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Microsoft Patents Software Linux

Microsoft, Sue Me First 349

Posted by kdawson
from the no-meee dept.
corigo writes "Supporters of free and open source solutions have thrown down the gauntlet at Microsoft's feet. Christian Einfeldt of Digital Tipping Point says 'Sue Me First,' and he's not alone. More and more people are signing up and challenging Microsoft to put their lawyers where their mouth is. The open source community is far from running scared. Will Microsoft step up to the plate, or are they just continuing a scare campaign with no real ability to leverage the patents they claim open source is infringing?"
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Microsoft, Sue Me First

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  • ...hmm (Score:5, Funny)

    by Lehk228 (705449) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:35PM (#19215041) Journal
    Microsoft: O.K.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:35PM (#19215047)
    as an open source software user, i back christian einfeldt completely.

    sue him first, pls.

    fp btw!
  • by instagib (879544) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:37PM (#19215059)
    Microsoft sues you! Oh wait ...
  • by Infonaut (96956) <infonaut@gmail.com> on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:38PM (#19215069) Homepage Journal

    A: Will Microsoft step up to the plate...

    B: or are they just continuing a scare campaign with no real ability to leverage the patents they claim open source is infringing?

    I'll take B for all the money in the world, Bob.

    • by DoofusOfDeath (636671) on Monday May 21, 2007 @08:00PM (#19215309)

      I'll take B for all the money in the world, Bob.

      ARE YOU CRAZY??? MS lawyers I can handle, but don't tempt them to bring out Bob.

    • by glwtta (532858)
      or are they just continuing a scare campaign with no real ability to leverage the patents they claim open source is infringing?

      I see no reason to think they don't have (legally) valid patents that open software infringes, or that they wouldn't be able to defend them in court.
  • by Palmyst (1065142) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:39PM (#19215091)
    I remember stories about McDonalds and Disney taking aggressive action to defend their exclusive rights even against small-time infringers with the justification that refraining to sue could have been construed as abandoning their trademark. So, if microsoft does not sue these people, would it be tantamount to abandoning their right to sue later, or is it all just a bunch of meaningless hot air?
    • by Slow Smurf (839532) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:42PM (#19215107)
      Trademark != Patent != Copyright.
    • It's fud vs bca (bravery, certainty and assurance). This is about bed patents rather than good trademarks, so you're just a little off base here. These guys are essentially talking big in the hopes that their big brother (FSF) will step in and cover the checks their asses can't cash. It's kinda childish, but Microsoft has that effect on otherwise normal people.
      • This is about bed patents rather than ...

        sorry, should be "BAD patents". As far as I know none of them are in the bedding industry.

    • by DragonWriter (970822) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:47PM (#19215155)

      I remember stories about McDonalds and Disney taking aggressive action to defend their exclusive rights even against small-time infringers with the justification that refraining to sue could have been construed as abandoning their trademark. So, if microsoft does not sue these people, would it be tantamount to abandoning their right to sue later, or is it all just a bunch of meaningless hot air?


      IANAL, and you shouldn't rely on this as legal advice, YMMV, etc.:

      It might affect their ability to sue the particular people for reasons unrelated to abandonment (statutes of limitations, laches, and various estoppel theories), especially if it can be shown that Microsoft knew about the particular facts that it would allege are violations by the particular users early on and didn't act.

      It probably won't affect their ability to sue other people, though.

      But trademarks are very different from copyrights, and there is nothing in copyright similar to abandoning a trademark. Trademarks are protected based largely on use, copyrights are not.

      • by killjoe (766577)
        When it comes to patents Ms has an obligation to inform the infringer and give them a chance to either license or work around the problem. They have to duty to try and minimize damage to them.
    • Patents don't have to be enforced vigorously to be lost. In fact, the ActiveX interactive patent holder has gone on record as saying he will not pursue cases against Mozilla or Opera, only Microsoft.

      Copyright is, more or less, the same.

      Trademarks, however, are simply a word or two that is up to the company to promote. There's plenty of cases were trademarks have "expired" into the public lexicon, like escalator.
    • by BillGatesLoveChild (1046184) on Monday May 21, 2007 @10:28PM (#19216425) Journal
      Mickey Mouse as a trademark has expired. He's now in the public domain.

