Tagged: Spamming Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Michael Krakovskiy 10:41 pm on February 11, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Advance-fee fraud, , British Columbia, , Crime in Nigeria, , , online game, Social engineering, Spamming,   

    My Advice to Russian Bride Hunters 

    I recently received an email from a reader who wanted advice about seeking a Russian bride. I decided to post my snarky, although relatively detailed reply here. After I sent the email, I realized that there’s a book on the subject

    that according to one review is “simply ‘excellent’. It is factual without being offensive. It’s helpful without being overbearing. It is instructive without being condescending.” I don’t think I managed any of these feats, but here’s what I wrote:

    Ancient Odessa, coin, erotic scene. II-III century BC.

    Hey, ….. .

    Your potential mailorder bride is most likely a scammer. I am about to give you and those like you some advice, which might turn out useful to some and entertaining to others (I plan on posting my reply on my blog).

    Seeking a foreign bride is not a simple, risk free, or casual process. It is not impossible though: one of my female friends married an Australian, another a Briton. These two pairs are extremely happy together.

    You claim that you are having problems finding a “normal chick to settle down with.” I think I know what you mean by that, but I am not sure that you do. In my interpretation you blame your inability to find a mate on the quality of the pool of potential dates available to you.

    By definition, “normal” means standard, usual, average. Since the majority is never “not normal” (unless you are in a psychiatric institution), there must be another explanation. It’s probably a combination of your high standards in selecting a mate (model looks, high paying job, domestic excellence) and your lack of same qualities. In short you are looking for a girl out of your league.

    So here you think: there are these places where the girls are super hot, live in poverty (and thus aren’t spoiled) and will jump at a chance of snagging a knight in shining armor who will whisk them away to America. Your thinking is correct. Being American with some money will let you fish in the deep end of the gene pool in many a foreign land.

    Russian and Ukrainian cities are teeming with ultrahotness: Slavic female beauty is world famous. There is no obesity epidemic there due to superior quality of food, so sometimes it looks like city centers are overrun by hordes of supermodels. The ubiquitous blond hair and rare eye colors are a part of the local genetic markup.

    Meanwhile, widespread alcoholism in men is far from being an untrue stereotype, and there are many men wearing purses in the street and speedos at the beach. Simply not being an alcoholic and having a modicum of fashion sense are great assets there. Basic hygiene is also not really a default in men there. Boldness and fatness is not as repulsive to women in those parts of the world, and an American citizenship is an outright aphrodisiac.

    So, those are all the advantages that you have there. What about disadvantages? A shared background is a cornerstone of a healthy relationship. You and your potential bride grew up speaking different languages, reading different books, eating different food, watching different tv shows. There might be some overlap in music, but the overall experiences that the two you of had were vastly different. That gap has to be bridged somehow, and it seems very likely to me that you will leave this burden to the girl. She will have to suffer the tremendous cultural shock upon arriving in the US (I know I have), she will have to speak English. Based on your spelling and grammar you do not strike me as good with learning languages, and Russian is a difficult one to learn. You also show a good level of ignorance of Russian culture, geography and history. That is a big handicap.

    So, yes, there are millions of “normal chicks” there, but you are limited only to English-speaking ones, of which there aren’t too many. Most “normal chicks” find it as hard to learn a second language as you are. So in practice the pool of girls that you are looking mostly consist of girls that have unrealistic expectations of life in the US, scammers (some of which are not actually girls), and those girls who can’t find “normal dudes” because of one issue or another.

    Even if you get through all the logistical and bureaucratic nightmares, there are some tough odds to overcome. Imagine yourself in a freshly minted mailorder bride’s place: being a stranger in a strange land, feeling exploited and locked into a marriage, no old friends to lean on, having to speak English 100% of the time, homesickness etc, etc. That is some tough situation. If you are not god’s gift to women where you live, your foreign bride stressed by all the changes will probably not like you much better, but will be locked into staying married to you for a good while. It’d be exploitative of you, wouldn’t it?

    The scammers are sometimes crude, sometimes very sophisticated. A friend of mine mentioned a girl that communicates in the way that you described with dozens of men, with the intent of scamming them. “She doesn’t ask me to send money, to go visit, or anything else like that.” That is a good sign, but this usually does not last: a good scammer does not want to set the hook too early. The fact that she does not own a tv or a computer and uses a friend’s computer at work seems suspicious to me. Her story – too smooth. You can’t be too careful in these situations.

