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Re: [ietf-smtp] [Shutup] Proposed Charter for the "SMTP Headers Unhealthy To User Privacy" WG (fwd)

2015-12-11 12:24:40
On 12/11/2015 09:48 AM, Ted Lemon wrote:
Friday, Dec 11, 2015 9:40 AM Paul Smith wrote:
Unfortunately, the rest of us live in the real world...

As far as I know it's not possible to live in an unreal world.  But if your 
point is that most of us just have to accept garbage service, that's incorrect. 
  Mail service is widely available from competent providers.   There is no 
reason at all why anybody who is dissatisfied with the service they are getting 
from their service provider needs to stick with that provider.   Sure, it's 
nice that you're able to do your friend a favor by looking at the headers and 
telling them it's not an infected PC, but if you couldn't do that it would not 
_actually_ be a serious problem.   It would just be a different problem, with a 
different solution that wouldn't involve you.

By this measure, all the large free mail services are garbage because they simply cannot afford to provide the level of service you're implying - a single phone call puts them well into the negative income zone.

This also implies that you're introducing an economic/knowledge bias into the equation and an element of elitism (those who can afford). This is a really bad idea when we're talking about personal safety/privacy of people who are likely to be at the lower end of the income spectrum is it not?

Furthermore, if my comment about the wide availability of privacy protection systems (eg: email anonymizers, tor etc) wasn't good enough, why is "just switch to a better provider" (_if_ you know it's the right choice and can afford it) acceptable?

The reality is that very few providers are capable or willing to provide the level of service you postulate, paid for or not, for end-users. Doesn't matter what size they are.

In the real world most providers make it hard to make contact with a human, and at best you get access to a level 1 support person who has a script and is completely lost if you diverge off it. There is no substitute for a level 3 or 4 or 5 who has a bit more personal interest in your success.

I don't see that changing any time soon, nor is it anything the IETF can do anything about.

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