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The Witches' Voice made the decision from day one to evolve this web site based on your input. What does our community think about... Spam, ethics, commercialism of the Craft, politics etc. So many questions are hotly debated. In this chapter of WitchVox we simply ask hard questions directly to the community itself. New surveys will pop up from time to time and be announced on the WitchVox home page.
 Author: Pagan Community    Posted: Sep. 4, 1999   This Page Viewed: 18,397  

WitchVox Survey #2 - Spam
Duration: August 23rd through August 28th 1999
Results: Posted the first week of September 1999
Survey Results: Click HERE for the actual results of this survey.
General thoughts on Spam... ONE - TWO - THREE - FOUR - FIVE - SIX

Community Thoughts Specifically on PAGAN SPAM

I particularly detest the concept of Pagans spamming other Pagans. I expect and demand better behavior than that. And I hope other Pagans do too. - Snorri Severian Laurelsson

When I bother to put my name and email address on a public forum such as the Witches Voice I know that I will likely receive personal email from interested people. I accept and welcome personal email because I have only recently begun looking for other pagans to network with and so I have few contacts at this time. However unsolicited mass email is not welcome and is only a waste of time and energy as I delete it on sight. I invite PEOPLE to come talk to me. If I want to join an organization or list or if I want to buy something off of the web I will look for it myself. I do not look kindly on aggressive advertising practices and indeed these usually turn me off completely to whatever company tries to use them on me. Passive advertising will be much more effective with me as will sponsorship on the sites that need and want sponsorship. - Kethlenn Wolfdreamer

I am very fortunate that my ISP is pretty tight on spam control. Very few mass emailings slip through. The only one I got was a Pagan-oriented one from a Brit fellow flogging his little chaos clique. I left a shame on you message in his guestbook. I do not blame Witchvox for this because one of their goals is to bring Pagans and Witches together. Unfortunately there are people who see nothing wrong with swiping addresses that trusting people put on the Contacts pages. When this happens I think that the good people at The Vox should slam them- or at least block them from accessing the site. - Sunfell

What annoys me the most about the SPAM I am recieving these days is that the people I am recieving it from KNOW BETTER. They arent newbies either on the net or in the Pagan Community. They simply assume that I am not going to mind one more piece of mail in my mailbox about some project or concern that is near and dear to their heart or their pocket book. Well I do mind. I mind because there are many other way to get this information out. Make a website. Sign a guestbook. Write a congressman. That last one takes pen paper and a stamp items way too many of us are strangers to these days. Yes these ways take a bit of work. But that is better than snitching addresses off of someone elses website and riding on someone elses laurels. If you do it this way I am more likely to take your cause and you seriously. - Lilith Silverhair

I definitely appreciate your efforts to eliminate spam to pagans. Junk mail in any form is a waste of time and resources. We are all capable of seeking sites and information. Too bad so many are too lazy to say no. - Khyra

Note to people who think I want to receive mass emails because they are Pagan in nature and might interest me If you want me to support your cause or subscribe to your newsletter the way to do it is not to send me unsolicited email. All that will accomplish is me forwarding the email to your ISPs abuse address via Spam Cop. - Firefly

I have gotten very frustrated wth spam though I would never blaim the Witches Voice for people using their e-mail lists improperly they have clearly states that they do not provide these addresses for commercial gain and those that choose to ignore those warnings are the ones responsible. I have tried being polite but it is clear to me both in an out of the pagan community that spammers do not care who they upset as long as they get one positive response. The key to stopping spam is to get the spammers where it hurts DO NOT BUY PRODUCTS FROM PEOPLE OR COMPANIES THAT SEND SPAM boycott them. If no one bought products from spammers they wont bother to send the mass emails and if it hurt their business they would stop. - Caliana

In our Pagan community we expect a certain amount of responsibility on the parts of our fellow members. Obviously however many members are unwilling to bear their burden of that responsibility. If they cannot be bothered to follow simple courtesy and have to do things their way then they should deal with the consequences their own actions have caused.It may be harsh but perhaps a listing of those caught spamming should be shown as a way of forcing this accountability. While the cause may be just their use of any means to get justice destroys their own honor. - Rev. Catherine M. Wagner

