My institute’s main website displays the full email address of every single person in the building. As a result, our email filters are fighting a losing battle against an endless barrage of spam: mostly advertisements for certain classes of prescription drugs, and PIN phishing messages purportedly from banks.
This was an interesting exception: (click the image, then “All sizes” for a clearer view: sorry, any other sizes get all distorted when I insert them using either MT4 or Flickr).
I’m not sure whether we were a random victim, or targeted specifically as a cancer research institute, but either way I don’t think many of my colleagues will be making a purchase from these people.
I’ve set up my department’s new website differently; email addresses are displayed as “username [at] domain [dot] ca”. This approach does eliminate spam from the people who compile their mailing lists using automated web mining tools, but unfortunately it doesn’t eliminate other email irritants. I’m listed as the contact person for the website in general, and for certain job postings (we use different contact people on different adverts so we can get a sense of how people are finding us). This means that I attract more than my fair share of the idiocy.
Our email user name structure is first initial followed by surname, no dots, so I get lots of emails addressed to “Dear Cennis” (hint to job seekers: this is not the best way to highlight your “excellent eye for detail”, or your research skills in general for that matter). But the exchange below was much more original, and definitely the most entertaining spam so far:
No reply yet. I’ll keep you posted.
Seriously though, this is Marketing 101. Google brings up 24,000,000 hits for tuna, another 81,800,000 for recipe, and 121,000 for “tuna recipe”. And you’re targetting the cancer research websites?!
Ah well, at least it amused my colleagues.
- bad people
- blog buddies
- blog roll
- book review
- current affairs
- embarrassing fan girl
- English language
- food glorious food
- furry friends
- grant wrangling
- hockey pool
- original research
- Primate Party