We love our members. I have proof.

We received this in our inbox a bit ago. Somehow it made it past the spam filter, and we just couldn’t turn it away. It’s not “real” spam since they do appear to be a legitimate company, for some minimal definition of “legitimate.” But it absolutely was unsolicited commercial email, and we really would rather not have received it at our operational support address.

From: sales@(sillyname).com
To: support@NearlyFreeSpeech.NET
Subject: Solutions to all your Hosting Problems Under One Roof


We (sillynameremoved).com are in search of potential clients who need quality support of any kind for their hosting / online internet business, whether it has to be dealt with sales, support online chat etc.

[scary immediately: In search of potential clients…like what, search and destroy?]

We are in tech support for last two years. We can provide you with our technical support and also look after your sales and technical aspects at very low costing. Our techs are expertise in the Linux and windows platforms. [Too bad we don’t use either one!] We work 24×7 which makes 365 days online service for your customers.

We are privately held technical support provider [Read: nobody would buy us in a million years.] offering a quality performance for Web Hosting Company or other businesses. We work closely with our clients in the development of long-term support solution strategies that are practical, sustainable and clearly deliver a return on investment. We guarantee 100% customer satisfaction .and quality service and are available for our dear customer round the clock anytime they need it.

Our strengths lie in:

Our support technicians who are trained to Red hat and Microsoft Windows certified level who can give you quality flawless service. Our competitively priced and quality assured support solutions which suits and fits the best according to your needs. Our customer service, which is second to none [Read as: our customer service is worse than nothing!], giving our clients the peace of mind they need to be able to focus on developing their technology to add strategic value to their business. We believe in Fast Service, Availability, and Response for our clients. We cover sales, tech and billing support. We are also proficient in website moves from server to server.

What we would like to propose you is that, if you are in search of any such aspect please do let us know.. [Read as: I didn’t do any sales research or lead qualification, would you do it for me?] It would be a pleasure for us also for working with you as well..

Our Support personnel are well experienced with:

Direct Admin
Hosting Controller
Etrinix Command Matrix

Common Web Server Issues:

httpd.conf problems
.htaccess errors
Password protection issues
Site oriented IP blocking issues
Mime types
Apache Handler problems
URL blocking and redirection issues
Secure Cert problems

Common system administration issues that will be handled for you:

Apache/IIS Web Server Operation and Configuration
Blocked Service Handling
Web Statistics Configuration

Log File Analysis
Security Management
Anti-trojan Protection
Firewall Configuration and Management
Kernel Patching and Upgrades
Spam Protection
Kernel Upgrades [Which is not the same as Kernel Patching and Upgrades!]

We are proficient in

Windows 2000
Windows 2003 Server

Our technicians can effectively handle issues regarding the following mail servers/issues: [But not postfix, which it would have taken us several seconds to discover is what you use.]

SMTP issues
POP issues
POP-before-SMTP and relay denied issues
Mailing lists
Client Setup
POP authorization
Anti-spam measures
Email filter issues with Procmail and .forward

Also if you can let us know when you will be available we could have a live chat conversation regarding the same… [How about never? Does never work for you?]

You can add us in your MSN (sillynameremoved)@hotmail.com , (sillynameremoved)@yahoo.com at yahoo messenger or (sillynameremoved) on Aim. [Thanks for the warning!] Also you can reply this email with any questions at sales@(sillynameremoved).com.


(Name Removed),
Sales Operation Head,

Email: sales@(sillynameremoved).com

Then, after all that, there’s the questionable wisdom of sending this directly to the department you’re hoping to replace.

(Some commentary contributed by Kirsten. Despite the entertaining grammar and word usage issues in this message, we refrained from calling them out because we do respect people who speak more than one langauge. Even so, we speak and provide support in fluent English, and this quality of translation only demonstrates how they prioritize that proficiency.)

Our industrious intern Thomas observes: “Look at their page. ‘Live chat Offline’ 24/7? Guess not… :-b”

Don’t worry! We’d never do anything like what’s proposed in this dreadful message. (And if the sender had cared enough to do even basic research about us, that would have been readily apparent.) So we didn’t do anything about it but point and laugh. We care about our members too much to subject them to “support” like this.


RSS feed for comments on this post.

  1. Why am I not surprised that they also offer SEO services?

    Thanks for being consistently awesome, NFSN. I can assure you the love is reciprocated :p

    Comment by ADB — March 20, 2007 #

  2. As much as I love your company I think this bullying was uncalled for. Spam is just spam and bragging of being head and shoulders above some desperate offshore company is still aiming too low. Sorry guys, didn’t like this one.

    Comment by Sergey — March 20, 2007 #

  3. Hey Sergey! I do completely understand your point of view.

    If I have to disagree with you anywhere, it’s whether their obvious desperation in any way justifies spamming. It does not. And at a company like ours, reviling spam and vilifying spammers is part of the job.

    Even so, we probably could have let it go, as we do with the hundreds of other spam messages we receive every day. What got this one special treatment was the cheeky, towering irony of spamming about their qualifications to run email servers. That’s just a little too much.

    As far as their offshore status, that’s not really a factor to me. This is the Internet; we’re a global company with customers, contractors and vendors all over the world and we would not have it any other way.

    Still, I hate letting our members down and I apologize if the tongue-in-cheek nature of this post came across to you (or anyone else) as anything other than a reminder of three things:

    1) We really, really hate spam.

    2) We really, really love our members.

    3) We are committed to providing the highest quality support.

    Comment by jdw — March 20, 2007 #

  4. Related reading: http://spamusement.com/

    It consists of cartoons drawn from the strange subject lines found in real spams.

    — Doug

    Comment by Douglas Muth — March 20, 2007 #

  5. That’s true, I haven’t seen better support anywhere.

    Comment by Sergey — March 21, 2007 #

  6. Back in 2000 I worked for a Web-Hosting company that was pretty small. One day will readng the mail in one of the support emails for our company I found a smiliar email. It was from a russian webmaster trying to sell us his services for $14 an hour, at the time our web-design people and my self included where making slightly less then that. The email was pass around at work and we all laughed. It was the first email I saved in to a folder of somewhat similar emails that just where to good to just throw away. Good Times…

    Comment by nordstar — March 30, 2007 #

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