dba Whole Wellness Club™
(aka Dr. Miller's Holy Tea Club™)
Are 0% Tolerance for Spam companies!
What is SPAM?
A Very Clear Explanation
What is spam? It seems as if there is a lot of it going around, but
consumers and businesses are often confused about what spam really
ISPs and web hosting companies ultimately bear the burden
of receiving these unsolicited mail complaints, and differentiating
between what is, and is not spam.
Often providers terminate
websites or dial up access based on just one complaint. Providers
must strictly enforce their terms, or face action by their own
upstream providers for servicing reported spam
Here is a universal definition of what spam actually
Spam is ANY unsolicited or unwanted message that arrives
via email. Period. (Including 'Ask Permission
the mail was requested, and this request can be produced by the
sender, then all follow up messages that are sent must contain ALL
of the following when they arrive:
1. Valid "from"
address. This means the from address must be a working domain
name that someone can write directly to should they want to. If the
address is valid when the message is sent and is then shut down
after the mail is sent, it is still considered an invalid "from"
2. Valid "reply to" address. This is slightly
different to the "from" address, it is the address mail goes to if
someone clicks reply on the email. It may be the same as the "from"
if you choose.
3. Valid sender information, including
the name of the company or individual that sent the message, a valid
phone number, and a physical postal address where written
correspondence can be sent if needed.
4. Valid remove
processes must be in place to instantly remove any individual
from future mailings upon request. A real-time remove link or
standard reply with "remove" in the subject line are acceptable if
they work every time, without exception.
If all of these
factors apply, and the mail is sent with the prior permission
from the recipient, then the mail being sent is not considered
So, what if one of these factors is slightly different?
Like what if it is a one-time mailing so there is no need to have a
remove, as some mail will claim?
This is not acceptable
because there is no valid remove and there is no permission granted
from the recipient.
How about targeted lists, or opt-in
lists purchased from companies in the same
Mail sent to these types of lists is also
considered spam, because the names on the lists did not give you
permission to mail to them, even in the rare case that they did give
this permission to someone else.
How about if you actually
visit a sales prospect's web site and write to them individually,
not in a mass mail and say, "I visited your website at
www.yoursite.com and noticed you were in need of my
This is also considered spam, even if the from,
reply to, and other information are valid including a remove link.
This is still spam because it is not solicited. If the mail, or
sales literature was not requested, it is spam mail, no matter
Now that the real rules of spamming are established
here, you may be asking, how can I run a legitimate newsletter,
weekly specials sheet, or ad to my prospect list? How can I send out
mail and know that it is not going to be reported as
Simply put, you cannot prevent reports. No matter
how closely you follow the rules as a sender, there is the chance
that a user will report the mail as spam.
avoid fallout for these types of complaints, be sure to have your
own abuse network and procedures in place. Make sure
firstname.lastname@example.org is working, and that it goes right to
someone important in your organization.
Once an abuse
report is received, you can be certain that your host, internet
provider and others have also received the same abuse complaint. You
should respond to the complaint as a remove request
Reply to the letter and include all
addresses that also received the original complaint. Address the
individual by their name, and provide a copy of the original
subscription request with date and other supporting
Tell the user and other abuse addresses
that you have processed the remove, the letter is not spam and was
indeed requested. Be as brief as possible and be sure to reference
the URL where you post your terms of service and the URL where the
user agreed to receive your mail.
Be sure this letter arrives
at all of the addresses listed in the original complaint
immediately. Even a one-hour delay may be too long, because some
providers will shut down sites for spamming as soon as a complaint
You will want to be sure that once your host, or
ISP starts to read the original complaint, that there is an
accompanying letter from you with a subscription authentication and
removal confirmation. This way, your host or ISP can clearly see
that the mail is not spam, and complies with their terms of
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