      No wait... Disney called in a favor from their brown-paper-bag-shills at Congress, who promptly introduced this legislation which kept Mickey from entering the public domain. AFAIAC Disney used Congress to steal it. No wonder Disney grew old and stale: They have no incentive to come up with anything new. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sonny_Bono_Copyright_ Term_Extension_Act [wikipedia.org] The "Copyright Extension Act" is unofficially known as the "Mickey Mouse Act". How is that for 'corporate sponsorship' gone mad?

      Who were the Congressional Shills? Despite the name it wasn't Congressman Sonny Bono, but I can't tell you who did it. This is what sucks about Congress. We get nasty bills passed that take away our rights, but Congressmen are shy to stick their name on it. So while grumbling about this, the DMCA, the Parrot Act, you could be voting for a shill who sponsored it.

      How about someone do a web site showing who is a shill and who isn't. Wikipedia doesn't carry this sort of info.
  • by jd (1658) <imipak&yahoo,com> on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:43PM (#19215119) Homepage Journal
    They're getting one hell of a cartload of free publicity, just after the release of their new OS, and projects like the One Laptop Per Child (which runs Linux but does not run Windows) are dependent for survival on orders that have not yet been placed. Intel's legally-questionable pressure on OLPC at the same time as this FUD may be part of a cooperative effort to destroy serious competition in new markets. It wouldn't be the first Wintel effort to crush rivals with anti-competitive actions, if that is what it is.

    (I'm looking at OLTP, because that's a worldwide non-Microsoft venture that could seriously dent Microsoft revenue in growing markets and because it's the biggest event due any time soon. Microsoft's FUD is generally not random but very purposeful and has a specific goal in mind. There simply isn't another goal on a comparable scale on any kind of near-term timeframe.)

    There are a few other avenues that Linux could be doing well in, but Microsoft is growing faster in the server market despite inferior performance, reliability or security, and that's the only other area Linux and Microsoft have any serious rivalry at this time. Linux could be doing well on the desktop, but not while it is playing catch-up. It would have to invent a whole new metaphor before it could seriously threaten Microsoft in the home market.

  • by Opportunist (166417) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:44PM (#19215123)
    Is there actually a legal way to tell them to "put up or shut up"?
    • by DragonWriter (970822) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:57PM (#19215277)

      Is there actually a legal way to tell them to "put up or shut up"?


      Sort of: someone who would be guilty of infringement if the patent claims Microsoft is asserting were true and has reasonable apprehension of a lawsuit could themselves bring suit for declaratory judgement.

      It also may be possible that a suit could be brought for defamation by someone adversely affected by the claims; that would be a harder case to advance, but carries the possibility of actual damages.
  • Do not want! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by DuranDuran (252246) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:45PM (#19215129)
    Microsoft doesn't want to step up the plate - they don't want to solidify their claims. They want to create in the midns of existing and potential Microsoft products that Linux and assorted alternatives are too risky to switch towards. Patents this week, usability next week, compatability the week after. This is not a game about patents, this is a game of unobservable quality and obfuscating the quality determination process. "What if there really are problems with Linux? Maybe it isn't the good solution I've heard it is? Best to stick with Microsoft, the lemon/devil I know".

    This may sound like a troll, but it really is not: in my opinion, Linux enthusiasts crying, "sue me first!" creates in the mind of traditional business people the idea that such enthusiasts are risk-seeking. Not everyone wants to be associated with a risk-seeker.
    • Re:Do not want! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Volante3192 (953645) on Monday May 21, 2007 @08:06PM (#19215381)
      This may sound like a troll, but it really is not: in my opinion, Linux enthusiasts crying, "sue me first!" creates in the mind of traditional business people the idea that such enthusiasts are risk-seeking. Not everyone wants to be associated with a risk-seeker.

      On the other hand, if Linux just sat back and let Microsoft dish out the patent threats, companies might not want to be associated with the threat of lawsuits. Damned if they do, damned if they don't, basically.

