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View Full Version : E-mail "Whitelist" in Europe


Janet Binkley
29 August 2005, 12:00 AM
I received a request written in German from someone apparently in the Rhein-Main area to put his e-mail address on my "Whitelist", as he had put my address on his so that he could receive "all" my e-mails. Can one of our users of Reunion explain a Whitelist?

Dennis J. Cunniff
29 August 2005, 04:50 AM
Can one of our users of Reunion explain a Whitelist?He wants you to add his e-mail address to your e-mail program's address book (or its equivalent) so that mail from him won't be blocked as spam. Adding it to your Address Book under OS X should get the job done.

Why "whitelist"? One way of dealing with unwanted e-mails is to put people who send it on a "blacklist", which is a word in common use for a list of people to be punished or boycotted. The word "whitelist" is by analogy: you put people on a "whitelist" to ensure they (or their mail) isn't boycotted, and gets through.

Similarly, many websites maintain both "whitelists" and "blacklists" of people or web addresses that are allowed to do, or are blocked from doing, certain things.

Steve W. Jackson
29 August 2005, 06:53 PM
He wants you to add his e-mail address to your e-mail program's address book (or its equivalent) so that mail from him won't be blocked as spam. Adding it to your Address Book under OS X should get the job done.

Why "whitelist"? One way of dealing with unwanted e-mails is to put people who send it on a "blacklist", which is a word in common use for a list of people to be punished or boycotted. The word "whitelist" is by analogy: you put people on a "whitelist" to ensure they (or their mail) isn't boycotted, and gets through.

Similarly, many websites maintain both "whitelists" and "blacklists" of people or web addresses that are allowed to do, or are blocked from doing, certain things.
This is a really good analogy, IMHO. To add to it, I switched from "blacklists", or filters in my email program aimed at known spam identifiers, to a whitelist approach some time ago. It enabled me to eliminate all my spam filters but one. I now have several filters for mailing lists that send mail to specific mailboxes, and one that simply says to accept mail from anyone in any of my several address lists. Everything else lands in my Trash mailbox. If I see something there that looks legit, I'll view it. If I reply to it, the address lands in a "history" address book and will not subsequently be filtered out as trash. It's saved me a lot of work in spam filtering in the year or so since I switched over.

= Steve =