.forward thinking

danny's doing something interesting with gmail. he's automagically forwarding a copy of everything that hits his inbox to his gmail account. everything isn't read, but it's filtered as archived. as danny puts it:

"it's not so much a mail reader, as google for my mail archive."

i'm curious to see how he's doing it exactly. procmail? client side filters? .forward trickery? something i don't know about?

still, some folks who are less than thrilled with the idea and i can respect that opinion as much as i do danny's little hack. fortunatley, danny's been cool and set his filters to not forward mails that have a "x-no-archive" header in the name of respecting people's privacy. [i guess that rules out using a .forward, doesn't it?]

privacy has always been a top priority for me - and i tend to respect the secrets people tell me. i also happen to come from the school of though that says "if something is meant to be private then it should be encrypted." i have both a gpg key and an s/mime cert [upon request] and i'll use either if i want to keep things on the downlow. but once a mail hits someone's inbox - encrypted or not, private or public - it's only a matter of time before the facts therein get repeated or cut-and-pasted elsewhere. it's always a good rule of thumb to assume anything you post on the internet will be forwarded somewhere where you'd rather it wouldn't go to.

while i'm on privacy [and because danny mentioned it] there's also a line in my .sig that gets attached to every mail i send out. it plainly states:

this email is: [x] bloggable [ ] ask first [ ] private

i'll admit that i shamelessly ripped that off after reading about ross mayfield's .sig - but the whole reason i added the line was to use it as social experiment. when i started attaching it to my email i'd occasionally throw out an unencrypted crumb of the salacious variety and mark the mail "private". then i'd sit back and wait to see if anything i said would come back to me. what ended up surprising me is that 95% of the time people actually respected the limit i put in place - even if it was a soft one. it was either that or the secrets weren't interesting enough to pass along.

anyhow, i never ended up taking the line out of my .sig and now i've become slightly infamous for having it. so much so that people actually tell me, "don't blog this, okay?" when chatting via aim or in person. hell, i've even affixed it to notes i've left on my whiteboard at work. i'm not sure why tho - i'm the only one in my office who actually blogs.

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