      At least this way, Linux is trying to head the FUD off at the pass, before real damage can be done. And if I was a decision maker, I'd view it as a mark of confidence in a product if they're willing to stand up to Microsoft.
  • ...doesn't mean Microsoft won't go through with them, and doesn't mean they won't be a major PITA for whoever ends up being the target. "Sue me first" is cute but an unwise idea. That said, I doubt it'll make any difference, as I'm sure their lawyers will line up whatever targets are strategically optimal (e.g. highest payoff with best chance of success), not random people on blogs who are asking for lawsuits.
    • Just because the lawsuits are frivolous...
      I don't recall anyone, well anyone apart from the odd slashdotter, chuckling when Microsoft got their clock cleaned in the Eolas suit, despite the silliness of the suit, all the prior art and all the support they received from the industry. For a small to medium sized company a patent decision against you could well be the end. So I would say there is very little frivolity involved in facing a patent action.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:48PM (#19215157)
    Wouldn't it have been pointed out in the Lindows case? I mean if Lindows is stealing patents AND your trademark, wouldn't it be an open and shut case?
  • by Vexler (127353) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:48PM (#19215159) Journal
    "I AM SPARTACUS!!!"

    Let's see whether Microsoft runs out of cruciforms first or the Open Source community runs out of people first.

    It's on.
    • Let's see whether Microsoft runs out of cruciforms first...

      You know, that's both the most insightful and the most disturbing metaphor I've ever heard about this issue thus far.
  • Should use the money to buy Sealand [sealandgov.org], where there is no copyright, trademark or patent law.
  • by NeverVotedBush (1041088) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:53PM (#19215221)
    Actually, I think this is great. People standing up and telling Microsoft to shove it.

    For too long Microsoft has bullied and intimidated. They have monopolized, stolen code (remember the Stacker lawsuit?), and tried to dominate the entire world. Sadly, they did pretty well at it.

    But now, Linux is, IMHO, ready for the general user and the common desktop. It doesn't require the skills that it once did thanks to Gnome and KDE. For most people, web browsing, reading e-mail, and processing word documents, spreadsheets, and presentations, Linux looks and feels pretty damn close to Windows - but has added enhancements, has better security, and is far cheaper to own.

    I'm sure these latest developments, with Dell offering Ubuntu, Vista being bad-mouthed by gamers and office users alike, and open sourcers far and wide mocking Microsoft and it's chair-throwing flunkie, Bill and company are just a wee tad worried.
  • by Timoteo47 (1080787) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:54PM (#19215235)
    The open source community should call Microsoft's bluff and file a pre-emptive class action lawsuit. The lawsuit would basically challenge the court to decide whether or not Linux and other open source projects violate Microsoft's patents. This has been done before when a company is under threat of lawsuit, they preemptively ask the court to decide if what they are doing is legal. This removes the cloud of a potential lawsuit so that the threatened company can conduct business. Of course you would want to file the lawsuit in Federal court in San Francisco.
    • hi,

      I am a lawyer with a very small civil practice in San Francisco. IMHO, t would be possible to file a declaratory relief action. Almost anyone who has been encumbered by a Microsoft patent threat would have standing to do so. I would be willing to participate in such a lawsuit, obviously, since my name is the first on the TFA "Sue me" list.

      In order for a declaratory relief lawsuit to work, we would need to have coordinated action by some of the other large stakeholders whose businesses would be impacted by Microsoft's questionable PR patent campaign against FOSS. That takes time, planning, and money, though.

      In the meantime, I wanted to take some action now to see if we could at least get a show of hands of people who doubt Microsoft's questionable PR patent campaign. I believe that few in the FOSS community really believe that Microsoft's purported patent claims have merit. So we probably need to shout really loud, so that the rest of the world can see and hear us. We don't want people to believe that a) We in the FOSS community are doing anything that is illegal, because we're not; or b) that we have doubts about whether or not Microsoft's questionable PR patent claims have merit (they don't, IMHO).

      IMHO, we really can't allow Microsoft to dominate the airwaves with its questionable patent claims against us.