These Spammers are definitely NOT following the Rede when they steal the addresses and send out their bulk e-mails. By stealing the addresses they show a complete disregard for the Rede and for their fellow pagans. When they send out the e-mails with no thought as to whether or not the recipient wants it they are attempting to force their will on us. Karma will indeed give these people a swift kick in the ass and likely sooner rather than later. The Pagan Community is generally activist. We wont frequent businesses or participate in lists that spam us over and over. So to all of you Spammers Is the possibility of gain now worth the probabability of loss later - Richard Obsydyan Eicher

I find unsolicited email very irritating but I expect it from porn peddlers and frauds. I find unsolicited email from the pagan community far more annoying. I have on occasion received unsolicited email from pagan sources - always with the polite If you contact us we will remove you from the list. It seems that this is only a one-time offer because within six months I see the same mail in my box again. It is not my responsibility to tell the spammer what I do or do not want to receive after they have sent it. If I wanted what they had to offer I would have asked. I have no objection to personal email responses to something I have posted somewhere. I vigorously object to being solicited by mailing lists and causes especially pagan ones. My faith my practice and the actions I wish to take involving them are my choice and I do not like unwanted impersonal influence as I feel that it is not in keeping with this community. - Virago

I think spam is annoying to say the least and definately not expected FROM the pagan community... - Duste Barker

I was recently the victim of a bit of spam and my correspondence with the senders has made me more against it than ever before. I was sent an email with a link to an online store for cheap pagan supplies. I emailed the sender and asked them how they had gotten my name. I recieved a very terse one line unsigned reply of we get lists of names. I replied and asked them to please take me off their list and tell me who sent them my name in the first place. Obviously I have received no reply to this. I value and appreciate the steps the Witches Voice has taken to combat this menace. Please Please Keep it up - RavenWays

When I receive spam I usually forward it to the webmaster at their ISP. IMO this is the internet equivalent of telephone solicitation.....BTW it doesnt matter to me what religion spam is. I dont care if its Pagan atheist fundamentalist whatever. - Ananda

I do not appreciate getting spam from any source. I particularly dislike getting it from a pagan source who obviously got my name from a pagan website I have either visited or am listed on. Advertising to me is fine so long as its done without shoving it down my throat in e-mail. Consider my e-mail box my living room. Spammers get the same response as door to door salesmen do. I hope they get the point from this survey. btw When a spammer does send me something I might otherwise have been interested in... I immediately find a different source. - Zyalia the crone

I believe that taking an email address and sending an unsolicited mailing is just as rude amongst the pagan community as those horrible pornographic mailings you cant seem to avoid on AOL. It is rude and obnoxious. - Tia Dawn

I will aways complain to the spammers ISP and to my own and forward both emails and full headers to whever seems to be connected with the spammer in whatever manner. It has led to more than a few pagan spammers losing their accounts. - Rowan

pagan spam or porn spam i dont care i dont like it is evil evil i tell you. - Oborot Shadow Walker

Hi dear ones. Im really very ambivalent about this issue. Im the owner of an independent record label called Silver Wheel Music. Ive submitted this label and its URL to your directories and updated the link when we changed our URL to Im really not sure how I feel about your no spam rule because manys the time Ive looked hungrily at the many pagan shops you have links to and yearned to send them notification of our existence and send them a CD to listen to as a merchandise sample. But Ive honored your rules. I hate spam myself but Im also trying to run a business so Ive only sent CDs and press kits to shops I found elsewhere on the Net and not on The Witches Voice. I understand how important it is to feel that this zone the Witchvox zone should feel like a safe place. But at the same time I wish I could ask the many shops in your directory to support me. So for now Ill just have to look them up elsewhere. I love your site and your ideals and I will continue to respect them. - Argante Comyn

Are these spammers pagan themselves I certainly hope not. I think its a pretty disgusting thing to do and I hope you all keep up the fight against it - Mark Waddell

My husband is a member of aol and you cant do ANYTHING on there without being harvested. I have reported the violators time and time again but to no successful end. This goes for pagan as well as secular spam. Its just horrid to me that people can get away with this. If I KNEW that things would be done that would help eliminate the problem if I reported it...I would GLADLY report all who spammed me to wherever the site asked me to report it. -

