Thursday, August 28, 2008

An Apology!

In the chaos of moving house and unpacking boxes, I haven't been able to chase up replies to emails sent to Council officers on various ward issues where I didn't get a reply, so there are a few people who have been waiting for too long for me to get back to them with a response or action plan - I can only apologise.

It appears that there is a problem with the way the City Council's email systems have been handling my emails, as a result recent mails have found their way into a Spam trap at the Council, and as a result they haven't been received or answered by the relevant people.

For the technical minded, the problem appears to be that my email signature includes a link to this blog. For reasons which were a bit unclear, a little while ago the anti-spam blacklists included the whole domain, so any emails including a link to a blogspot blog were at risk of being marked as spam. I think this problem has now been fixed, but the Council's Spam checkers are still blocking such emails.

This is potentially a very serious problem if it results in emails from members of the public being ignored by the Council. If there is anyone more clued up than me on spam filtering techniques reading, I'd be interested to know:

Is it reasonable for a spam filter to mark as spam any email that includes a web address?

The Council notifies users about potential spam emails not delivered with a summary list of from addresses and subject lines - this clearly isn't resulting in real emails being identified - does this policy sound reasonable or what more can be done to avoid genuine emails being mislaid?

Also, please let me know if you have sent emails to the City Council that don't appear to have had any response...

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