    Remember I mentioned my two friends who made their relationships work? The guys they married are very good looking, hard working, and have outstanding personalities. One pair met in an online game (true story), another at a university. Both girls spoke near-flawless English (the men did not learn more than a few phrases in Russian, very typically).

    So here’s my final bit of advice: if you do want yourself a beauty from the former USSR — learn Russian, at the very least read everything you’ll find in Wikipedia about the places where you’ll be looking, but better thoroughly educate yourself about Russian and Ukrainian history, politics, current affairs. Then do some traveling. Then you might be ready for something like what you are attempting. If you will learn enough Russian and will travel there, you can get laid with impunity without having to go through with the whole marriage thing, unless the “sex tourist” label bothers you.

     
  • Michael Krakovskiy 12:14 pm on January 3, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Bayesian spam filtering, , , configurable software, Cox, Dorian, , , , FriendFeed, , Google Reader, , , , Scrubs, , Spam filtering, Spamming, , ,   

    Cognitive Filtering and Bayesian RSS 

    I hope one thing from the future will become popular in 2009: cognitive filtering. If the Internet was Dr. Dorian from the hit tv show “Scrubs”, I would be Dr. Cox with his list of things he cares very little about.

    I got this idea from a science fiction book. In John C. Wright’s Golden Age Trilogy the singularity happened and people can upgrade and back up their wetware in any way they can afford. They still had the same problem that Henry Kuttner described in his short story “Year Day” – an overbearing amount of very innovative ads that masquerade as information and other spam. The trick in Golden Age was cognitive filtering: configurable software that removed any manifestations of anything an owner considered unpleasant: ads, sounds, pictures, symbols, and even people.

    I like Twitter, and I like Robert Scoble. But I am tired of Robert’s relentless posts about friendfeed (sometimes I’m not even sure if he works with me at Fast Company or at friendfeed). Filtering this out would not be too hard – I could just ignore any post that has “friendfeed” in it. In fact, a Bayesian filter for Google reader, Facebook, and Twitter after a bit of training could do this automatically: I’d just flag posts that annoy me and the filter would analyze the words in the post, figure out which ones occur together more frequently in the posts that annoy me and hide future annoying posts based on that.

    To take this a bit further, I would also like a Bayesian filter that would find me good posts from the firehydrant rss flow based on the ones I already like. There seem to be a few of these out there, but I find it hard leaving Google Reader.

     
  • Michael Krakovskiy 6:38 am on November 26, 2008 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Asterisk, audio-cock technology, , Blacklist, , , , , , , , Modem, New Zealand, PBX, Phonespamfilter technology, , , Spamming, ,   

    Paid ReviewMe Post: Phone Spam Filter 

    These days a controversial company RevieMe.com became downright unethical – they make it abundantly clear that they became a link purchasing company. On the other hand Phone Spam Filter is a site I don’t mind sharing Google juice with, so it’s a quick and fun way to add a 50 bucks to my Kindle fund. Here’s my review:

    The goal of this site is pretty simple: Phone Spam Filter is asking you to snitch on telemarketers. You search for a phone number that you received a marketing call from and then complain about it. Besides getting a little relief from venting at the phone spammers, you get a bit of satisfaction from knowing that you added them to a blacklist. Nothing good can come out of this for the dinner-interrupting bastards. Meanwhile it’s a good place to find out if mysterious phone numbers that show up on your phone are from run of the mill telemarketers or not.

    The even cooler thing is that they have an API that can help you block calls from this blacklist if you have an Asterisk PBX or are willing to install some Windows software and have a modem connected to a phone line. While Asterisk is pretty awesome, running Windows and having a modem connected to a phone line is a horrible idea these days – there are dozens of viruses that want nothing more than make a few 1-900 phonecalls. In the future Phone Spam Filter guys are hoping to add integration with VOIP providers.

    The Phonespamfilter technology is not as cool as JWZ-endorsed audio-cock technology (“their computer’s speakers should create some sort of cock-shaped soundwave and plunge it repeatedly through their skulls”), but I guess it’s a start.

    They also have sites in Australia, New Zealand, France, and UK

     
c
Compose new post
j
Next post/Next comment
k
Previous post/Previous comment
r
Reply
e
Edit
o
Show/Hide comments
t
Go to top
l
Go to login
h
Show/Hide help
shift + esc
Cancel