I just received spam advertising a book about fascism. It’s not your typical spam — it just looks like the introduction to a book, placed in email and sent — unsolicited of course — to random people around the net. It was fairly well written and not obfuscated, so it didn’t trigger much in the way of spam filters. (The great irony is that by misspelling and breaking up words to get past filters, spammers are making it easier for people to spot, making themselves look horribly unprofessional — would you really trust the product from someone selling “druuugs?” — and creating new, definite spam signs. When you see 10 drug names all misspelled with strange symbols, you know it’s either a spammer or a 14-year-old IRC junkie trying to be L337.)
They even made the effort to include a full plain-text equivalent alongside the HTML version, for the benefit of people who don’t trust or can’t read HTML mail.
And that brings me to the funny part, this statement from the plain-text version:
If your e-mail software does not support html, please click here.
Two problems: aside from violating W3C QA guidelines on link text, it makes no sense, because there’s nothing to click on!
They tried. They really tried. But they forgot to ask whether I actually wanted to be on their mailing list. (Oh, and the “click here” thing was funny.)