One of the downsides in dealing with blogs is that sometimes people like to take potshots but won’t give their name, or they use a “handle” like NorcalBlogs infamous “Tasker”.
Sometimes even the ER print edition gets nailed by it. For example, during the Jeff Sloan affair, editor David Little accidentally published a couple of letters to the editor critical of the CUSD Board of Trustees that were emailed in that appeared valid, but were actually sent by a bogus author. Of course I can’t work up a whole lot of sympathy for that problem since the ER encourages a daily excercise in opinion without responsibility known as “Tell it to the ER”. What most people don’t realize is that email is traceable, leaving IP signatures that can even be traced down to the exact DSL or cable modem used to send the email, the type of PC or Mac computer used, and the email program used to author and send it.
Thats about to change.
So, its with some trepidation that I announce a new “10 minute email” service for all those anonymous cowards out there who like to fling opinion without having any responsibility for it. But I figure you’ll find out soon enough anyway, so I may as well make others aware of it so they can learn to deal with it.
It is called 10MinuteMail and you can see it at www.10MinuteMail.com
It gives you a temporary e-mail address, and lets you receive and reply to e-mail sent to that address. The e-mail address expires in 10 minutes (or more, you can extend it as you need more time). Basically it provides an easy way to avoid giving your real e-mail address to Web sites which require an e-mail from you to sign up. You could think of it as spam avoidance or “drive by email”.
I’m sure the cloak-and-dagger crowd will have fun conjuring up all manner of nefarious uses for such a transient communications tool. Drive by opinion just got easier I guess, but I suppose its up to editors and bloggers to ensure that posters have valid email addresses before they publish controversial work.
Now if we can just make SPAM expire in 10 minutes, we’ll really have something.