Get Bonded or Get Out?

It looks like Microsoft is going to make it easy for the Big guys to get through their Spam Filter, but if you send more then one or two emails to them at a time and not enough that you can afford their "bonded certification program," you may be in for a lock-out of MSN/Hotmail.

Last week I talked about Microsofts new deal with IronPort to create a quasi "charge for email" certification program.

At the time that I wrote that, I did not know what the details where, but thanks to many of you out there who sent me articles and links to IronPorts certification URL, I now have some stats.

For anyone sending less then 500k emails a month (which is probably most of us) it will cost:

$375 just for the application fee
$500 annual license fee (for IronPorts administration)
$500 bond (that will be dinged $20 every time you do not comply)
--------for a total of

And here is the kicker!

Microsoft's Ryan Hamlin, general manager of their Anti-Spam Tchnology and Strategy group announced Tuseday, May 18, that the release of SmartScreen (the program that will cost senders in *computing* time) date is not extablished but says. "We're actually putting it in our products, it's no longer a research project, its something we're going to ship."

What is SmartScreen exactly?

It is a program that they announced last fall describing the scheme in which a swerver receiving e-mail would respond to the sender, asking it to perform a small task before accepting the e-mail. For a normal user, this computational overhead would be too small to be a bother. For a large-scale sender, it would be impractical.

So, what are the choices of the small business owner with a small to medium size list?

1) stop accepting MSN/Hotmail opt-ins?
2) accept and then encourage customers to switch ISPs?
3) get bonded?
4) ignore and see what happens?

Even if you can shell out $1,375 to get bonded so you can send to MSN/HOTMAIL, will you be able to shell out another for AOL, Earthlink, Yahoo, NetZero and whoever else starts up a bonded program.

I don't know about you, but that is way to steep for me!
The only way I will be able to continue to send out my newsletter is if my shopping cart or autoresponder services get bonded. And, depending on the increase of the pricing structure, it could knock the GREAT little guys off the map.

I vote for #1.

Let's stop accepting MSN/HOTMAIL emails and show Microsoft, they can rule the big guys but with any luck and stamina, us grassrooters, will survive!

Like always, I thank you for listening!
Dori :)

© Sonic-Rocket Marketing, 2003

Spam Check