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Is AOL Spam Reporting Banning Your Site?

By Martin Lemieux
Posted Saturday, September 4, 2004

As I read the awful truth of the nature of aol's new spam reporting from their 9.0 version, I left with a knot within my stomach. Have they gone too far?

Last week I received a message from my hosting company notifying me that AOL has just banned them completely from ever sending aol members any e-mail messages. Sadly my hosting company told me that it was because of my newsletter.

Not only were they banned but in order to lift the ban they either had to; a) Prove that my company does not indulge in bulk mailing or b) Delete my account entirely!

If you're thinking ouch, you are so right!

So I went through my e-mail list and realized that only one, I repeat, there was only ONE e-mail account found from aol!

Here's the sad truth, one person, one voice hit their "Spam Report" button to aol because they received a message from my company and presto, aol set's a ban on all the servers assigned to my hosting provider.

Is this fair?

I mean do we really hate spam so much as to having the ability to hurt people's future? The thing is it wasn't even spam!!!

Here's another sad reality, my newsletter has a "double opt in". So in other words, not only do you need to submit your information but you also have to go back and confirm your e-mail address after you submitted it to my company.

Better To Be Safe Than Sorry:
Because of recent events, my newsletter NO LONGER accepts any submissions from people using AOL E-mail Accounts. I suggest you implement the same strategy. Is it really worth it to you to go so far as to having your web site banned?

Power To The People:
I really feel we should all have a word in this matter and protect our rights to provide e-mail information to people who ask for it and we shouldn't be subject to a ban from one voice, one mailing. AOL has given too much power to individuals.

What If Your Competition Has AOL?
What is stopping your competition from buying aol and opting into your newsletter just for the sheer opportunity to report your company as spam!

About the Author
A Concerned Marketer:
Martin Lemieux
Founder and President of Smartads.

( & ( Here to provide you with effective web design & web advertising services.

To read more of Martin's articles and get these weekly tips, Sign up here: (


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