      Christian Einfeldt,
      Producer, The Digital Tipping Point
  • /.-ed (Score:3, Funny)

    by SpaceLifeForm (228190) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:54PM (#19215239)
    Digitaltippingpoint - Hmmm, appropriately named.
  • by lpq (583377) on Monday May 21, 2007 @07:57PM (#19215263) Homepage Journal
    Seems the site is a bit swamped...must be all the people signing up to be sued...

  • MS is just jealous that IBM's stock price almost caught up to MS's. Those evil people at IBM, turning OpenSource into a business model! The Battle Royale will be MS vs. IBM. The good news is that IBM is good at this game and has already played it with SCO. Hmmmm.. what shape SCO is in these days.... can you say "DELISTED"? I knew that you could... :)
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by joe_bruin (266648)
      MS is just jealous that IBM's stock price almost caught up to MS's

      At close of market today, IBM's market capitalization was 158.94 billion Dollars. Microsoft's was 297.05 billion. Your definition of "almost" is rather loose.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Score Whore (32328)
      How does it feel to be fringe?

      MS doesn't have an open source business model. They have a "we'll give you almost anything if you pay us" business model.

      You also should know that back in the 70s and 80s IBM had a multistory building full of lawyers for the sole purpose of fighting the US government. SCO is nothing.

      BTW. IBM's market cap (source) [yahoo.com] is $159 US billion. Microsoft's is $297 US billion. Neither company could possibly litigate until their opponent went out of business.
      • by BCW2 (168187)
        "Neither company could possibly litigate until their opponent went out of business."

        Don't you have any faith at all in the greed of lawyers?
  • by f0dder (570496) on Monday May 21, 2007 @08:02PM (#19215325)
    from digg.. Much has been written about Microsoft's allegation of patent infringements in Linux (by which I'm sure they mean GNU/Linux ;-) ). I don't think Microsoft is the real threat, and in fact, I think Microsoft and the Linux community will actually end up fighting on the same side of this issue. .... And I'm pretty certain that, within a few years, Microsoft themselves will be strong advocates against software patents. Why? Because Microsoft is irrevocably committed to shipping new software every year, and software patents represent landmines in their roadmap which they are going to step on, like it or not, with increasing regularity. They can't sit on the sidelines of the software game - they actually have to ship new products. And every time they do that, they risk stepping on a patent landmine. They are a perfect target - they have deep pockets, and they have no option but to negotiate a settlement, or go to court, when confronted with a patent suit... Read the rest here. http://www.markshuttleworth.com/archives/118 [markshuttleworth.com]
    • by 4e617474 (945414) on Monday May 21, 2007 @10:19PM (#19216349)

      They can't sit on the sidelines of the software game - they actually have to ship new products. And every time they do that, they risk stepping on a patent landmine.

      That's not that big a risk. License a patent, pay some damages, buy the competition. They don't really hurt that badly in any of those scenarios. It's when some high-rolling PHB says "What do you have that can do the job of this other software that I heard about?" and they have to say "Nothing." that they really hurt. What keeps them filling their swimming pools with a fresh batch of c-notes every week is that the sheep don't have to know the name of more than one software company.

  • by Fox_1 (128616) on Monday May 21, 2007 @08:09PM (#19215419)
    First they came for the Hackers, and I didn't speak up, because I wasn't a Hacker. Then they came for Novell, and I didn't speak up, because I don't use Novell. Then they came for the Linux Users, and I didn't speak up, because I was a Windows user. Then they came for me, and by that time there was no one left to speak up for me.
  • RE: jakshamesh! (Score:2, Interesting)

    by LaurieDash (983898)
    Microsoft may well step up but that does not mean they want to. I believe they are intending to scare the open source community, which will in turn (however subconsciously) affect the future open source development. Not insulting the open source community's intelligence in any way, i'm just saying when a developer is working on a new feature they're gonna have this threat in the back of their mind and may choose to make less inovative choices due to this threat, no matter how "fuck you" they think they ar
    • I believe they are intending to scare the open source community...

      I don't think this is their primary goal. The people they want to scare are their current and potential customers. Follow the money.

