[LINK] Forms (was RE:Putting "no spam" warnings on websites)
nospam at crm911.com
Wed Apr 21 21:01:19 EST 2004
> > How do you feel about human-readable, non-machine readable email
> > addresses?
> The way to achieve this is to display an address as an image.
> Humans will see it but text-scanning bots will not.
> You could even link the image to a web-form.
I think this covers all bases. Several whois databases do this (the image, not
I have used all the other types on my current web sites. The encoded address has
survived unscathed because I left the mailto: colon in clear text, while the rest
was encoded. Someone out there has a web-based test where you supply your URL and
it will find all hidden email addresses no matter how you obfuscate them, e.g.
"at", (at) etc, but it didn't pick up mine owing to the little variation I made.
Yes, tighter code could be written.
"The ACCC is concerned that web sites do not mislead or deceive consumers. It's
important to remember that the same consumer protection laws which apply 'off
line' apply on-line. Web sites needs to comply with the Trade Practices Act in the
same way that a classified you put in the newspaper or a representation you make
to a customer does."
Lots of web sites don't sell to consumers, or don't sell anything. Most of my
sites are hobbyist, informative ones. I offer a mix of email address, obfuscated
email address, encoded email address, contact form, detailed requirements form,
and sometimes all of the above. Horses for courses.
I think the ACCC would be swamped if it tackled print ads in the suburban press.
How many tradesmen display their street address or landline numbers in the ads or
even on their receipts? About 20 years ago you couldn't supply a PO Box as an
address in a classified ad, but today a mobile number is enough? Many businesses
only display a 13xxxx phone number in TV ads. The majority have absolutely no
contact information. So why do we think that the ACCC will pick on web sites?
Is the average Aussie more likely to left with a tradesman they could not contact
at a later date, or a web site owner who only offers a form? In most cases, a web
site owner is easier to trace than some shonky business folk we see on A Current
I don't buy the argument about forms being inconvenient or unusable. Link has a
few members with their own preferences and prejudices, but so what? Out there
there are people who don't believe in electricity, technology, other religions,
minorities - you won't get their business no matter what you do. It's called risk
It is trivially easy to include a field where you can cc yourself and have a copy
of the correspondence. I have seen forms with cc and Bcc fields. If you are ever
at the business end of these forms (I mean business=commerce) and you have to deal
with tens of thousands of records, you will swear by forms.
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