Let’s Play Deliverability Bingo!



Check out Laura Atkins’ accompanying post over at the Word to the Wise blog.

Verizon to Delete Customer Email Addresses

A week or two ago, Verizon announced to its customers that it would begin decommissioning the free email addresses users of its home internet products. Back in June, Verizon closed on the acquisition of Aol for US$ 4.4-billion, and this may be a sign that Verizon will be looking to use Aol mail to replace that infrastructure.

In any event, be prepared for rising numbers of hard bounces from verizon.net recipients. Here is the text of the announcement:

We wanted to let you know that we changed our email policy. 
With this change, if you haven’t accessed your verizon.net email account in over 180 days, your email account will be deleted and cannot be reactivated.   This change only impacts yourverizon.net email account. Your access to myverizon.com will not be affected.
If this change applies to you and you’d like to keep your email account active, simply log in to webmail.verizon.com from a computer and check your email within the next 30 days.   Anyverizon.net email accounts that remain inactive after 30 days of this notice will be deleted, including the email address. 

Why not Zoidberg?

What the Verizon Acquisition of Aol Means to Senders

TL;DR: Not much.

Aol’s inbound mail infrastructure has been pretty wobbly for a while now, at least from the point of view of large senders. Though things seem to have improved since around April of last year, for a while intermittent outtages of their inbound MTAs had becoming something of a recurring challenge, and the punchline for a few jokes traded on Twitter.

Aol was the first to do a lot of cool things in the email space. They were the first to offer feedback loops, whitelisting services, and among the first to provide senders an idea of what their sending reputation might be. But it’s hard to stay in the front of the pack, especially when you’re facing challengers like Yahoo, Google, and Microsoft.

After years of losing eyeballs, Project Phoenix was announced in 2010. It was an ambitious idea that sought to create a slick, unified messaging platform that included mail, SMS, social media, and other channels. It earned kudos from the user community, but it never quite gained the traction it needed to re-position the company in the messaging space. Development on Phoenix was halted after less than a year.

Verizon isn’t shelling out US$4.4-billion for Aol’s eroding email user base, as many others have pointed out. That means I wouldn’t expect Verizon to prioritize any fixes for what may still be broken with Aol mail.

Reddit ranks the five biggest lies on the Internet

Inbox Zero

M3AAWG Publishes Reboot of Senders’ Best Common Practices Document

Today is another big day for email people: M3AAWG has announced the publication of the completely revised Best Common Practices document for Senders. I co-chair the Senders’ Committee along with my friend and colleague Tara Natanson of Constant Contact, and this document has been the Committee’s biggest project for the last 3 years or so.

I am honored to have been asked to write an introduction for publication on the M3AAWG public site. I think it came out well. An important part of understanding what the BCP is intended to do is understanding what it is not. Continue reading