After mentioning Sphinn in a recent newsletter as a great place to keep up with the latest buzz in search, I was surprised when AWeber sent me a report that several ISPs were blocking my newsletter based on the content.
After doing a little research I discovered that SURBL (a database which feeds several tools including SpamAssassin) has Sphinn.com on a list of "spamvertised" domains. Apparently, after receiving enough SpamCop complaints about emails that happen to contain a domain name in the content, SURBL decides that any message mentioning that domain must be spam.
I hate these SURBL guys. I really do. They haven’t done a damn thing to keep me from getting a ton of spam every day, but they block legitimate emails without any investigation or notification. If you use SpamAssassin, I recommend configuring it to ignore this worthless blacklist, better yet, uninstall it and filter your emails at the client. It works better.
I "went Mac" a few weeks ago, and the amount of spam I have to manually delete is down to only a few a day. I get a false positive every few days on the Apple Mail client… which has been pretty much flawless after a couple weeks training for the Junk Mail filter.
Blacklists don’t work, and bad guys can exploit them to hurt the good guys, like Danny Sullivan & Sphinn.