Sometimes we can get too close to something. So close, in fact, that we take comments the wrong way so that they become insults that they were never intended to be.
A couple of years ago, a member of the postmaster staff at a large, North American ISP said to a group of ESP people: “On my list of 10 things to do today, you are number 11.”
Neil Schwartzman recalled that quote in a blog post made to Laura’s and Al’s blogs on the topic of Josh Baer’s idea of allowing email to expire.
In this week’s Magill Report, Ken Magill took issue with that quote.
“News flash for Mr. ISP man: The sole reason you have a job is because of marketing and sales. No marketing and sales, no work. Got it?”
Well, I was there when that statement was made, and I have to say that Neil keeps it in context. Just before recalling that statement, Neil said: “Marketing email accounts for a reported 10% of the legitimate email load (in other words, everything a typical user gets that isn’t spam, rejected at the router, or by other filtering means).”
In context, the ISP representative said that his top 10 list of things to do dealt with things like:
Blocking mail from botnets
Blocking users whose computers have become part of a botnet
Trying to keep out mail from spammers in ___________.
Dealing with security issues that would pop-up around their mail servers.
And so on. I’m not sure that he actually made it all the way to ten items, but the context was clear: Out of all of the things that can go wrong and require immediate remediation, email from ESPs and their marketing clients rates pretty far down that list. It was, in short, a list of The Things That Can Go Very Badly Wrong Today.
So, in that context, let me say that being number 11 on that list of 10 things is a pretty nice place to be. And I would hope that Ken would agree.