  • Remember, that in America at least, court cases are generally won by money not truth. On television, people win court cases on merit. Frankly, Micro$oft can throw in a few attorney's to fud things up and confuse the judge, then throw in a bribe or two to close the deal. It really is not relevant if M$ has any patents or not. They have money...like O.J. did.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by NullProg (70833)

      Remember, that in America at least, court cases are generally won by money not truth. On television, people win court cases on merit. Frankly, Micro$oft can throw in a few attorney's to fud things up and confuse the judge, then throw in a bribe or two to close the deal. It really is not relevant if M$ has any patents or not. They have money...like O.J. did.


      Generally, in America, anyone can bitch and complain about any legal decision they don't agree with. They can accuse a Judge of accepting bribes with no
  • by dgun (1056422) on Monday May 21, 2007 @08:16PM (#19215485) Homepage

    How many SUSE using Susie's could Microsoft sue If Microsoft could sue SUSE using Susie's who sell sea shells down by the sea shore?

    Answer: None. I think.

  • Hey, is it just me or did we manage to /. the "Sue me first" site? Their server seems to be curled up fetal on the bottom of the rack right now. Good job guys.

    --Tomas
  • ....a slight name change: MicroSCOft.
  • Sparticus (Score:2, Funny)

    by rgravina (520410)
    I'm Sparticus! No, I'm Sparticus!

    (OK, so they aren't searching for someone in particular but close enough).
  • Honorary 'Stig' (Score:3, Informative)

    by MrCreosote (34188) on Monday May 21, 2007 @08:59PM (#19215775)
    I suggest that anyone who takes up Microsoft's offer of a patent license, henceforth be labeled a 'Stig', in honor of Stig O'Tracy from Monty Pythons 'Piranha Brothers' Sketch

    Presenter Another man who had his head nailed to the floor was Stig O' Tracey.
            Cut to another younger more cheerful man on sofa.
    Interviewer Stig, I've been told Dinsdale Piranha nailed your head to the floor.
    Stig No, no. Never, never. He was a smashing bloke. He used to give his mother flowers and that. He was like a brother to me.
    Interviewer But the police have film of Dinsdale actually nailing your head to the floor.
    Stig Oh yeah, well - he did that, yeah.
    Interviewer Why?
    Stig Well he had to, didn't he? I mean, be fair, there was nothing else he could do. I mean, I had transgressed the unwritten law.
    Interviewer What had you done?
    Stig Er... Well he never told me that. But he gave me his word that it was the case, and that's good enough for me with old Dinsy. I mean, he didn't want to nail my head to the floor. I had to insist. He wanted to let me off. There's nothing Dinsdale wouldn't do for you.
  • Microsoft doesn't have any interest in suing current Linux users for patent infringement. They are small potatoes. Microsoft just wants to keep current Windows users under their thumb, and they really want to keep the vassals like Dell in line. It's pretty clear that Microsoft has come down from the mountain with the One Commandment for OEMs: 'Thou shall not sell a desktop or notebook system without a Microsoft tax'. Since for Microsoft OEMs, disobeying their lord and master means nearly instant death, they
  • Linux: D00D I'm in your base killing your FUD!!!11!!! XD
    Microsoft: OHHH SHIT!
  • hi, sorry about this. Slashdot has crushed our server. I hope to get it back up soon. My apologies for the inconvenience.

    Christian Einfeldt,
    Producer, The Digital Tipping Point
  • by NZheretic (23872) on Monday May 21, 2007 @09:27PM (#19215981) Homepage Journal
    If a business or government body is not taking due care with the private information they hold on the public which could lead to identity theft then they are at risk of being sued.

    1) Demand the business or government body to disclose copies of the anti virus logs for all of their desktops and laptops.
    2) Generate a list of all the malware that
    a) was cleaned up post infection ( the malware was actually executed and run ) AND
    b) exploited vulnerabilities in Microsoft applications and operating system prior to an update fix being made available by Microsoft.

    In comparison to MacOSX or Linux based desktop, Microsoft's desktop operating systems and Microsoft's desktop applications face a disproportionally higher risk of being "infected" with hostile malware. Just relying on third party Antivirus software to prop up a Microsoft flagging security record in no way puts you any closer to the level of security that a switch to another vendors desktop platform can provide. ( Just updating to Vista is no guarantee of better security in comparison to another vendors platform )

    A business or government body is not taking due care with the private information they hold on the public if they continue to use Microsoft desktop OS environments or Microsoft desktop applications. That is your credit card data, banking details , health care info and social security information. If switching to Linux or MacOSX based desktops would greatly reduce the risk of further intrusion why should not organizations be "encouraged" to make the move.

