I'm in agony here guys, you know that. As the son of the son of an immigrant, this six percent solution is unacceptable. Phil thinks, as do I, that from the cost perspective alone, running in-house messaging is absolutely obscene. George thinks it's not that bad, and of course there is always Google who is surely to get into this game. A lot of the naysayers think that third party hosters can't be trusted with something as sensitive as email. But let me ask you this - do you do your own banking in house? Because if you are trusting someone with your money, your emails seem like just a trifle.

Authentication, tax, third part hosting, the only thing I know is that as the costs to send these emails go up, the resources that can be allocated to sending them must go down. That's called efficiency. And that's why I think Google will be the email hoster for the world.

1 comment:

Mark Ontkush said...

Hi Steve,

I had to delete your post. Sounds like I struck a nerve, could you clean it up a little and be a bit more lucid.