Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Adversarial Information Retrieval

Apparently that is the technical term for spam on the Web (as opposed to Unsolicited Commercial Email, the term for email spam). Matt Cutts alerts us to the Third International Workshop on Adversarial Information Retrieval on the Web. It’s nice to know the technical people are on top of this. The problem is that spam is not a technical problem and is not susceptible to a technical solution.

Spam is a credit problem. Without merchant accounts it would not be possible for spammers to operate. The financial services industry has completely failed to do their part in the fight against spam. As I have suggested before, were credit card providers merely to cancel the merchant accounts of only the most notorious spammers we could bring this down to manageable proportions.

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