    If anyone's customers are at greater risk of being sued it is Microsoft's own customers that face the greatest risk.

  • Polar Opposites (Score:3, Interesting)

    by bitspotter (455598) on Monday May 21, 2007 @09:34PM (#19216027) Journal
    In legal matters, The Free Software Foundation [[http://www.techliberation.com/archives/041419.ph p doesn't want money; they want compliance]]. Microsoft, on the other hand, doesn't want compliance; they want money. It should be no surprise, then that they are not interested in helping the FOSS community to come back into compliance with their patents; any violation could mean revenue.

    Of course, "could" is just a possibility. If they actually ever went to court, software patents might be overturned in general, particular patents could be invalidated specifically, claims made with valid patents could be found non-infringing, the community would likely recode the claims found infringing to steer clear of the patent, AND Microsoft would still have to deal patent infringement countersuits launched in retaliation.

    It is far better for them attempt to profit from vague fear than vague fact.
  • by dexomn (147950) on Monday May 21, 2007 @09:38PM (#19216063)
    That's fucking gross man! You don't know where those have been!
  • Hey, dontcha just love the Microsoft PR machine!!! Here we are on Slashdot, talking about Microsoft's PR prowess, and Microsoft is kind enough to come along and give us a demonstration! On my screen, I am seeing advertisements for a kinder, gentler Microsoft, one that makes a donation to some unknown charity every time you use Microsoft IM. Oh, that's so sweet and cuddly! Just ignore those patent threats, boys and girls! We didn't mean any harm!

    This is exactly my point, and it's why I offered to have Microsoft sue me. Microsoft is doing an excellent job of PR, and we need to draw public attention to two basic facts: 1) Microsoft's patent claims are unmeritorious; and 2) Microsoft is making vague patent threats because self-censorship is cheaper and more powerful than filing patent infringement lawsuits that only work in the US, if they work at all.

    If you are not seeing the kinder, gentler IM donations on your screen, you can see them here on the Digital Tipping Point Flickr account, at least until Microsoft buys Yahoo, at which point you will see them only on our Google Picasa account:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/49947835@N00/50881358 7/ [flickr.com]

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/49947835@N00/50881358 3/ [flickr.com]

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/49947835@N00/50877703 8/ [flickr.com]

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/49947835@N00/50878264 1/ [flickr.com]

    Note to Microsoft counsel Brad Smith, Esq.: If you need documentary proof for your trial against me that I use Ubuntu GNU Linux, you can use this screenshot, which I am hereby vouching is a true and accurate shot depicting my Edgy Ubuntu desktop which, coincidentally, I am using to produce the Digital Tipping Point film. Among other things, the DTP film will suggest that Microsoft, like RCA and IBM before it, is facing an "innovator's dilemma" that will disrupt its current monopolistic business model. The funny thing is that the same market forces that propelled Microsoft to hammer IBM is now going to help IBM return the favor, this time using GNU Linux and OpenOffice.org. But I guess you knew that already, Sir Brad, because that is why you have been filing patents. You once worked at IBM. You learned well. Here is that proof you will want if you ever do file a case against me:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/49947835@N00/50878264 1/ [flickr.com]
  • by linvir (970218) on Tuesday May 22, 2007 @02:27AM (#19217799)

    I just had a good laugh at the expense of the people signed up for this. Either they don't care that their addresses are going to get harvested, or they're working under the delusion that obfuscation techniques like "jim at website dot com" can't be beaten by some very simple Perl.

    • by Brainix (748988)

      I don't care that my address is going to be harvested. I post it without obfuscation all over the web. I use Apple Mail (which has a spam filter) as a POP3 client for Gmail (which also has a spam filter). Every week, only about one spam trickles through Gmail, and Apple Mail always catches it. And neither has ever marked a legitimate email as spam.

      Also, I think it makes more of a statement to provide my email address.

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