We agree with you Wren and Fritz. Pagan Spam is the worst kind of spam because it preys on those who gave out their addresses In Perfect Love and Perfect Trust. We completely support your efforts to reduce the proliferation of unsolicited mass email. We assure you that the overwhelming majority of our community and circle mates agree with us and you and we will encourage them to let you know themselves. Thank you once again for all your work and support of the Pagan Community. - Eddie Ortiz and Teresa Marshall

I really do like to check out pagan web sites but I would really like to do this on my own. If I want something on the web I am perfectly capable of finding it given the time. I dont like having anything pushed on me. Its like those pushy sales people you always run into at car lots and clothing stores. - Star Firewolf

Even pagan spam is still spam. It may be somewhat more appropriate than a Viagra sales pitch but it is still uninvited. I could find that stuff for my self if I was truly interested. Thanks Wren and Fritz for the great follow up on this trend. - Wolfe Rowanspear

I dont mind Pagan related Spam as I beleive it could be a link to others like me. I am always trying to learn more of the craft and welcome this type of Spam mostly because of the feeling of contact. I do not like other types of Spam and often fight the urge to be hostile toward these people but I have to wonder where they got the information as I give my email to very few people. Thank you as always for letting me feel like part of the community. - Blue Dophin Moon

Spam concerns me especially when we are dealing with a Pagan population. More and more Pagans are youths who are anxious to join a group or find someone to teach them. They can be particularly vulnerable because of their inexperience. The belief that anyone identifying themselves as a Pagan must be a good person is entirely too common. Even among adults who should know better. There are people with ulterior motives who will take advantage of the openness of Pagans. They offer products or classes at unreasonable prices. They make promises to bestow magical powers or to teach what they themselves dont know. They even use rituals as a means to get sex. Spam just gives them another opportunity to do harm. Its important for providers and website administrators to fight against Pagan Spam but we also need to get out information on things like internet safety and how to check out a new contact. Given these tools its up to teens to take responsibility for their safety. In fact its a really great way for them to prove the maturity most profess to have -

Honestly if the spam were involved with the area Im most interested in pagan news shops etc. rather than the ubiquitous make money schemes then I would not mind in most cases. - Greine

Pagan spam upsets me more than most other though the reason behind that is that as a pagan I find it really offensive that people are invading our sacred spaces designed for companionship and education and turning it against us. - Shealyn

Fortunalely I have not had to experience Pagan Spamming. Hopefully I never will. - Sorchaskye

The last Pagan SPAM I got was from someone and his/her/their gobbly gook newsletter. I didnt like rxing it and I didnt think the appology they gave for grabbing names from Witch Vox went far enough. - Tall Sword

Spammers are opportunists in the worst sense. I expect rampant commercialism in the general culture since it is rooted in materialism. I do not expect nor do I appreciate this attitude in a Human/Humane venue such as the internet. It is particularly offensive in the Spiritual arena where people are attempting to learn share and celebrate. We must all reject these attitudes if we are to participate in a culture which serves all its members. Not just someones personal adjenda. PAGANS DO NOT PROSELYTIZE. We have a wonderful opportunity to reach out to each other worldwide in honorable and respectful ways. We must solved these problems in order to keep this opportunity. Put on your thinking caps Blessed Be - NannaBee

If I post the address in a Pagan room I expect to receive pagan SPAM. If I am not interested in reading the mail I delete it. If I am annoyed by the quantity of mail I receive I ask to have my name removed from the list. Pagan contacts are sometimes hard to make so I can understand the temptation for a person starting a new business to want to inform the people listed on your website of what services they can provide. I think that by trying to stop this from happening you are putting alot of time and energy into a situation which is near to impossible to regulate. -

What has been temporarily effective was when I became very active in tracking down their provider and complaining and in one case reporting a site and e-mail spam for child porn to the police. I am tired now I just delete it all and periodically change my e-mail address. - Vicki Crutchfield

Pagan spam is only a very small portion of the spam I receive.. but it does add to the total mess. - Calis Moonelf

