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Re: lynx-dev lynx: ftp anonymous password

From: David Woolley
Subject: Re: lynx-dev lynx: ftp anonymous password
Date: Fri, 15 Feb 2002 21:55:33 +0000 (GMT)

> I see a lot of problems:
> - Sending the user name if the user doesn't know that it's sent doesn't protec
*t the user state of ANONYMOUS

This is the convention for FTP sites (rather like keeping to 75 characters
is for email!).  Anonymous in FTP really means unauthenticated.

> - Spyware is not a good idea, most users don't like it.

Lynx is not doing anything sneaky; it is just the user that is not
aware of the conventions.  Traditionally the user would have had to
manually key the email address.

> - Sending the user name helps SPAM instead of stopping it. Many ftp sites use 
> *this information to send you unsolicited email.

Most unlikely, given the very few people that send valid usernames these
days, and the fact that the sort of organisations that send spam tend
to run pure HTTP, not HTTP/FTP.  SPAM tends to originate from mailing
list, USENET and web forum postings and from inclusion on web pages.  
Directed semi-spam results from most e-commerce transactions.

On the other hand, there is an awkward point about FTP sites in that
they are rather one sided in favour of the consumer.  With HTTP sites,
you can pay for the site by taking the advertising, but that doesn't
work for FTP.  Taking files using a forged name doesn't give the site
any benefit in many cases.

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