Internet Providers


Can't live with them, can't live without them!

In the old days a relative might never be seen or heard of again once he or she had left the house. In some cultures this still is the case. When I left my parents house to go to university, a telephone call once in a while kept us at ease. I used to talk to my grandma a lot, usually just one call costing 10-15 quid. These days our monthly phone bill including broadband and all that stuff has gone down to 1/10 of that of the old days - what is very nice - however, we have become entirely dependant on this electronic means of communication. A very important one of which is e-mail.

We get told that we are living in an age of high technology; and everything is so shared; and networking and staying it touch and being available without being nagged supposedly is the easiest thing, due to all those new technologies.

Is High-Tech actually Low-Tech?

Well, I had the irksome pleasure to look a bit behind the scenes recently and found that high-tech is rather low-tech and that a lot of the stuff is invented to make some rich more rich and not for the benefit of the consumer - well, as if I wouldn't have been able to guess that before!

Two big players in the internet business who helped making the internet as big as it is by giving away free email accounts and adding some gadgets around it to hook us even more, can't handle the upcoming problems anymore and instead of admitting to it and telling us about their measures, they sneakily provide the worst service ever without us realising it.

How to 'See' something that is 'NOT' there!

If you go to a restaurant and you don't get your food in time: You call this bad service and you don't go there anymore. This NOT happening of something is clearly visible and you can take appropriate action.

If they say they are using fresh ingredients and they don't: You may not realise it and it may need a long time until they are found out. The NOT happening of something is hidden, and when we find out we feel cheated.

This is happening at the moment with Yahoo and AOL. On their menu they have free email accounts - however, there is no guarantee that you will get the e-mails people are sending you. Well, you will get emails from other Yahoo users. A cheating restaurant owner wouldn't feed the crap for the guests to his family, would he?

But from all the others - you may get them or you may not! And the NOT happening of something is hidden away.

We all have people with whom we are not in touch that closely and where the one or the other email per year will have to do. That is OK, as in the old days we may have lost those from our lives entirely. It's just ... if they don't get your e-mail and thus not being able to respond ... and you in never getting a response might be thinking: Arrogant bitch! ... you didn't just lose a person from your life: You lost a person and you are holding a grudge.

A loss which in the past would have been accepted and mutually celebrated with some tears and good wishes for the future, these days can turn into something nasty and you might not want to remember this person for the good times anymore - for no good reason as it might turn out.

The impact on Incredible Ladies

For me this matter of not being able to stay in contact had a very direct impact on my life:

I was 'THIS CLOSE' to packing in Incredible Ladies!

I bought my own domain for Incredible Ladies. That is why my email ends on Thus I paid for something that in the end would horribly backfire.

Because half the world is using free Yahoo and AOL accounts about half of my Incredible Ladies I'm in touch with do so as well.

And then I got sort of blacklisted. Yahoo and AOL decided that I am a likely spammer. I'm not from their domain, I'm using email lists. ...well, and the name Incredible Ladies might not help either.

Something fishy's going on!

Some of the problem - definitely not the majority of it - may lay in a nice feature that is displayed with incoming e-mails. If you for example would find that an email is spam, then you would click a little icon and the unwanted mail would vanish into the 'spam/bulk or however it is named' folder.

If you then were used to using the mouse rather than key board you may get used to clicking the same button do delete an email you've just read and of which you think you don't need anymore.

However, using the 'spam button' would let your provider know that you don't like that sender. And your provider would be of service and the next time throw these emails into the spam/bulk folder straight away.

If you wouldn't be checking your spam folder, you would never find them. And if you did, it would not be enough to just drag and drop them back into the Inbox... you actively would have to de-spam them by clicking 'this is no spam'.

This problem of being marked as a spammer might then radiate back to the senders provider who apparently allows a spammer to use it's systems. Then provider gets blacklisted and the emails are not delivered at all. If lucky the sender would get a warning that the email couldn't be delivered, but sometimes emails just die somewhere in the internet. And you as Yahoo user? You wouldn't have a clue that someone wanted to contact you!

Well this is a very simple way of putting it - but it can explain some of the things that are happening.

However, the scenario depicted above doesn't explain the whole picture. I don't have problems with people using gmail for instance and one can assume that if Yahoo users click the spam button by mistake, then gmail user would do so as well. So Yahoo and AOL must be handling things very differently. And I have examples of Ladies who found my mails in the spam and who actively de-spammed me and still... the next mail goes straight back in. Nevertheless, it doesn't hurt to use the spam-function correctly, does it?

Someone cut my cable...

Do you know these movies where the lonely damsel is in distress, she desperately tries to get to the phone to call for help and by the time she reaches it you see a dark hand with a glove cutting through the wire.... and the next thing you hear is a scream!

Well that's a bit how I feel!

How am I supposed to promote a website without email? How am I to organise events when I can't invite people or announce details?

On Sunday two weeks ago I called my closest friends. Don't get me wrong: I love talking to them. But I was on the phone for about 5 hours. I love my friends dearly, but on that Sunday I was really knackered afterwards. And I only had reached some of them, and I hadn't written a word for the website, and I couldn't think straight anymore to be able to do so.

During the next two weeks I had more notifications of bounced emails in my inbox than responses from my Ladies and that's when it became clear that half my network had been broken away due to this crap! With the cappuccino machine breaking down at the same time -

I'm telling you: That felt pretty much like rock bottom!

Since then I'm using two other email accounts, copying and pasting back and forth between them and slowly losing track who got which message, and who not. So I deeply apologise to everybody who got emails more than once. IL turned into a big mess. And my aim of developing IL into a brand is slipping away like oil on water.

Thank God - I'm not alone in this

If you are interested to learn more about this matter, there are a few links below which explain that this is an issue going on since years and not only affecting me alone. And these articles show that there are at least some things that can be done to work around this. Won't help against the core of the problem, but might help to keep my Ladies together.

So I decided for now not to wrap it up, and to be persistent in my efforts.

Incredible Ladies - Forever!

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Copyright 2007
Author: Rika