Greetings from Brussels

Posted by George Bilbrey 

George Bilbrey
By George Bilbrey

Several times a year the anti-spam community gets together for the general meetings of the Messaging Anti Abuse Working Group (MAAWG). It may be an outrageously bad acronym, but it’s a great place to hear what the largest ISPs and other spam-fighters are thinking about spam and how to fight it. This summer the meeting is in Brussels. A few themes and factoids that might be interesting to marketers were clear during the conversations and presentations. These include:

— Many of the ISPs that have yet to use reputation based filtering are heading in that direction.
— There has been much less conversation about the mechanics of different authentication techniques than in past conferences. However, it doesn’t seem that the rate of uptake of authentication is accelerating. Having said that, it still makes sense to use authentication. Some larger receivers were hinting that authentication will actually be used as a positive weight in determining whether a message is spam.
— More feedback loops are in the offing. Yahoo has reiterated that they will be releasing a feedback loop. The timing is TBD. Other ISPs seem positive on the concept of releasing feedback loops than in the past. (A feedback loop is when ISPs report back the actions of recipients to the senders of email.)
— Based on a few of the presentations and comments made by spam filtering companies I am more convinced than ever that staying on a consistent IP address (not hopping from IP to IP) is important to continued high delivery rates.

More to come as the meeting continues.

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About George Bilbrey

George Bilbrey is the founder of the industry’s first deliverability service provider, Assurance Systems, which merged with Return Path in 2003. He is a recognized expert on the subjects of email reputation and deliverability and is active in many industry organizations, including the Messaging Anti-Abuse Working Group (MAAWG) and the Online Trust Alliance (OTA). In his role as president of Return Path George is the driving force behind the ongoing innovation of our products and services. Prior to Return Path, George served as Director of Product Management at and as a partner in the telecommunications group at Mercer Management Consulting. He holds a B.A. in economics from Duke University, and an MBA from the Kenan-Flagler School of Business, University of North Carolina.

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