The Art of Stealing Subscribers
A Checklist for the Wannabe Mailing List Owner
|These rules are issued to assist those who
want to build a subscriber base with a minimum of effort while
duplicating existing lists. The Net is best served by repeating the
same themes over and over again and never coming up with anything
new or distinct. The following list lists the techniques which
you can employ to cleanly destroy a list you covet while
enhancing your own standing in the InterNet community.|
- Remember, just because there is already a mailing list on
the subject does not mean that there can't be a new one.
Repetition is a good thing. Be sure to emphasize this by
rehashing the description of the list you are emulating in every
- The best way to get a subscriber base for a new list is to
steal from another list. Don't publish your list announcement
publically, lest the facilitator of the old list and his friends ask
you why there needs to be a new list in the first place. Write
secretly to those who post on the list and ask them to join.
- Sooner or later, the existence of your list will be revealed
to the owner of the old list. Be sure to insist on your "good
faith" and accuse him of the opposite when he asks you why
you thought it was necessary to start a new list. Be sure
not to offer any concrete reason for the new list. If
all else fails, just say Repetition is a good thing. This
makes the owner paranoid, suspicious, and likely to do
something that will make him look bad and you look good.
- Once you have been discovered, invite the owner
of the other list to join your list. If the owner of the
old list doesn't join yours, be sure to mention this to
your loyal associates. You can argue that it only goes to show
that he wants to have all the power to himself and really
isn't sincerely interested in the topic.
- Remember that those who make the most trouble on the
other list will be the greatest advocates of your list. Be sure
to get them aboard your list and keep them there until they
start making trouble for you. Do nothing to stop them from
continuing to make trouble on the old list.
- If possible, crosspost or duplicate subject threads on
both lists. This will encourage others to leave the old list
because they are tired of repetition. If this backfires
and they start to leave your list, ban crossposting
immediately. Repetition is sometimes not a good thing.
- Remain a member of the old mailing list. Be sure to
express your negative opinion wherever possible. Greet any
proposed change at the old list as a challenge to your list and
publically declare them to be so. Whenever possible, misquote
the rules and policies of the old list in such a way as to reflect
badly on the old list. Offer yourself as the shining alternative.
- Remember that as an owner
of your own mailing list, you don't have to observe the rules of
any other list. If you are kicked off a list for breaking them,
call the list owner a "censor".
- Be sure not to allow announcements of other lists on your
list. Complain loudly when other lists deny you the right to
announce your list on their list.
- A good reason to start another list is that the parent list allows
a topic which you do not want to discuss. The owner of that list
is undoubtably a censor because he does not allow your opinion
to become the guiding principle of the list.
- Whenever possible, be extremely civil to the owner of the list
you are copying. Insist that nothing personal is meant by your starting
a new list. Meanwhile keep telling your allies what a jerk the owner
is and how much better you are.
- Repetition is a good thing. Repeat the above steps
How to Avoid Giving Meaningful Tech Support
Rules for Flame Wars
This page written by Joel GAzis-SAx
Copyright 1999 by Joel GAzis-SAx
The GAzis-SAx Websites