The Robservatory

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Why context matters

I receive a lot of junk mail, most of which is captured by various levels of filters. But sometimes, some messages make it through the traps, such as this one which came in last night:

I would like to buy advertising on your web page:

The ad would be for an airport parking web site and consist of a couple of lines of text with links to the parking site. I can pay $35 for the ad via PayPal, or send you a check. Would you be interested?

Yes, that's right -- this person would love to run an advert for his airport parking lot website right in the middle of our forum thread titled "Stranded at the Airport," which opens this way:

I am having no luck setting up my original Airport and WaveLAN silver card on my W.Steet 266. I am using the drivers I got with the card on the OWC site...

It seems this particular spambot's context parser is incredibly basic (if (site or post) contains word 'airport,' then send advert request message). But really, I'm not complainaing about the parser at all: it gave me a little chuckle before I pressed the Junk button!


  1. I think it might also have used the word "driver" as a part of the filter. After all, the word "driver" in relation to an airport is more likely to be a complaint about other drivers causing such horrible traffic and making parking terrible than a complaint about getting wireless networking set up.

    At least, so far...

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