Some buzz today about Boxbe -- a service that promises to forward unsolicited email only from those willing to pay a fee for your attention. I signed up to take a look, and was frankly horrified by what I found.
Boxbe is a front for another of these awful challenge/response setups. Look at the reply I got to a test message:
Subject: Held: testingSigh. In case you've not heard the mantra already:
The message you sent to firstname.lastname@example.org regarding "testing" is being held undelivered because he or she has not pre-approved your email address [redacted] for access.
To deliver your message, you can:
* Take a short test (a simple test by following the link below
* Pay a small fee (USD $0.15) which
Boxbe will share with the email@example.com. This is intended
for advertisers. To pay, click on the link below:
- Challenge/response causes spam (because spammers forge the sender)
- So if you use C/R, you're a spammer
- Filtering your spam is not my job
- If everyone used it, email wouldn't work!
Prediction: if Boxbe gets popular, spammers will start sending to it, which will cause backscatter complaints, which will cause blacklisting of Boxbe's servers.