I dont have a problem with *noncommercial* spam. If its send healing energy to MorningGlory or Heres something I think the pagan community needs to know about that doesnt upset me. I *despise* buy my stuff spam and it offends me. But noncommercial stuff is kind of like a phone tree or a poster on a tree -- informative and harmless. - Betsy

I work for a national ISP - I deal day in and day out with peoples problems and the general consenses is a feeling that you have been violated that your privacy has been invaded. For Pagans/Wiccans I feel that this is also a violation of An it harm none as spam DOES financially harm people and ISPs. The bulk email if formed improperly can also block someones email box hurting their business if they have one. It takes up a large amount of space collectively on any internet provider forcing them to add new equipment to provide the capacity and driving prices up. - Nightwalker

Wren and Fritz It may be necessary to quote closet unquote the list of contacts such that seekers would be required first to give their information to Witches Voice and then that information would be passed on to those who could take the initial contact and remain annonomous. On the other hand those who are listed may best be offered a choice of continuing to be listed and accept the risk of UMM or removal from the links on WOTW. It will be interesting to see what percentage of total mail is UMM. Free speech is risky and this may be difficult for some and become an unacceptable risk. I hope that as our community grows and matures such risks while inevitable will not stop the fundamental ways in which pagans behave. - John V Fauver

Pagan Spam to me is just like the other spam I get. I know from being on the internet for years that whenever I write my e-mail address down Im going to get unsolicited email. I treat it just like I treat the junk mail I get at home... I think both of you are very valuable assets to our community and as such your energies are better focused on doing what you love to do build and connect a stronger pagan community. Spammers will spam whatever they can. If you stop them here theyll go somewhere else and harvest our addresses. True your name wont be connected with it but we will still see similar spams. - Henna

I get enough of this garbage via financial message boards. Spam inviting me to some circle or to some nightclub dont work. There is a reason I am a solitaire. I dont care for the petty witch wars and personality cults certain elements enjoy so much.This pagan to too old for nightclubs. I keep season tickets to the local opera company and to the symphony for a reason.Spam slows the internet and overloads -

Pagan Spam as well as normal Spam is irritating to say the least. To organisation like yours and even to people like me getting about 20 spam on an average of 500 mails a day is very irritating because it fills up your mailbox. It can also lead to the bouncing of wanted mails. Maybe it would be a GOOD idea to make a messageboard where spammers real adresses are exposed and let them get the beating back. hmmm but is that the way of a wiccan. If you need help in anti-spamming Ill be willing to participate. Blessed Be Ailean breisleach - Ailean breisleach

I loathe any kind of spam including pagan spam. The great majority of it I delete. I simply do not believe that responding in any way is effective. But when a spammer used my employers email address I went after the spammer every way I could including reporting them to their ISP. I also traced the company that the spammer was selling products for and complained to the legal department AND I repeatedly called the spammers 800 phone number and left messages that it is not nice to spam. - Marlene Zimels

If people really need to announce things to a mass Pagan audience there are banner exchanges message boards and newsgroups which are far less annoying to people than harvesting their e-mail addresses from Pagan sites. We enter or rather SHOULD enter Pagan sites in perfect love and perfect trust and harvesting e-mails for commercials I feel in not in kind with that philosophy. - Aazari Cantharess

I do not want it. If I want to seek out Pagan information I will go to the website and request to be placed on the mailing list. I am a professional and I receive alot of work related e-mail. With the spam I average 100 e-mails daily. - Renda

Pagans are private folks for the most part.... People should be able to respect this.. - Gerike Foxwood

I hate Pagan Spam. - Katrina Katz

Pagan Spam big waste of time since unsolicited... invasion of privacy also. - Tarastar

I havent recieved any pagan spam. However I would feel just as frustraded with pagan as with any other form of mass mailing. I feel that any unsolicited mass mailing is spam. regardless of its purpose. - Shadowlark

I would like to see a system where people could send me all the SPAM they want to as along as they pay me for the priviliege. Im thinking 0.50 - 1.00 per page of unsolicited SPAM. the technology is out there it just has to be applied. Pagan SPAM is just like any other SPAM no good not bad just annoying. I have a finite number of heartbeats left and intend to use them in ways other than hitting the delete button. - IceDancer

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