Thursday, July 10, 2008

Watch Your Language!

Watch your language
A technical observation by Edith Parzefall


Of course, as writers you should always pay close attention to the words you use, but maybe so far you didn't pay attention to all the important things...

A tale from Cyberspace ...

I tried to submit a chapter of my current work in progress to Novels-L. It didn't come through, so I tried again two days later. It still didn't work. The crits I sent during those two days appeared on the list just fine. So I contacted our admins, who were slightly baffled by the phenomenon.

I also told a friend on the list and she offered to submit the chapter for me. It didn't work from her account either. Very puzzling. By now I had three of our admins working on the problem with me -- all of them highly fascinated.

Bob carried out some tests and was able to determine the problem had to be somewhere in the e-mail body.

Greg suggested to chop up the chapter and narrow down the problem. I did.

After hours of testing various fragments of the chapter with a different server, I found the culprits and slapped my forehead:


My heroine says to a guy with a huge revolver: "Nice penis enlargement." And a few paragraphs before I used another word frequently used by spammers who offer to enhance your love life. The combination triggered the spam filter.

Spam, spam, spam ...

No wonder spammers have no chance on the IWW mailing lists!

Lesson learned the hard way, but at least the mystery is solved.

A big thank you to our admins!

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